Each week our two teenagers debate a hot topic. This week ... Ronald Ling Pak-ki, 18, SKH Bishop Mok Sau Tseng Secondary School First of all, I would like to say I have a lovely cat at home. Although I treat my cat like a family member, I definitely do not think animal testing should be banned. Animal testing has undoubtedly contributed to scientific research in many different respects. We make use of a great variety of animals to carry out experiments. For example, fruit flies are commonly used in genetics research. Larger animals are commonly used for cosmetics or drugs testing. Some accuse animal-testing organisations of ignoring animal rights. They insist that animal testing is unnecessary. But without the sacrifice of some animals, we would be unable to develop important new technologies like gene therapy, or find new vaccines to fight new diseases. I am not denying the importance of animal rights. All animal experimentation should cause as little suffering to animals as possible. The number of animals used should be minimised too. I believe that animal testing should be allowed to continue, with appropriate regulations and under tight supervision. Anthea Wong, 16, Hong Kong International School There is a common misconception that we humans are the only intelligent species on Earth. It may be true that animals are not as capable as humans. However they do experience emotions, just like humans. There is no doubt that a stop must be put to the use of animals for testing. They feel the pain and fear as we do. Just like humans, animals deserve to be valued and treated with respect. Aside from the fact that animal testing is cruel, it is unreliable. Human organs and their functions may differ from those of animals. For example, a vaccine may prevent a disease in rats, but not in humans. There are so many alternate ways to research, why choose animal testing? Do we have no pity for animals? Animal experimentation harms innocent lives, and should be banned.