An Insufferable Business: Ethics, Nonhuman Animals and Biomedical Experiments
Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, School of Social, Historical and Literary Studies, University of Portsmouth, Milldam, Burnaby Road, Portsmouth PO1 3AS, Hampshire, UK
Academic Editor: Clive J. C. Phillips
Received: 22 January 2015 / Revised: 29 May 2015 / Accepted: 30 June 2015 / Published: 22 July 2015
This paper explores the ways in which biomedical research that uses nonhuman animal subjects generates financial profits and gains for humans who are associated with the industry. Research establishments, scientists, regulators and persons that inspect laboratories for compliance, those associated with granting licences, companies that sell nonhuman animal subjects and that supply equipment for the research, and corporations that market the resulting products are among those that benefit financially. These profits are rarely discussed—they seem to be camouflaged by the focus of the moral convention that assumes that human health-related needs prevail over those of the nonhuman animals who are so used. The paper concludes by calling for an end to the denigration of nonhuman animals as experimental subjects who can be used as commodities for profit-maximisation and as tools in experiments for human health benefits.