BUAV investigation exposes sheep suffering at Cambridge University

08/06/2014

A BUAV undercover investigation at the University of Cambridge has revealed the use of sheep for research into neurological disorders, including Batten’s disease and Huntington’s disease.

Our investigation has been reported in the Sunday Mirror.

Watch our investigation film.

The sheep, imported from New Zealand, suffered greatly, in particular experiencing eyesight loss and disorientation. As their condition worsened they struggled to walk in a straight line and would bang their heads into stationary objects. They experienced weight loss and strange head movements. Some sheep had invasive implants surgically implanted into their brains. The implant caused a large head wound, which if the sheep knocked their heads could worsen. Packs connected to the implant recorded brain activity for 24 hours. The sheep were kept in this facility undergoing behavioural tests and monitored as their condition deteriorated until they died or were killed.  

Among the incidents we uncovered:

Batten’s disease is a rare genetic disease. The main genetic mutation causing Batten’s disease in humans is not found in sheep and the animals suffer from a condition that mimics only some of the abnormalities seen in people with Batten’s disease. There are also structural differences between the human and sheep form of the disease as well as critically important distinctions including the pathological changes found in sheep which are different to the corresponding disease in humans. Any subsequent results from the sheep research cannot, therefore, be safely and reliably extrapolated to humans. Indeed, the principal purpose of the research appears to be for Huntington’s disease, a very different condition. Extrapolation will therefore be even more difficult.

To find out more: http://bit.ly/BUAVsheep