Animals In Print
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26 May 2010 Issue

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"Tell NASA to End Cruel Radiation Experiment on Monkeys"


Project R&R: Release and Restitution for Chimpanzees in US Laboratories

YOU Can Help Stop Cruel Radiation Experiments

NASA is funding space radiation studies that will be done on live squirrel monkeys. The plan ó which will cost $1.75 million ó was proposed by Jack Bergman, PhD of McLean Hospital in Belmont, MA. The monkeys will be exposed to radiation at Brookhaven National Laboratory and then be shipped to McLean Hospital where they will be made to perform tasks to test for cognitive impairment. These highly intelligent and social primates will be housed alone in steel cages for at least four years and be subjected to daily restraint in primate chairs.

So far, NASA has ignored all calls to halt the experiments, despite growing opposition to these cruel and scientifically flawed studies.

Genetic, physiological, and anatomical differences between humans and monkeys dramatically limit the conclusions that can be drawn from the planned studies.

Further, studies to test the effects of radiation on monkeys have been going on for decades even though ongoing studies, including those funded by NASA, already use non-animal methods to determine the effects of low-dose radiation on human tissues.

Please contact NASA Administrator Charles F. Bolden Jr., and ask him to put a stop to these cruel and unnecessary experiments. Administrator Bolden needs to hear from you.

Please call (202) 358-0000 or e-mail [email protected]  and let him politely know that:

You support the mission of NASA.
Space radiation studies involving the use of live animals are cruel and pointless.
Genetic and physiological differences between humans and monkeys make this research ineffectual.
Monkeys are sentient beings who experience pain and suffering.
The experiments are in direct violation of the NASA Principles for the Ethical Care and Use of Animals.
There are viable non-animal research methods that can, are, and should be used.

Thank You for your compassion, humanity and common sense.
Please continue standing up and speaking against the cruelty and speciesism toward non-humans.

In Solidarity
Gina Maltese

Quote FROM:: ""
Right now, NASA is planning to fund an experiment in which up to 30 squirrel monkeys will be exposed to radiation in experiments that have previously left monkeys with fatal cancers, including brain tumors. Ridiculous? Yes. Cruel? Definitely. NASA is supposed to be the definition of all things futuristic and coolónot the face of cruelty to animals.

What Is Radiation poisoning

Radiation poisoning, also called "radiation sickness", is damage to the (human or other animal) body from excessive exposure to ionizing radiation. The term is generally used to refer to acute problems caused by a large dosage of radiation in a short period. Many of the symptoms of radiation poisoning occurs as ionizing radiation interferes with cell division. This especially causes problems with rapidly dividing cells, such as intestinal cells. The symptoms of radiation poisoning include skin burns, fainting, fatigue, diarrhea, hair loss, and at extremely high dosages, death. An extremely high dose of radiation, such as 10,000 rads in a short period will cause unconsciousness and death as nerve cells are destroyed. A smaller dosage will cause immediate illness of fainting and fatigue, but the victim will appear to recover, only to die within days as the rapidly dividing intestinal cells fail. Exposure to 400 roentgens in a short period is fatal within a few days in approximately half the cases. If the victim survives the next few weeks, he or she is likely to recover, but will face an increased chance of cancer.

Chronic exposure to radiation can lead to leukemia and other cancers. Ironically, the ability of radiation to disturb cell division is also used to treat cancer.

Radiation poisoning can result from accidental exposure to natural or industrial radiation sources. People working with radioactive materials often wear film "badges" to monitor their total exposure to radiation.

Radiation poisoning caused illness and death after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and downwind of the atmospheric testing of the '50s, and was a major concern after the Chernobyl reactor accident.


Yesterday, a commenter by the name of Georg provided links to seven YouTube videos about ionizing radiation that he and Kansas State University members just created. After viewing them, I highly recommend for anyone to take a gander on over. The voice of the videos is alluring and the graphics are simple and creative. For me, the video on Quantities and Units of radiation (below) was the best of the seven. Understanding units of radiation is always tricky for me and Iím sure others. There are Sieverts, there are Rems, there are Becquerels and so on. The video explains it all quite lucidly.

PETA - NASA Protest

PETA _NASA Protest

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Please send comments and submittals to the Editor: Linda Beane [email protected]

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