Primate experimentation in the U.S. is out of control. All-time high
69,990 primates are imprisoned in US labs for experimentation – a five
year increase of 31%. An equal amount are held captive for breeding,
making the total closer to 120,000. We estimate that funding for primate
experimentation has also increased reaching $1.6 billion during fiscal
2007. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is responsible for most of
this waste. Experimentation on primates is funded by several federal
agencies including NIH, the National Science Foundation, and the
Department of Defense.
Many different species of primates including macaque monkeys,
squirrel monkeys, baboons, and chimpanzees are experimented on in many
different ways. Macaque monkeys are used most often, with baboons second
and squirrel monkeys third.
Isolation is severely stressful to primates. In fact, 10% of isolated
primates are so severely stressed that they begin to engage in
self-injurious behavior. Many different psychological experiments also
stress primates severely. Many primates suffer terribly inside labs
across the U.S.
Harvard – 2100 primates imprisoned; 55% infant
mortality rate; over 300 primates in solitary confinement; many
exhibiting signs of pathological behavior.
University of California, Davis – 7700 primates
confined, records for 400 monkeys revealed 403 traumatic injuries, 143
amputations, along with 387 wounds, 221 bites, 70 abrasions, 171
lacerations, and 40 fractures. Experiments confine primates to restraint
chairs and use water deprivation.
Wake Forest – imprisons over 1000 primates; monkeys are
socially isolated, deprived of sleep and subjected to addiction drugs.
University of Wisconsin Madison -- (UW) imprisons
approximately 1500 primates. Primates escape from cages severely
injuring other animals. Other monkeys suffer with brain abscesses due to
the bolting of devices into the bones of the skull.
University of California, San Francisco – Over 100
primates incarcerated; government documents reveal primates deprived of
water for as much as 22 hours per day. Monkeys lose over 15% of their
body weight and self mutilate in neurological experiments.
Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research –
imprisons over 5700 primates; recently cited for beginning post-mortem
dissection of a baboon that was not yet dead.
University of Washington, Seattle – Over 2200 primate
imprisoned. Recently cited for performing unapproved surgical procedures
– one researcher entirely removed the head of a primate.
Johns Hopkins University – confines over 800 primates;
monkeys are used in drug addiction experiments and brain mapping
projects which force electrodes directly into the brain of conscious
University of Minnesota – imprisons over 180 primates;
drug addiction experiments during which primates are so stressed that
they rip out their own hair while screaming; other monkeys are deprived
of water and socially isolated.
Charles River Laboratories – Recently cooked 32
primates to death due to heating malfunction; also improper handling of
primates resulted in the injury & amputation of fingers due to
Vanderbilt University – Dozens of primates used in
brain mapping experiments; one illegally deprived of water and used in
brain-scraping procedure without anesthesia.
University of Michigan – over 300 primates
incarcerated; 42 used in painful experiment involving dipping the tail
into 131 degree water without any pain relief; monkeys spend decades in
drug addiction studies, isolated from members of their own species and
connected to metal spring arms.
Many diseases and conditions plague the primates that are held
captive within laboratories, such as: meningitis, pneumonia,
encephalitis, hepatitis, and gastric bloat. Monkeys often lose fingers,
toes, and tails through amputation.
Common experimental practices include depriving primates of food or
water so that these things become effective rewards. In some instances,
the primates may receive water for only an hour or two per day, or are
deprived of as much as 20% of their regular food intake.
The use of primate restraint chairs is also common, with confinement
reaching as much as 104 consecutive hours. These devices are highly
stressful for normally active and mobile primates. In brain mapping
experiments many devices are literally bolted onto the skulls of
primates, and electrodes are fed directly into the brain. Intravenous
catheters are surgically implanted in experiments with addictive drugs.
These devices can lead to serious infections, and other potentially
Most primates are not used in experiments that study the diseases
that kill most Americans. Projects that study primate psychology,
alcohol & addictive drugs, brain-mapping, and sex in primates far
outnumber studies involving heart disease or cancer.
Repetition is rampant among NIH-funded projects. Currently, the National
Eye Institute funds 57 projects that use primates in brain-mapping.
These duplicative experiments waste over $110 million every five years.
Many of these projects continue on for decades wasting millions of tax
dollars each year and victimizing primates for an entire lifetime.
What you can do to help:
1. Read, copy, and distribute this fact sheet.
2. Write to your federal legislators to request a General Accounting
Office (GAO) investigation of National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515
Washington, D.C. 20510
3. Send as large a tax-deductible donation
as you can afford to Stop Animal Exploitation NOW! (SAEN) to support
donation will help us to continue fighting for the freedom of these
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