Good News! Top Colombian University Bans Cruel Forced Swim Test

Posted by on August 23, 2023 | Permalink

In a groundbreaking move, Universidad del Valle (Univalle), a top research university in Colombia, has publicly banned the forced swim test on animals after discussions with PETA US, becoming the first university in Latin America to do so.

Unreliable and Cruel Experiment

In the forced swim test, experimenters usually dose mice, rats, or other small animals with a test substance and force them into inescapable beakers of water. The animals try everything to avoid drowning and try to escape – paddling furiously, attempting to climb up the sides of the beakers, or diving underwater in search of an exit – before they eventually start to float.

The test has been widely debunked by scientists who argue that floating is not a sign of depression or despair – as thought decades ago when the test was conceived – but rather a sign of learning. The animals are more likely to be adapting and saving energy.

Experts say that putting rodents into beakers of water is not required for testing antidepressants and could even hinder progress in finding effective new treatments for humans.

Top Universities and Big Pharma Are Saying No to Nearly Drowning Mice

Univalle joins the University of Adelaide, Macquarie University, King’s College London, the University of Exeter, and Newcastle University, among others, in shunning the forced swim test after hearing from PETA entities.

More than a dozen big pharmaceutical companies, including Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, AbbVie, Roche, and others have also declared they do not intend to use the test after talks with PETA US.

Will the University of Bristol Be Next?

We commend Univalle for its compassionate decision to ban this barbaric experiment and call on the University of Bristol to follow its lead. When we ask, they listen. Join our campaign and speak out for rats and mice: