FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, October 28, 2003
Contact: Michael Budkie, SAEN 513/575-5517
Harvard, Wisconsin Labs Accused Of 'Lying' To USDA Over Use Of Animals In 'Painful' Experiments
CINCINNATI - A national research watchdog organization
said today it has filed an "official complaint" against Harvard
University and the University of Wisconsin for performing
painful/stressful experimentation on primates without anesthesia - and
lying to federal regulators (USDA) about it.
The complaint is the result of investigations performed to produce a
national report on primate experimentation - "The Primate
Experimentation Scandal, 2003," which will be released this week.
The report, based on internal government documents reveals that U.S.
labs confine nearly 100,000 primates per year at an estimated cost to
the federal government of more than $530 million.
"Officials of the New England Primate Research Center are performing
highly invasive and painful/stressful experiments on primates and lying
about it to the USDA," said Michael A. Budkie, A.H.T., Executive
Director of SAEN.
"Experiments at Harvard subject primates to addictive drugs, confinement
in restraint chairs, and total social isolation (which is known to cause
insanity in primates). Yet, Harvard believes these experiments do
not cause pain or distress."
Government documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act
reveal that as many as 605 primates at Harvard may be experiencing
"On one hand they say that the experiments are too
invasive/painful to be performed on humans, and yet they also say that
these same projects don't cause primates any pain or distress. You can't
have it both ways," he said.
At Wisconsin, internal government and university documents 109 primates
at the UW were used in potentially painful/stressful experiments. Post
mortem records indicate that another 29 primates died of severe chronic
and/or traumatic conditions.
"When we are discussing primates who are emaciated, have a total lack
body fat, and have suffered from diseases like pneumonia, encephalitis
or meningitis, then we are definitely discussing primates who have
experienced pain and distress," added Budkie. The report is available at