Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:

Clinical Review

Science, medicine, and the future: Molecular genetic approaches to understanding disease

BMJ 1997; 314 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.314.7074.126 (Published 11 January 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;314:126

Rapid Response:

alarm over animal models

"Animal models of genetic diseases are proving useful research
tools."
The reasons why this statement alarms me relate to the fact that we are in
no way physically related to research animals.
The mechanisms of meiotic cell division which underlie gametogenesis and
therefore sexual reproduction serve to FIX the CHROMOSOME NUMBERS of
species .Because synapsis/meiosis will not occur unless each chromosome
has an homologous partner.And the respective members of each chromosome
pair are inherited from the respective male and female parents.So there is
no way an ODDly inherited chromosome can be bequeathed to the next
generation.
SECONDLY, the known chromosome numbers of various species ARE NOT RANKED
IN ANY SORT OF HIERARCHICAL ORDER-i.e.
THERE IS NO "EVOLUTIONARY"ORDER in chromosome numbers.See
www.kean.edu/~breid/chrom2.htm
Therefore we are not physically related to laboratory animals in any
way,and therefore any similarities between our respective
physiological/pathological responses to various experimental insults are
purely coincidental,and
inferences from animal experiments must remain purely conjectural.
One set of tragic consequences resulting from extrapolation of animal
findings to humans is recorded in BMJ25/4/98pp
1295-1298"Recent experience with fialuridin.....5ouf of15 patients
died,2required...............this effect had not been demonstrated in FOUR
animal species.'
I would like to suggest that our thinking will become clearer when we have
debunked the theory of evolution.
And the marvels which you have revealed will become all the more
marvellous.

Competing interests:
None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

11 September 2004
Alfred N Jackson
Primary Care Physician
Bulawayo,Zimbabwe