Some ethical aspects of xenotransplantation in light of the proposed European directive on the protection of animals used for scientific purposes

Transplantation Proceedings
M Jorqui-Azofra, C M Romeo-Casabona


Unlike what has happened in other times, society in general and especially the scientific community has become aware that animals share our sensitivity to pain and the capacity to suffer. In this regard, it is generally accepted that animals must be protected from all types of abuse. In fact, it is unavoidable today that animals used in scientific experiments enjoy the maximum degree of protection and well-being. This view is based on an ecocentric notion of living matter as opposed to the traditional anthropocentric approach because it has become evident that ethics should not be limited to those belonging to the same species. Likewise, there is a broad consensus-with the exception of members of certain animal protection groups-regarding the need to experiment with animals, when no alternative methods (AM) are available, given that the current state of scientific knowledge still does not allow for this type of experimentation to be entirely abolished. Nevertheless, we must keep in mind that not every scientific procedure in which animals are used is legitimate. On one side of the scale that symbolizes the legislation in this field, we find the weight of science and safety, and on the other side, the weight of ethics. In this a...Continue Reading


Jan 15, 2002·European Journal of Health Law·C M Romeo-Casabona

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