2018, Vol. 2 Issue 4, Part APages: 11-13
Empirical evidence of animals used in biomedical research in unani medicine: An appraisal
Athar Parvez Ansari, N Zaheer Ahmed and Pervaiz Ahmad Dar
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The Unani system of medicine is principally based on humoural theory which was propounded by Hippocrates. According to this theory, health and disease depends on the equilibrium of four humours i.e. blood, phlegm, yellow bile and black bile. From the ancient times, experiment on animals has been part of research for so many discoveries in Unani system of medicine. The notable ancient Unani physicians such as Aristotle and Erasustratus have dissected animals for the study of anatomy and physiology of various organs. Both of them have been considered as pioneers of anatomy in medical science. The most notable ancient Unani physician Galen has also performed vivisections. He did experiment on roosters to evaluate the efficacy and safety of one of the most commonly used antidote i.e. tiryaq. Ibn al-Nafis described blood circulation in mammals. Razi had tested toxicity of mercury in monkeys. Ibn Zuhr, a most versatile physician had developed some surgical procedures in animals before applying them on human being. Presently, animals are integrally being used for the evaluation of safety and efficacy of drugs. The antiarrythmic property of Ajamline has been first tested in animals. Likewise, cardioprotective effect of Khamira abresham Hakim Arshad Wala has been evaluated in isoproterenol-induced myocardial necrosis in rats. All these studies amply prove that preclinical studies are also part of biomedical research in Unani medicine since its inception.