For close to two decades, we have been using animal and, more recently, adult stem cells in our laboratories to help screen new compounds and identify safer and more effective medicines. We acknowledge the sensitive ethical issues surrounding certain forms of stem cells and strongly oppose cloning of human embryos, but we believe that stem cell research, conducted in accordance with the highest ethical standards set by leading scientific authorities, is an important tool in the search for innovative new medicines.
With compelling evidence from this research, we have begun to explore accessing drug development technology from leading academic, biotechnology and pharmaceutical partners around the world, who also have experience with currently available human embryonic stem cell lines that meet the same high ethical standards that apply to our internal research. Pfizer's Stem Cell Policy guides the company's research activities and its exploration of new external partnerships.
Animal Care and Use
Pfizer's Animal Care and Use Policy reflects our absolute commitment that animals used in research are treated humanely. This means that any research involving animals is conducted only after appropriate ethical consideration and review. This review ensures that we provide a high level of care to experimental animals, and that there is no scientifically appropriate and validated alternative to the use of animals that is acceptable to regulators, where relevant. For as long as it remains necessary to use animals in biomedical research for the discovery, development and evaluation of new medicines, we commit to maintaining the highest standards in the humane treatment of these animals.
We are fully committed to the development and use of scientifically validated alternative testing methods that are acceptable to regulatory authorities and do not compromise patient safety or the effectiveness of our medicines. Pfizer continues to engage and lead cross-industry efforts aimed at developing and refining new in vitro testing and predictive informatics-based systems that hold promise for future reduction of animal usage. We work through pharmaceutical trade organizations and directly with regulators to increase the recognition and acceptance of alternative models where such alternatives can be used appropriately.