发展对人类疾病有效的预测、预防、诊断和治疗等途径, 一直是人口健康领域关注的焦点。任何人类疾病似乎都可归咎于遗传背景和环境因素的共同作用，并影响到疾病的发生、病程、药物疗效和预后等。最有效的研究策略是直接针对患者的各方面临床研究, 但这一策略常常会面临着同一临床症状却有不同病因 (异质性)、个体差异显著 (如治疗效果因人而异) 以及难以回溯性地研究人类疾病的发生、发展 (如发病以前的事件或经历) 等问题, 而且医学伦理学的要求使得大量医学研究和新药新疗法不能直接应用于人体, 必须先有动物实验阐明其安全性和必要性。最佳的研究策略是创建人类疾病的动物模型, 因为可严格地控制病因、遗传背景、环境因子等, 也可跟踪性研究动物模型病症的发生、发展、治疗反应和结局等, 但这一策略也常常面临着一系列问题和误解。对此,在《动物学研究》出版《灵长类动物与人类疾病模型》专刊之际, 撰写此评述性论文, 将系列问题和误解一一提出, 并讨论其应对策略。
The development of efficient ways to predict, prevent, diagnose and treat human diseases is of great interest to human society and is a focus of life science research. It is widely believed that all human diseases may be attributed to the interaction between genetic and environmental risk factors, and this interaction influences the genesis, course, drug response and outcome of the diseases. The most effective approach for research into human diseases is the clinical study, but this can be hampered by disease heterogeneity, marked individual differences and the difficulty in tracking the history and course of a disease. Additionally, no study should be performed on humans without preclinical assessments in non-human animals. The best strategy for research into human diseases is to use animal models that mimic the genesis, course, drug response and outcomes of human disease and where the etiology, genetic background and environmental factors can be strictly controlled, unfeasible in clinical studies of humans. However, there are many problems associated with the study of animal models for human disease, some of which are based on misunderstanding. For this special issue of Zoological Research we discuss these problems and misunderstandings.