Joan Davids: Komen for the Cure on animal testing
As a breast cancer survivor, chairperson of the Romp to Stomp out Breast Cancer and a volunteer for Susan G. Komen for the Cure, I feel compelled to correct Nancy Morey and her statement in her letter to the editor dated May 10, titled “Be Kind to Animals.” Nancy stated that organizations, such as Susan G. Komen, fund animal (tested) research and the inhumane use of animal experiments. I would like to clarify what, in fact, Susan G. Komen for the Cure does fund.
As background information, Susan G. Komen for the Cure is the global leader in funding life-saving breast cancer research. Komen for the Cure has invested nearly $1.5 billion in research and community health programs, nearly $465 million of which has gone directly to research. Komen for the Cure is constantly recognized by various non-profit rating organizations, such as charitynavigator.org, as a top-rated nonprofit organization.
The following is a subset of the information as posted on the Komen National website, dated April, 2009, titled “Susan G. Komen for the Cure on Animal Testing.”:
“While Susan G. Komen for the Cure does not conduct research, it does fund innovative and responsive research projects in leading institutions worldwide. … Komen has strict controls to maintain the integrity of the grant application and review process. Komen’s Grant Program adheres to a blinded, peer-review process that is recognized by the National Cancer Institute. The federal Food and Drug Administration requires that any new pharmaceutical compound be tested on at least two different animal models to be considered for approval for use in humans. Therefore, some investigators must conduct animal testing in order to comply with FDA regulations for drug development. In order to be eligible for Komen research grant funding, investigators must provide proof of pre-approval of study design and animal care methods from the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) at the institution where they will be conducting research. In accordance with U.S. federal law, the IACUC may permit some investigators to use laboratory animals, usually genetically bred mice, in their search to identify more effective ways to prevent and treat breast cancer. Researchers are also required to file an Investigator Assurance Statement to ensure all procedures are in compliance with National Institute of Health and U.S. Department of Agriculture regulations.”
Given this detail, hopefully Summit County residents will continue to support Komen for the Cure via walks, runs and the local Romp to Stomp out Breast Cancer. Komen is, indeed, an organization deserving of everyone’s support; helping to eradicate breast cancer as a life threatening disease.
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