PETA Scientist on Winning Team for 2024 Lush Prize for Replacing Animals in Tests

For Immediate Release:
May 21, 2024

Brandi Pharris 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va.

PETA is pleased to announce that Dr. Emily Trunnell, director of the group’s Science Advancement & Outreach division, is among the panel of recipients of the prestigious 2024 Lush Prize for Major Science Collaboration.

The Coalition to Illuminate and Address Animal Methods Bias, an international group of researchers and advocates that includes Trunnell, won this year’s award by exposing and dismantling “animal methods bias” in scientific publishing.

The coalition—through peer-reviewed research, workshops, presentations, and more—showed that the prevailing scientific bias favors the antiquated convention of using animals in experiments, despite the availability of perfectly workable non-animal research methods.

“Frightened and confused animals are psychologically tormented, mutilated, and killed in failing experiments that cost billions but do nothing to protect human health,” says Trunnell. “Superior, non-animal testing methods are readily available, and researchers should be encouraged to use cutting-edge technology that is relevant to humans and leaves animals in peace and rewarded for doing so.”

This bias against non-animal testing methods prevents significant scientific research from ever getting off the ground, blocks funding of grant applications, and results in skewed peer reviews of papers that are submitted for publication.

It also harms early-career researchers, who may abandon non-animal methods due to the impression that using animals is the only way to get ahead in their careers and advance science, even though studies show that 90% of all basic research—most of which involves animals—fails to lead to treatments for humans.

In the U.S., the National Institutes of Health spends approximately $19 billion in taxpayer funds annually for painful and deadly experiments on animals.

The Coalition to Illuminate and Address Animal Methods Bias was formed following a workshop in April 2022 that gathered stakeholders from publishing, academia, industry, government, and nongovernmental organizations to discuss the bias in scientific publishing.

The group has since developed the Author Guide for Addressing Animal Methods Bias in Publishing, which contains information that researchers may use during study design, manuscript preparation and submission, and peer review to avoid or address reviewers’ unfounded preferences for using animals in experiments. 

The Lush Prize is the largest prize fund in the non-animal testing sector and supports initiatives to end or replace animal testing.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—points out that Every Animal Is Someone and offers free Empathy Kits for people who need a lesson in kindness. For more information, please visit or follow the group on X, Facebook, or Instagram.

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