This is the first in what may be a series of blogposts on why using non-human animals to test human gut-immune system interactions (e.g. in ME) is, like the vast majority of animal 'models', illogical, unscientific and a waste of time and money.
As I am short of time and money as ever, I am just reposting an article from Scientific American to kick off with.
BTW, the scientist claiming "I think we're just on the cusp of figuring this out" is exploiting the scientific naivety of the majority of the general public, as scientists so often do. The previous popular claim was that we were on 'the cusp/threshhold/verge of a breakthrough'.
Think about this for a moment. How can anyone know what is about to happen? Such claims often seem to appear at the end of a research project. Could it possibly be to encourage presumably-naive funding bodies and/or charity donors to fund further research to provide researchers with a comfortable living for another few years, something most people with ME can only dream about?
Edit same day:
The main source paper for the above article can be downloaded here.
There is an interesting Figure from another paper here which illustrates some general interspecific (between-species) differences in gut microbiota.
Bizarrely, the source paper for that Figure speaks positively about animal models. It is so ingrained in the research establishment.
Mice with human microbiota fail to develop normal immunity
Blog entry posted by MeSci, Feb 12, 2014.
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