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Yale scientist defends research on birds after PETA protests

ED STANNARD: ‘Christine Lattin, a postdoctoral fellow at Yale University, studies how wild house sparrows react to stress. Her work involves scanning the birds with positron emission tomography to measure stress over time as the birds are kept in captivity… Since May, Lattin, 38, has been under a lot of stress herself, as she has become the target of protests by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals… PETA members have picketed outside the Yale PET Center on Howard Avenue, where Lattin works…

Alka Chandna, chief of laboratory case management for PETA, said the animal rights group decided to protest Lattin because her body of research clearly showed “what type of pain and distress she had inflicted on animals and what was purported to have been learned… We were horrified to learn there was no human benefit to the pain, distress and trauma that she was inflicting on vulnerable birds”… Lattin said her experiments don’t physically harm the sparrows, but she is required to euthanize them according to her scientific collector’s permit…

Chandna said the only animal research PETA supports is that in which “the individual animals that are being researched are going to benefit from that clinical research.” She said experimentation on one species does not translate to other species and that Lattin’s causing stress in sparrows is unjustifiable. “If the ostensible purpose of her work is to figure out how to ameliorate stress in animals, the question is, is she planning on opening a zoo for sparrows? There is no purpose except academic curiosity”.’ SOURCE…

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