Medical Research Scientists Everywhere (MRSE), the peak body for medical science, today signed a global agreement to stop using animals for medical research purposes and instead seek higher-function mammals as lab specimens. Test subjects named Mickey and Bubbles will soon be replaced by cyclists named Ricco and Pelota, who will gladly pay for the privilege. Cyclismas had the opportunity to interview MRSE spokesman Dr. Archibald Carter for details.
“This new protocol for testing has the potential to revolutionise medical research and how it is funded,” revealed Dr. Carter today from his base of operations in Spain.
“Rather than having the pharma companies monetarily remunerate humans for their involvement in medical trials as they traditionally do in later phases of research, cyclists will instead pay research organisations for their participation and be involved from the very start,” Dr. Carter said excitedly.
While a bold approach, Dr Carter is confident cyclists will pay to volunteer their bodies for science.
“Why not? Cyclists already pay to be guinea pigs and lab rats. As soon as they hear a drug like AICAR can shed kilos and seconds, they’re handing over their hard-earned euros and yuan faster than Cav can motorboat. This, in spite of the fact that they know it is not approved nor are its performance-enhancing benefits yet trialled in human studies.”
He continued, “They miss a couple of vital steps in the research process now, so it’s hard to believe they won’t want to skip them entirely. This way, they can steer clear of dodgy drug companies and come to trusted medical scientists from the outset, working with us to trial drugs that will ensure enhancements to their performance.”
Sources tell Cyclismas that this plan will see drugs released to the market quicker in order to benefit those who need it the most – sick people and athletes everywhere. But it comes with its challenges, not least of which is working with mostly humans at times when it was easier to work with animals.
Dr. Carter noted, “Sure, there will be the odd cyclist who will question the experiments and the side effects, just like Schleck questions Bruyneel when he’s made to go in the wind tunnel, but those mice and hamsters are starting to out think us anyway. So it’s much of a muchness.”
“Fortunately for us, I hear reports from our connections that young riders are so naïve they’ll queue up and swallow whatever their trusted bus driver, coach, or doctor puts in their mouths. And the older ones, well, they’re so focused on winning some yellow jumper or keeping their precious contracts they’ll take and do anything. I’ve seen lemmings less committed to their job. So perhaps I may get to adapt that old show biz adage to be “never work with cyclists and animals.” Dr Carter giggled.
Given these comparisons, cyclists may need a helping hand to become involved in this research.
“They currently have intermediaries who source their drugs because cyclists don’t know about money or the Internet, hell, some of them still can’t fill in their whereabouts forms. So we will look to these go-betweens such as Wim Vansevanant and Alberto Beltran with their many connections in cycling to help us recruit riders, elsewise they will never hear about us. Wim and Alberto could get a Nobel Prize for their contribution to medical science if they help us,” Dr. Carter elaborated.
But what about the niggling point of Beltran’s recent arrest as well as Vansevenant’s last year?
“That’s the beauty of this plan, they will be involved in the process so early, there won’t be any “drugs,” per se, to be illegal,” Dr. Carter paused. “Beltran losing his USB stick of contacts may hurt us though,” he continued.
Charities like LiveStrong were delighted by MRSE’s announcement.
“Cyclists’ quest to be the best will help provide another revenue stream for medical research and free up charities like ours to spend money where it is needed most – on awareness and copyright protection,” an unnamed spokesman said.
PETA representative Pamela Anderson also welcomed the news. “It’s about time. We’re so glad this has happened. It’s win-win for us, it’s win-win for MRSE with us off its back, and it’s win-win for the animals who can retire from the hamster wheel for a lifetime in my handbag. Now, if only cyclists could test makeup…” mused Ms Anderson.
“I do feel a little sorry for the cyclists though. We screamed at the MRSE about how they treated mice and other animals, who will scream for the cyclists? Fans? No. They will scream at the cyclists for how they will be treated,” Ms. Anderson contemplated.
Dr. Carter concluded by saying that once the level of success was determined among cyclists, the MRSE planned to extend recruitment of self-paying medical research volunteers to miners, stockbrokers, lawyers, and gym junkies. Soccer players will still somehow get it all for free.