April 24 marks World Day for Animals in Laboratories – a day recognised by the United Nations to remember the millions of animals that have been used and killed in animal experiments around the world.

Every year inside British laboratories more than three million animals are subjected to experiments.

In safety tests, they are force-fed substances, have chemicals rubbed into their skin or dripped into their eyes, or are made to inhale toxic fumes.

In disease research, animals are deliberately brain-damaged, injected with cancerous tissue, or subjected to special breeding programmes that leave them weakened, disease-prone and mentally deranged.

To incarcerate animals and deliberately inflict pain on them in the name of science is unacceptable.

These experiments are also potentially harmful to people, because species differences mean that the results cannot reliably be extrapolated to humans.

Drugs which are shown to be safe in animals may later prove to be dangerous when used by humans.

ASHLEY OWEN, Animal Aid, Bradford Street, Tonbridge, Kent