University of Washington Approves $123M Underground Animal Testing Lab for 'Better Conditions for Animals'

Proponents of animal testing just can’t seem to get the big picture. Public interest is becoming more aware of how lab animals are treated, and the advances in humane alternatives that exist. Yet, despite all this, the regents at University of Washington recently approved a new $123 million dollar animal research facility without discussion, according to KUOW.

At this point in our history, there is nothing new and exciting about expanding an animal research facility. If a university really wanted to get noticed, to be on the cutting edge of medical science, they would invest in future technology that has potential to be more accurate, like stem cells, 3D printing, and other human analogs.

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KUOW reports that the lab will be underground to avoid blocking views of Portage Bay. It’s not a huge leap to also speculate that having an underground research facility conveys some sort of shame for what is taking place inside.

The Seattle Times reports the following grim additions that will take place in the new facility:

  • Space for an additional 280 monkeys (they currently have 650)
  • Increase the number of rodents 10 – 20 percent
  • Nearly double the current number of pigs

Orin Smith, the UW Board of Regents Chair, said to KUOW that “he hopes the UW will have more alternatives to animal research in the future.” Perhaps he could have helped that goal by providing $123 million to fund animal testing alternatives, instead of an underground animal research facility.

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Image Source: Ed Schipul/Flickr