Frankie [Francine] L. Trull is founder and president of the Foundation for Biomedical Research (FBR), the nation’s oldest and largest organization dedicated to advancing human and animal health by promoting public understanding and respect for the humane and responsible use of animals in medical and scientific research. She is also president of FBR’s sister organization, the National Association for Biomedical Research (NABR) , which advocates for sound public policy that recognizes the essential role of lab animals in biomedical research and discovery.Trull’s name regularly appears on op-eds in newspapers around the country. Another one was published in the Feb. 9, 2008 Capital Times newspaper in Madison, Wisconsin. It was titled: “Rats, mice are keys players in cutting edge-research.” Maybe it was written in response to the University of Wisconsin, Madison’s recent announcement that it wants to build a new gargantuan rat and mouse warehouse.
In 1995, Ms. Trull established Policy Directions Inc. and serves as president of the company whose goal is to serve private corporations and nonprofit organizations in addressing legislative and regulatory initiatives and influencing policy development.
A frequent guest speaker and media resource, Ms. Trull has written several articles about the importance of biomedical research and the threat posed to the American research community by animal activism. She has been honored by the Society for Neuroscience, and in 1990 received the Distinguished Leadership Award from the Endocrine Society.
Ms. Trull received her undergraduate degree from Boston University and her Master’s degree from Tufts University.
Trull appeals to our natural concern for the welfare of children and makes wild and unfounded claims about the utility of using rats and mice, but doesn’t get to her main point until the end of her letter:
But one of the major obstacles to future medical advances is animal rights extremists, who are becoming the flat-worlders of the modern science movement. Because they oppose all animal research for all reasons, they are a serious roadblock to medical progress. If we are truly passionate about our children having a better future, are we willing to compromise the promise of improved treatments and cures achieved through humane and responsible animal research? Are we willing to sacrifice the prospect of eradicating disease in the name of animal rights extremism?Actually, the major obstacle to future medical advances is the dismal progress being made by basic medical science – largely based on animal models:
As the future horizon of science and medicine comes into focus, should we allow the myopic vision of a few flat-world extremists to force the planet to forgo medical discovery?
The Institute of Medicine at the National Academies of Science convened a Clinical Research Roundtable in 2000 to analyze the success of basic research. They reported in 2003 that there is a “disconnection between the promise of basic science and the delivery of better health.” And that unless new strategies are enacted, the “data and information produced by the basic science enterprise will not result in a tangible public benefit.” The Journal of the American Medical Association characterized the report as not worded strongly enough.Simply, the massive increase in funding that has resulted in the likely large increase in the numbers of animals used has had little appreciable effect on human healthcare. The suffering of the millions of animals being used annually is not advancing medical care. See: An argument for ending the use of animals in biomedical research.
Actually, Frankie Trull isn’t concerned with medical research or children; she’s focused narrowly on criticism of anyone or any group that speaks out for animals or unregulated corporate greed. And she does this because she’s paid to do so. Policy Directions, Inc. reported nearly $7,000,000 in income between 1998-2004.
According to the Center for Public Integrity’s online database LobbyWatch, Policy Directions Inc. lobbies for a number of companies and groups with clear financial interests in the marketing and consumption of animals for various reasons. These include:
1) Nestlé USA Inc. (The most boycotted brand in the UK because of its “unethical use and promotion of formula for babies in third world countries.” Nestlé won a global Internet poll for the world’s “least responsible company.” [So much for Trull's false appeal to a normal person's concern for children.]
2) Pharmaceutical Research & Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) [See SourceWatch]
3) Baylor University
4) Merck & Co.
5) American Feed Industry Association
6) Altria Group Inc
7) National Association for Biomedical Research [Apparently hiring herself.]
8) State University of New York
9) Amgen Inc.
10) Genzyme Corp.
11) Baxter Healthcare Corp.
12) U.S. ONCOLOGY
13) Society for Neuroscience
15) National Renderers Association
16) Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals
17) Procter & Gamble Co.
18) American College of Neuropsychopharmachology
19) Grocery Manufacturers of America
20) Pharmavite LLC
21) Turner Strategies
23) Cellerant Therapeutics
24) Depression & Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA)
25) Genelabs Technologies, Inc
26) Eli Lilly and Co.
27) Visx Inc
28) Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
29) Orphan Medical, Inc.
30) Biotech Coalition
31) Covance Inc.
32) Bayer Corp.
33) Animal Health Institute
34) Cosmetic, Toiletry & Fragrance Association
35) Ostex International
36) Biological Product Coalition
37) Adams Laboratories, Inc.
38) Alan Ritchey Inc
39) Aksys Ltd.
40) Anthra Pharmaceuticals
41) Autocyte 0
42) Bausch & Lomb
43) Britz - Heidbrink
44) Cephalon Inc.
45) Health Policy Strategies
46) Cp Pharmaceuticals, Ltd.
47) Medical Foods
48) Oregon Poultry Farmers
49) Sensormatic Electronics
50) Schwarz Pharma
51) Quest Diagnostics Inc.
52) Society of the Plastics Industry
53) Visible Genetics Inc.
54) Transkaryotic Therapties, Inc
55) Sequus Pharmaceuticals
56) Privacomp. Inc.com
57) Pfizer Inc.
58) Intuitive Surgical
59) Instrumentation Metrics
62) Burger King Corp.
63) Biotechnology Industry Organization
64) Barr Laboratories Inc.
65) Athena Neurosciences
60) Image Guided Technologies, Inc.
61) Elan Corporation
Some people will say and do anything if the price is right.