[Christian Science Monitor]

The prospect of animal testing in a company laboratory provokes residents in Chandler, Ariz.
Chandler, Ariz. - Little did officials in Chandler - one of the fastest-growing cities in the country - know the resistance they would meet in trying to retool their city's plan for attracting future business prospects.

When Covance, a multinational drug-testing company, elected to build a $44 million laboratory here - where it will test chemical and medical compounds on animals - residents, as well as national and international animal rights groups, mounted a vigorous campaign to block it.

At least two groups have formed that lead protests, marches, and educational sessions for neighborhood gatherings. And the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM), a Washington organization whose goal is to find an alternative to animal testing, is backing one of the groups in a lawsuit against the city of Chandler.

"I've never seen anything like this," says Dave Bigos, assistant to the mayor and Chandler City Council. "We have not only local people and organizations expressing their views, but national and international organizations, too."

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