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Medical Benefits

*Every person in the United States has directly benefited from biomedical research using animals. Through biomedical research, scientists strive to better understand the causes of disease; to develop new drugs, vaccines, or procedures to prevent or treat diseases; and to test the safety of products we use everyday.


Who Benefits from Animal Research?

Human Benefits:

Virtually every major medical advance in the past century has depended upon studies involving laboratory animals. These advances include:

  • Vaccines for the prevention of measles, mumps, polio, hepatitis, typhus, diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, smallpox
  • Prevention and treatment of cancer
  • Insulin treatments for diabetics
  • Antibiotics to treat infectious diseases
  • Organ transplants
  • Heart and vascular surgery
  • Bioengineering advances (stents, pacemakers, joint replacements, imaging technology, etc.)
  • Medications for high blood pressure, arthritis, and mental illness


Animal Benefits:

Furthermore, animal health and care continue to advance as a result of biomedical research. Experiments with animals led to discoveries that prevent and treat diseases among pets, farm animals, laboratory animals, and wild animals. Veterinary treatments for diabetes, cancer and arthritis are based on corresponding therapies for people developed through animal research. Nearly 90% of the veterinary medicines that are used to treat animals are the same as, or very similar to, those developed to treat human patients

Additional animal benefits include:

  • Vaccines against distemper, rabies, feline leukemia virus, and parvovirus
  • Treatments for cancer
  • New techniques for traumas and surgery
  • Antibiotics to treat infections
  • Bioengineering advances (pacemakers, hip replacements, imaging technology, prosthetic paws and legs, etc.)
  • Prevention and treatment for dog heartworm
  • Breeding programs for endangered species


Some Benefits of Animal Research



Vaccine Development

  • Chickenpox

  • Diphtheria

  • Flu
  • Hepatitis A & B

  • Influenza
  • Measles

  • Meningitis
  • Mumps
  • Pneumococcal Pneumonia
  • Polio

  • Rabies

  • Rotavirus
  • Rubella

  • Smallpox
  • Tetanus

  • Tuberculosis
  • Whooping Cough (Pertussis)

  • Anthrax

  • Blue Tongue in Sheep

  • Brucellosis in Cattle

  • Chlamydia in Cats
  • Distemper in Dogs and Cats

  • E.coli Infections in Pigs
  • Equine Encephalitis

  • Equine Rhino Virus

  • Equine Influenza

  • Feline Leukemia

  • Foot and Mouth Disease in Cattle
  • Hog Cholera

  • Infectious Bronchitis in Birds
  • Infectious Hepatitis in Dogs

  • Kennel Cough
  • Lyme Disease

  • Newcastle Disease in Poultry

  • Parvo Virus in Dogs

  • Pneumonia Complex in Cats

  • Potomac Horse Fever

  • Rabies

  • Tetanus


  • AIDS

  • Allergies

  • Alzheimer's Disease

  • Birth Defects

  • Blindness

  • Burns

  • Cancer

  • Diarrhea in Infants

  • Diabetes

  • Emphysema

  • Epilepsy

  • Glaucoma

  • Heart Disease

  • Huntingdon's Disease

  • Multiple Sclerosis

  • Muscular Dystrophy

  • New Drug Development

  • Nutrition

  • Open Heart Surgery

  • Osteoporosis
  • Parkinson's Disease

  • Spinal Cord Injury

  • Stroke
  • Tooth and Gum Disease

  • Allergies

  • Artificial Insemination

  • Cancer
  • Embryo Transfer Techniques

  • Epilepsy
  • Heart Disease
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Improved Pain Killers
  • Inherited Diseases

  • Pet Food Nutrition

  • Prosthetic Limbs
  • Tooth and Gum Disease


  • Allergies

  • Anesthesia

  • Antibiotics

  • Artificial Joint Replacement

  • Asthma
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Birth Defects

  • Cancer

  • Cataract Removal
  • Childhood Poisonings

  • Diabetes

  • Epilepsy
  • Emphysema

  • High Blood Pressure

  • Kidney Disease

  • Malaria

  • Open Heart Surgery
  • Organ Transplants

  • Renal Dialysis
  • Stroke

  • Antibiotics

  • Artificial Joints for Dogs

  • Blood Transfusions

  • Cancer

  • Cataracts

  • Glaucoma

  • Heart Disease

  • Hip Dysplasia

  • Kidney Transplants

  • Lameness in Horses

  • Orthopedic Surgery

  • Pacemakers

  • Pet Cancer
  • Vitamin Deficiency Disease

  • Parasites:

    • Giardiasis

    • Heartworm

    • Hookworm

    • Leptospirosis

    • External Parasites:

      • fleas

      • lice

      • mites

      • ticks

For additional vaccines and treatments, please see the pages for human benefits at Diseases and Research and for animal benefits at Veterinary Medicine.