Animal research and Parkinson's - our policy statement
Find out what we believe about the use of animals in Parkinson's research.
This policy statement has been developed with advice and
guidance from people affected by Parkinson's, health and social care
professionals and other experts.
What we believe about animal research
All people with Parkinson's need the hope that one day there will be a cure.
Martin, person affected by Parkinson's
We believe there is an urgent need for ongoing research in order
to advance our understanding of Parkinson's, improve treatments and
ultimately find a cure.
We believe the use of animals is currently an essential tool in
But we are committed to the minimum possible use of animals and
to ensuring the highest regulatory standards are maintained.
Why we believe this
There is currently no cure for Parkinson's. Researchers are
working to understand what causes the death of dopamine-producing
nerve cells in the brain that leads to the onset of the
The complex research necessary to make progress will only be
successful if researchers are able to use animal models as part of
an integrated research strategy.
What do we mean by animal research?
Medical research uses animal models to mimic aspects of a
human medical condition. Animal models are living, non-human
animals eg rodent, worm, fruit fly, fish.
Using animal models allows researchers to test treatments
or ideas and find out if they may work and are safe before they are
tried in humans.
What's the evidence?
The use of animals in research has contributed to
many breakthroughs in our understanding of Parkinson's and the
discovery of current treatments. This
includes a key treatment, the drug levodopa.
The development of many promising Parkinson's drugs and new
approaches, such as gene therapy, have
involved initial testing in animal models.
Full policy statement
Parkinson's UK policy
statement: Use of animals in research (PDF, 145KB)
Find out more
To find out more about this policy statement contact our Media
team on 020 7932 1335 or firstname.lastname@example.org