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Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!
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"Exposing the truth to wipe out animal experimentation"

Articles and Reports

Letter to President Nathan Hatch of Wake Forest University


1081-B St. Rt. 28 PMB 280
Milford, Ohio 45150
513-575-5517
www.saenonline.org 

6/12/08

President Nathan O. Hatch
Wake Forest University
211 Reynolda Hall
P.O. Box 7226
Winston-Salem, NC 27109

President Hatch,

I am contacting you today in regard to experimental procedures used by several researchers at the Wake Forest University. The primary researcher in question is: Terrence R. Stanford. This research project uses macaque monkeys in procedures that are highly questionable from a scientific point of view, and are also highly stressful and painful for the primates.

For your information, this project involves literally bolting restraining bars and recording cylinders to their skulls, depriving primates of water for extended periods of time, and confining them to restraint chairs (see: J Neurophysiol 90: 2029-2052, 2003). According to statements from experts in veterinary medicine these procedures definitely cause pain and distress, and some experts even consider them to be unethical (see attachments).

I am concerned that these experiments may lead to Animal Welfare Act violations within Wake Forest University labs. As you know, according to the Animal Welfare Act:

Sec. 2.36 Annual report.

(7) State the common names and the numbers of animals upon which teaching, experiments, research, surgery, or tests were conducted involving accompanying pain or distress to the animals and for which the use of appropriate anesthetic, analgesic, or tranquilizing drugs would have adversely affected the procedures, results, or interpretation of the teaching, research, experiments, surgery, or tests. An explanation of the procedures producing pain or distress in these animals and the reasons such drugs were not used shall be attached to the annual report;

It is clear that the experiments of the project listed above would fall into the category of unrelieved pain and distress for the animals involved. Failure to accurately report this experiment to the USDA is a violation of the Animal Welfare Act.

I am also concerned that Wake Forest researchers may be violating regulations for proper watering of primates as a part of the experiment that utilizes water deprivation.

In light of these issues, I officially request that your office suspend this project while instituting an investigation to ascertain whether it is following all legal requirements. I also officially request the opportunity to tour the laboratories in question, and examine the veterinary records for the macaque monkeys used in this experiment.

I would also like to request a meeting with Wake Forest University officials to discuss the permanent elimination of such research practices at Wake Forest University. To prevent any confusion about these issues, the procedures that should be eliminated from all Wake Forest University laboratories are:

1. The use of food and/or water deprivation in non-human primates for any reason but pre-surgical fasting. Depriving non-human primates of sustenance for extended periods as is currently practiced at Wake Forest University laboratories is inhumane, unethical, and has been declared causative of pain and distress by scientific experts.

2. The surgical attachment of devices such as restraining bars and recording cylinders to the skulls of non-human primates. These devices have also been declared by experts to cause pain and or distress in primates.

3. The use of primate restraint chairs in projects involving non-human primates. These devices severely restrict the movement of primates and have been declared by experts to cause substantial distress.

Wake Forest University uses a over 1300 primates in experiments every year. I believe it is very likely that some of these animals are killed unnecessarily, when they could be retired to a primate sanctuary to live out their lives in a place that is designed to meet their needs. Therefore, I respectfully request that the Wake Forest University institute a fully funded retirement program for all primates that are not currently utilized in ongoing research projects.

I will look forward to your response within five business days.

With Respect For All Life,


Michael A. Budkie, A.H.T.,
Executive Director, SAEN

See also : Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC

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