No, I don’t want to hurt pandas. But I do want scientists to experiment on their blood, which apparently, contains a powerful antibiotic. From the Telegraph story:
Scientists have discovered that the animals, of which there are around 1600 in the wild, produce a powerful antibiotic in their blood stream that kills bacteria and fungi. They believe the substance could be used to develop potent new treatments against drug resistant superbugs and other diseases.
Thanks to already conducted research, scientists can now synthesize the antibiotic. But to get there, pandas were used instrumentally–and good for the researchers who did!
Animal rights activists–not to be conflated with animal welfare–insist that humans have no right to experiment on our equals, the animals, for any reason and regardless of any benefit to humans. Many also claim that we derive zero scientific and medical benefit from animal research–a self evident lie. If they had their way, we wouldn’t even know about this new development.
So, what’s it to be? Treat pandas and other animals as equals or engage in properly conducted animal research to develop new medical treatments? That’s a classic no-brainer.