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The University of Bristol is insisting on pursuing cruel and worthless forced swim experiments using rats. In response, actor and Bristol alumnus Will Poulter is taking a stand and urging the institution to make the compassionate decision to ban these tests completely.
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.
The test does nothing more than terrify animals and delay the development of effective new treatments for neurobehavioural conditions such as depression and stress, which are desperately needed.
King's College London and the University of Adelaide in Australia as well as many major pharmaceutical companies have stopped subjecting animals to the forced swim test, which has been similarly used in neurobehavioral research. It's time the University of Bristol followed suit and invested in humane, human-relevant, non-animal methods.