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NZ Govt: Animal testing Party Pills

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http://www.stuff.co....for-legal-highs

Dogs will forced to take lethal doses of party pills under a controversial scientific testing method being considered by the Government to determine whether the designer drugs are safe for humans.

The SPCA, animal rights groups and the Greens say using animals to prove the safety of non-medical drugs is "barbaric" and are urging New Zealanders to fight the proposal when public submissions are called for.

SPCA Auckland chief executive Bob Kerridge also urged New Zealanders to force officials into banning the trials.

"Any test at all for this product on animals is quite frankly abhorrent," Kerridge said.

"This is a product that is of no benefit to humans. In addition to doing considerable harm to the animals, it has no beneficial outcome whatsoever. Therefore, [the testing] should not be allowed."

Under current laws, novel recreational drugs, or party pills, are exempt from the rules applied to pharmaceutical companies, which must prove drugs are safe for human use.

Until now, it has been up to the Government to prove party pills are unsafe but it wants to change the law, putting the burden on manufacturers to prove the pills will not cause harm.

According to a Ministry of Health report - "Regulations governing the control of novel psychoactive drugs" - outlining what testing would be needed under the law change, a designer drug "must" go through pre-clinical animals studies and it is "critical" to show a drug is safe for animals before it can be given to humans.

"At the study's completion, animals are sacrificed and tissues from all organ systems examined," the paper said.

Both rats and dogs would be subject to a lethal dose 50 per cent (LD50) test, where doses of the drug increase until half the test group dies. The method is banned in Britain and is not recognised by the OECD.

Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne said that despite a public consultation process, it was "unavoidable" that party pills would be tested on animals - including dogs.

"The Government is committed to minimal use of animal testing, but the hard truth is that scientifically, animal testing is unavoidable to prove that products are safe for human beings," Dunne told the Star-Times. "It is an unpleasant but necessary reality."

Legislation detailing the testing regime will be voted on early next year, following select committee debate that will allow for a period of public consultation.

A Ministry of Health spokesman said current policy was that animal testing in New Zealand should be "minimised" and the ministry was "actively" seeking alternatives to animal testing for party pills. It added: "The testing requirements for products to be approved under the new regulatory regime are not yet determined, though they would broadly resemble the tests new medicines undergo." Those tests include the LD50.

Animal welfare advocates called on New Zealanders to fight the proposed animal testing.

Green Party MP Mojo Mathers said: "I think it is barbaric. Dogs and other animals shouldn't be made to suffer just so that we can get legal highs on store shelves.

"I really encourage people who feel that testing of party pills on dogs and other animals is unethical to speak out against this proposal. Animal testing is cruel and it's not justifiable for party pills.

"Anyone who owns a dog will know that they are intelligent, affectionate animals capable of great loyalty and trust to humans," she said.

"To contemplate subjecting them to such cruel tests that will cause very high levels of pain and suffering, all in the name of allowing people to have a legal high is, in my view, totally unethical."

Once the pills have gone through tests involving dogs and rats and no major concerns are uncovered, they will be tested on humans.

The paper said: "Clinical trials with healthy volunteers need to be conducted in a medical setting with close medical supervision with access to advanced emergency care in the event of volunteers suffering adverse clinical effects.

"As these drugs are by nature psychoactive, volunteers will also need to be closely monitored by a registered psychologist for evidence of adverse psychological events."

The drugs could also "impair judgement of the user and have detrimental effects upon themselves and others, secondary to the user's altered state, such as impaired driving leading to motor vehicle accidents".

The ministry's document outlining the clinical testing process also touches on the "addiction potential" of party pills containing BZP.

It states that previous trials involving rats - that measured the animals' reactions to different substances - had shown they reacted to BZP "in a manner similar to that found with other addictive drugs such as heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine".

More than 20 million party pills were sold in New Zealand in the five-year period leading up to the Government's 2008 crackdown on the over-the-counter highs.

:BANGHEAD2:

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These things have to be done, it's unethical to kill humans to harvest their organs after supplying them with a LD50 dose of something afterall.

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I'm not very vociferous with my opinions for the most part, but for what it's worth: I don't like animal testing.

At all. For anything.

I don't care what discovery could come out of it. It is an abomination.

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What the fuck, this has to be some kind of nefarious scheme. I cannot support this type of testing for something indeed as frivolous as party pills. Give me a waiver form, and I will test the limits. This just can't be serious - there's no way that the politicians have 180'd from "no tolerance" to "let's kill all the dogs, yay legal highs!". Maybe they want the public outcry directed such that they never test any drugs - making the legal route of releasing these chemicals - an orphan floating on a piece of ice in the arctic.

Calmer Additions: The LD50 will not help to set a safe limit whatsoever. It's well known what the LD50 of ethanol is for example, but knowing it has done nothing to prevent its abuse and resulting rising death-toll. Obviously a 'safe' limit needs to be determined, but we don't need to kill half of a group of animals to find one. The moment that one animal dies is probably the moment you've gone way past where you needed to. How about the moment 10% of animals have dangerously high heart-rates? How about finding that limit, and testing a factor-adjusted (for weight, and enzymatic pathways) amount on humans. Something like that would be a lot more useful. Besides, the LD50 is not even useful. It's not as if you can say: Safe = LD50/2, as the therapeutic index (http://en.wikipedia....erapeutic_index) varies for each chemical.

After reading that article, it says that it's not even used in practice, and that the human trial version based on toxicity is better. I don't think it's worth selling a legal high saying "If you smoke just less than a brick's worth, then you won't die" while excluding the fact that your alveoli will still pop like pop rocks if you did [smoke that much or less].

I think it's justifiable to deliver only the Protective index (the level you can consume without toxicity, which is well before the deadly level), as the people who will exceed such a dosage [safe dose] willingly, will willingly exclude the fatal dose too (i.e. with alcohol, prescription medicine, etc).

Edited by CβL
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:BANGHEAD2:

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I can just see it now. Fido with a glass of whiskey in one paw and a ciggy in the other, warming up to their next cup of coffee.

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They should test these drugs on welfare scabs, orphaned kids and pensioners.

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and persons with animated avatars ^^

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That's ridiculous. I wouldn't knowingly buy a party product like that if they killed a bunch of dogs and rats test it's safety. Why wouldn't they look to legalizing E and other substance that a significant amount of data regarding risks and lethal dosages already exist about. Although they've probably done similar tests with E on animals, there is no need for more death.

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of course there's a need for it. Would you be in support of non-tested pharmaceuticals being released onto the market? Of course not, there would be a public outcry from all of the soapboxers, especially on SAB

Its either animal testing or people testing, take your pick.

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dogs and other animals are going to be tested on for other reasons no matter what and also used for food, imprisoned by pet owners and put out of natural home by development, everyone else is benefiting from their harm, why not us if it is happening anyway? at least our dogs have a 50% chance of a good time, until organ harvesting that is.

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your a bit of a weirdo sometimes psylo, whilst i understand the humour behind the easy target of a welfare scab i dont understand the orphan or the pensioner? i suppose you enjoy stirring the pot and the soapbox but still man you do lack a certain ethics gene.

edit

however i totally agree, humans before animals everyday in regards to testing animals first, in both regards atheism and god that is what is dictated as the logical answer.

Edited by santiago
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Only sometimes !? I'm insulted.

The reality is, if people are going to piss and moan about animal testing, whats the other option. Its people. And it can't be regular folks, or the failed drug scandals would be rife. No, it needs to be desperate, non-contributing or senile people who can just disappear quietly when that next great pharma (still in R & D) swells their vagina to the size of a giant clam.

Or, here's a novel idea, brace yourself. Let's keep testing on animals ! In a very strange & conveluted way, Santiago, that is my point.

Edited by Psylo

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im sure when you first joined this site you had a go at me in the first month for being ....a tad harsh at times, i dont know whether to be proud of you or look at myself for becoming a conformist elitist scumbag :)

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It's not animal testing that's the issue. It's the slaying of them to calculate a poor estimate, of a meaningless number (see my above post, which I've now edited).

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i highly doubt they will start feeding these pills to dogs to find the LD-50

thats just ridiculous i can imagine the shit they would go through with the SPCA

and animal rights activists

its wrong and it just wont happen

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What the fuck, this has to be some kind of nefarious scheme. I cannot support this type of testing for something indeed as frivolous as party pills. Give me a waiver form, and I will test the limits. This just can't be serious - there's no way that the politicians have 180'd from "no tolerance" to "let's kill all the dogs, yay legal highs!". Maybe they want the public outcry directed such that they never test any drugs - making the legal route of releasing these chemicals - an orphan floating on a piece of ice in the arctic.

Agreed.

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Stupidity

I mean how hard would it be to find ppl willing to test these pills just hang around centerlink with a big bag of them and a liability waver and there you have it problem solved

I bet I could round up a bunch of ppl that would eat 10 a day if you supplied them even if you told them they were untested, dangerous and could possibly kill them.

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"More than 20 million party pills were sold in New Zealand in the five-year period leading up to the Government's 2008 crackdown on the over-the-counter highs."

that's a fair test group. better kill some dogs eh cuz.

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they're just trying to get official safety data for these drugs so they can be dosed accordingly and be all legit in the eyes of the pharmaco-medical establishment. these are the kinds of tests all new drugs must pass to be given to humans. it's definitely a massive, MASSIVE step in the right direction.

the most important test, and least likely to be picked up with people just taking them, is the kind (which i have forgotten the name of) where they test if the drug causes congenital disorders in the offspring of the takers. anyone remember thalidomide? yeah. sometimes these things even skip generations, so it's important to test many animals to ensure horrible effects don't happen to people.

...though i don't really see why they're going to do it on dogs...mice or rats would make more sense i think.

edit: also yeah i definitely disagree with the LD50 thing as well.

Edited by frank

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That's ridiculous. I wouldn't knowingly buy a party product like that if they killed a bunch of dogs and rats test it's safety.

have you EVER bought a pharmaceutical? people don't just invent drugs and hope theyre safe and put them straight on the market. not any more anyway. oh wait, except in the legal highs market! which is full of dangerous poisons!

i am also against animal testing, i will have to do much of it in my life and i don't think it will be much fun, but at the moment there really isn't a better way.

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Dont sheep suffer enough in New Zealand

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Hitler would say that's some fuked up shit and have it abolished. He really did some cool stuff as well as the genocide thingy.

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Can't we test this stuff out on convicted pedophiles?? Or tony Abbott and mark Latham ?

Edited by incognito
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