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Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!
S. A. E. N.
"Exposing the truth to wipe out animal experimentation"

Articles and Reports

Prepared Statement: Animal Care at the Washington National Primate Research Center

During the 2004 – 2005 fiscal year the Washington National Primate Research Center brought over $260 million to the University of Washington, Seattle. This facility contains 1186 primates, as of November, 2005.

Animal Care for primates within the University of Washington has long been a concern. And so the current situation regarding primates within this facility has been evaluated by examining post-mortem records for 135 primates that died during a period of 17 months.

In general, the primates at this facility appear to be highly stressed. Indicators of high levels of stress include high rates of gastro-intestinal tract disease (30%), hair loss from over grooming (10.4%), as well as the existence of ulcers and primates who have lost fingers, presumably due to fighting.

It is also clear that these primates are often very seriously ill. 29% (39) of the animals who died were in inadequate nutritional condition ranging from thin to severely emaciated. This indicates that these animals have been left to suffer from disease for far too long of a period of time. 30% of these animals suffered from colitis, often severe and ulcerative. 18% suffered from enteritis and 17% suffered from gastritis.

The incidence of encephalitis and meningitis are also extremely high, including 15% of the primates (20) who died at this facility. This may be due to the high level of neurologically oriented experimentation which is underway at the Washington National Primate Research Center.

Specific animals who died at this facility also raise serious questions regarding the quality of veterinary care and husbandry at the Washington National Primate Research Center. Primate Z99081 was found dead, with no mention of previous treatment or veterinary care. This primate was assigned to Eberhard Fetz. This animal, who was used in neurological research, died of suppurative encephalitis. This condition is likely directly related to the variety of experimentation in which he was used. The brain of this animal had reached a state of necrosis, or deterioration. This is clearly due to negligence on the part of the staff of the University of Washington.

Primate 04090 was also used in neurological research, and had a “head cap” and a spinal implant, as well as wires run under the skin of the arm and connected to muscles. The animal had developed paralysis of the arm and compression of the spinal column, again directly related to the variety of experimentation in which this animal was used.

Primate A03068 had a severely deteriorated leg, having lost 40 – 50% of the muscle mass. This muscle loss is due to deterioration of the left hip joint, the joint contained a mixture of synovial fluid and blood. The bone had eroded sufficiently to have developed a flat head. This condition was not reached overnight and also shows no evidence of treatment.

Primate 91386 was found upon examination to have a 3 – 5 mm mass of connective tissue, which upon cutting revealed a piece of surgical gauze that had apparently been lost during surgery. Primate 02049 died of sepsis, or massive bacterial infection.

Possibly most interesting is the case of primate A01136. The cause of death for this animal was never determined because the researcher, in whose experimentation this animal was used, had cut off the primates’ head and refused to allow the veterinary staff of the UW to examine it, despite a specific request for this vitally important organ. This primate was used in the research of Dr. Albert Fuchs. We must begin to wonder what Dr. Fuchs had to hide.

The conditions of the animals at this facility are clearly cause for concern because they elucidate an overall situation in which the primates are clearly severely stressed. However, the apparent negligence of UW staff in killing primates through allowing encephalitis and/or meningitis to become a part of neurological research calls into question not only the humaneness of experimentation at this facility, but also the scientific value of information obtained from experimenting on clearly ill animals.

Therefore, SAEN will be contacting the United States Department of Agriculture with a demand for an immediate investigation of the research of Dr.s Perlmutter, Fetz, and Fuchs. We will ask for the most severe penalties allowable under current law.

Go to Facility Reports and Information: University of Washington, Seattle
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