Why are lab animals used for the clinical trial of a vaccine?

What is Animal Testing?

Animal testing is a kind of in vivo testing that uses nonhuman animals in experiments to check the effectiveness of the product on the biological system (animal) under study. Experimenting on animals is a common procedure in pharmaceutical industries. Most of the animals are euthanized after being used in an experiment. Some of the animals are purpose-bred for experiments. While some of them are caught from the wild areas and some even are supplied by the dealers. Animal testing is done for various pharmaceutical products like drug, vaccines, diagnostic kits, genetic markers etc.

Why are lab animals used for the clinical trial of a vaccine?

Developing of a human vaccine is no less than developing a masterpiece. Vaccines manufacture process relies on the use of lab animals in a clinical research laboratory. For clinical trials of drug, vaccine, and other medical devices the safety of the medical product is a must. A lab animal testing identifies the nature, chemistry, effect, and its damage on the body.

Clinical testing using animals helps in measuring how much a drug is absorbed in the blood; how the drug product is chemically broken inside the body; the toxicity of the product; and how fast the products are excreted from the body.

The authorities require animal models to undergo preclinical assessment before permitting the product to enter the clinical phase in human subjects. Recently, the pharmaceutical industries are progressing to reduce and replace the number of lab animal used in their clinical research. Instead of animal models bioinformatics and computational biology design are used to design vaccine candidates. To find the evaluation of the response of the immune system from a new vaccine, live animals are best in providing accurate results.

Furthermore, to identify the process of immune protection, identifying the route of formulation, time of onset of immunity, and to find the safety of the developed vaccine lab animals are foremost. It is important to note that only one animal can’t provide all the required information about the vaccine. Instead, a variety of animals is used for the same. Large animals prove to predict accurate vaccine outcome in humans than to other models.

All these factors suggest there are vital areas where animal testing is crucial. Nevertheless, FDA is trying its best to reduce animal for clinical researchers.

What type of animal is used for testing?

A study suggests around 120 million animals are used globally for testing vaccines, drugs, and other pharmaceutical products. Variant species from the animal department are used in the clinical research laboratory for preclinical testing. The most common animals used are mice, rat, dogs, fishes, rabbit, guinea pig, hamster cow, bird, cat, monkey, and other non-human primates. Invertebrates, vertebrates, and non-human pirates are used for animal testing worldwide. However, replacement, refinement, and reduction are some of the strategies used to reduce the number of animals used for clinical research.


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