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Urge the University of Bristol to Ban Forced Swimming Tests

Update (5 March 2024):
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Home Office Lord Sharpe of Epsom has announced his intention to eliminate use of the forced swim test in the UK.

Lord Sharpe of Epsom has accepted the Animals in Science Committee’s advice to ban the use of this cruel and scientifically flawed test as a model of human depression or for studies of anxiety and its treatment and to further restrict other uses of the test, with steps being taken immediately to do so. No reputable institution should continue using this archaic test. Please help us keep the pressure on the University of Bristol to drop it now.

Original post:
The University of Bristol is insisting on pursuing cruel and worthless forced swimming tests using rats.

University experimenters place small animals in sheer-sided containers of water and watch them paddle furiously in search of an exit, desperately trying to keep their heads above water, terrified of drowning.

The test does nothing more than torment animals and delay the development of effective new treatments for human mental health conditions, which are desperately needed.

Several universities, including King’s College London, as well as many major pharmaceutical companies have stopped subjecting animals to these cruel near-drowning tests, which have also been used in neurobehavioural research. It’s time the University of Bristol followed suit and invested in humane, human-relevant, non-animal methods.

University of Bristol

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