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Ethical issues on using invertebrates in environmental and biomedical practices – a case study on living fossil horseshoe crab

John, Akbar and Sheikh Mohamed, Hassan Ibrahim and Ahmed Shogar, Ibrahim Adam and Hashi, Abdurezak Abdulahi and Yunus, Kamaruzzaman and Khan Chowdhury, Ahmed Jalal and Razali, Ailin (2018) Ethical issues on using invertebrates in environmental and biomedical practices – a case study on living fossil horseshoe crab. International Medical Journal Malaysia, 17 (Special Issue 2). pp. 281-285. E-ISSN 1823-4631

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Increasing utilization of living animals in ecological and biomedical research has drawn serious concerns in terms of animal welfare and ethical practices in animal handling. Significant attention has been given to animals of higher taxonomical hierarchy especially vertebrates such as fishes, rodents, reptiles and mammals, while ethical framework on invertebrate handling and welfare is less addressed (except for cephalopods). The definition of ‘Animal’ itself by any international consortia or Animal Research Act (ARA) does not include invertebrates as an animal entity. This is due to the lack of standard ethical framework to understand the pain and other physiological stress experienced by the invertebrate test animal. One such example would be the living fossil ‘horseshoe crab’ which is extensively bled to obtain its blue blood that is used for endotoxin quantification in biological samples. The biomedical bleeding itself leads to 15-30% post bleeding mortality of crabs, while pain and stress caused by the bleeding practice is not studied. Hence, this paper discusses the technicality of establishing standard framework for invertebrate handling. The paper also highlights the shari’ah (Islamic law) principles on scientific experimentations on animal subjects, particularly the norms related to the adoption of invertebrates in environmental and biomedical practice. Comprehensive review of ethical regulations in animal experiments, especially invertebrates, would be beneficial for revising and improving existing animal ethical practices

Item Type: Article (Journal)
Additional Information: 7130/68943
Uncontrolled Keywords: Invertebrates, animal welfare, horseshoe crab, Animal Research Act, shari’ah principle
Subjects: Q Science > QL Zoology
Kulliyyahs/Centres/Divisions/Institutes (Can select more than one option. Press CONTROL button): Kulliyyah of Medicine
Kulliyyah of Science
Kulliyyah of Science > Department of Biotechnology
Kulliyyah of Science > Department of Computational and Theoretical Sciences
Kulliyyah of Science > Department of Marine Science
Kulliyyah of Science > Institute of Oceanography and Maritime Studies
Depositing User: Dr. Akbar John
Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2019 14:26
Last Modified: 10 Jul 2019 14:50
URI: http://irep.iium.edu.my/id/eprint/68943

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