Angry protesters campaign against the uni’s killing of over 40,000 rats

Angry campaigners gather to protest against the uni’s ‘cruel’ and ‘useless’ use of animals for scientific research.

Anger was fuelled by a Freedom of Information Act disclosure revealing over 50,000 animals were killed during 2011, 43,000 of which were mice.

Campaign group Animal Aid are protesting to stop what they call “agonisingly cruel and medically useless” animal testing.

The protest ambulance displayed gruesome pics of research rats to shock the public

The group’s converted ambulance was parked outside the main building, adorned with the message “Corrupt sciences – the nightmare world of GM (genetically modified) mice exposed.” From the side of the van, footage of mice experiments were screened, clearly visible to passers-by, ensuring their message was understood.

You can watch some of their campaign here:

The mice developed tumours, internal bleeding and deadly bladder blockages as a result of genetic modifying by the university’s own research team, some even given established drugs to test the effects.

Inside Cardiff’s secretive underground research labs

The uni keeps all sorts of animals for these experiments in a secretive underground location. Hundreds of rats are kept in rows of drawer-style containers, like mini hamster cages. After the experiments have taken place, the rats are always killed.

‘Agonisingly cruel and medically useless’

Animal Aid is adamant that the figures would be much greater if the unpublicised ‘failed’ and ‘surplus’ mice were taken into account.

But this is not the first time Cardiff uni has been in the news over animal testing.

Back in July last year, the uni was attacked for sewing kittens’ eyes up for a piece of research.

The experiment was trying to find a cure for lazy eye in children. It caused uproar in the media, branded as ‘shocking’ and ‘meaningless’. The general feeling was the experiment could have been done easily and painlessly on humans.

Student Nick Simmons who attended the protest said:

“When ethics are clearly being breached in the public eye, someone has to rise above the noise and say something and they definitely got the word across loud and clear.”

‘Protest heard LOUD and CLEAR’

However, not everyone was supporting the cause.

“The student union was very un-cooperative in assisting with the protest. They didn’t want to be involved because it gives them a bad reputation I guess,” Nick added.

Cardiff University continues to stand by its methods, saying the research is ‘aimed at the alleviation of human and veterinary disease’ and is carried out in accordance with strict conditions.