The Mouse Trap
November 18, 2011 6:21 AM Subscribe
That's the drawback of the modern lab mouse. It's cheap, efficient, and highly standardized—all of which qualities have made it the favorite tool of large-scale biomedical research. But as Mattson points out, there's a danger to taking so much of our knowledge straight from the animal assembly line. The inbred, factory-farmed rodents in use today—raised by the millions in germ-free barrier rooms, overfed and understimulated and in some cases pumped through with antibiotics—may be placing unseen constraints on what we know and learn.Slate has just finished a three part series on the pitfalls and promises of laboratory animals. (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3)
All three articles can also be read as a single, text-only article.
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