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Vivisection is surgery conducted upon a living organism, typically animals with a central nervous system.
A broader interpretation includes non-behavioral experimental research involving living animals. In this interpretation, the term is preferred by those opposed to research using animals, as there it implies otherwise avoidable suffering. In the scientific community, vivisection for living tissue study has been superseded by modern techniques, and the term "animal experimentation" is applied to all research involving animal studies, regardless of mortality. Non-arbitrary research requiring vivisection techniques that cannot be met through other means are subject to an external ethics review in conception and implementation. Although vivisection is restricted to cancer and other malignant disease research, the distinction between humanitarian and commercial goals remains a contentious issue.