Rebecca L. Walker, PhD and Jill A. Fisher, PhD from the Department of Social Medicine have published a new survey that identifies how researchers using vertebrate animals viewed issues of significance for translational science.
Rebecca L. Walker, PhD, is lead author and Jill A. Fisher, PhD is a co-author of a new survey that aims to identify how researchers using vertebrate animals viewed issues of significance for translational science. Both Walker and Fisher are professors in the Department of Social Medicine.
“Translational science: A survey of US biomedical researchers’ perspectives and practice,” was published December 23 in the journal LabAnimal.
The survey received responses from 1,187 researchers.
“The resulting data show that while scientists have predictable views about the significance of animal studies and the strength of welfare protections, there are important and nuanced differences in researcher perspectives depending on the animals that they use and demographic and experiential factors. These findings indicate that the animal research community must not be painted as monolithic in its perspectives on important questions having to do with scientific practices, oversight or public engagement. Furthermore, although scientists are concerned about apparent shortcomings in translation, reproducibility and rigor in their work, they do not necessarily agree on what is driving these problems when they occur. This indicates that there is no general consensus on the most effective solutions to these problems. Because the value of using vertebrate animals in biomedical research often depends on success in advancing human health, finding such solutions should be a priority,” the survey concluded.