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Scientists at Imutran, the British subsidiary of Novartis, have been slaving away in their labs for years trying to score a viable success in their experiments transplanting organs and tissues between species, a practice known as xenotransplantation. But according to a DAILY EXPRESS expose cited by THE ECOLOGIST, their efforts have been riddled with animal cruelty, not to mention botched lab techniques. Uncaged Animals, a UK advocacy group that blew the whistle on Imutran, charges that the company also exaggerated their research results in the pursuit of profit.

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Uncaged Campaigns released a report on instances of cruelty to the monkeys and baboons that serve as research subjects, and sloppy science in the experiments — a report that Imutran/Novartis is now trying to squelch in court.

The controversy surrounding the case points up further concerns about xenotransplantation’s potential dangers, including the transmission of diseases and even cancer-causing retroviruses. The issue warrants closer examination, The Ecologist cautions, given biotech’s cheerleading on “advances” such as the transplantation of pig organs into ailing humans.

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Fact:

In-depth journalism that investigates the powerful takes real money and is so damn important right now.But it doesn’t take a Mother Jones investigation to know that billionaires and corporations will never fund the type of reporting (like they do politicians) we do that exists to help bring about change. Instead, our mission-driven journalism is made possible by people power, and has been for 46 years now since our founding as a non-profit.

In “TITLE TK” Monica Bauerlein writes about the perilous moment we’re in, and why it’s so important that we raise $325,000 by the time November’s midterms are decided so we can be ready to throw everything we have at the big issues facing the nation no matter what happens. Please help MoJo’s people-powered journalism with a donation today.

$400,000 to go!

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