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This Breakthrough May End Animal Testing in Cosmetics

Researchers have found a better way to test makeup

No matter how much of a beauty buff you are, it's heart-breaking to see those images posted by animal rights activists of bunnies and monkeys in cages undergoing cosmetics testing. So it's a huge relief to find out that researchers at Newcastle University in the UK have found a better way to test new cosmetics ingredients and drugs.

The test, called Skimune™, works by extracting skin cells from humans and replicating the cells, which can be tested for adverse reactions to pharmaceutical or cosmetic ingredients. The test not only spares animals, the results of skin tests are more accurate than animal testing, according to Professor Ann Dickinson from the Institute of Cellular Medicine.

Dickinson has worked 20 years to perfect this method, and told fellow scientists at a conference in Brussels (where she presented the research) that the breakthrough is also faster than the old mice-based system, showing results in just two weeks for most cases.

The Newcastle researchers are also working to create tests for individuals, which would produce personalized results for drug and cosmetic reactions.


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