Update: May 4, 2016
The University of Louisiana’s New Iberia Research
Center has announced that it will retire all of its 220 research chimpanzees to
Project Chimps, a new sanctuary in Blue Ridge, Georgia. This is the first time
a non-federal program has decided to retire all of its chimpanzees. New Iberia ended
all invasive research on these chimpanzees in 2015.
Chimps is expected to accept its first residents as early as next month. The
remaining chimpanzees, including Leo and Hercules, will be transferred
in groups of up to 10 each over a period of two or more years. Congratulations
to New Iberia for its decision to end invasive research on these
chimpanzees—and for agreeing to subsidize their retirement to a sanctuary for
the rest of their days.
the retirement of New Iberia’s chimpanzees, 83 chimpanzees are still held in
privately owned laboratories: 26 at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson
Cancer Center (Keeling Center) and 56 at Yerkes National Primate Research
The September 2015 decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service to list all chimpanzees as an endangered species sets an even higher
standard for the use of these animals for harmful protocols. This makes the use
of chimpanzees costly and subject to new ethical criteria for their continued
use. At the same time, many non-animal models are being developed that are more
predictive in the kind of research that once relied on chimpanzees.
Now is the time to call upon the two remaining private laboratories to establish
a plan to retire their chimpanzees to an accredited sanctuary in the U.S.
October 22, 2013
While hundreds of chimpanzees are now eligible for retirement under the
new criteria established by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and accepted
by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), hundreds of other
chimpanzees are still subjected to invasive research at laboratories in
the U.S. These laboratories or university research departments use
chimpanzees that they own or that are owned by other private entities
that are not reliant on grants from the federal government for the
research they perform, thus making them exempt from the IOM criteria.
Most privately-owned chimpanzees used for research are owned by only
four institutions: Michale E. Keeling Center, New Iberia Research
Center, Southwest National Primate Research Center, and Yerkes National
Primate Research Center.
Some of these facilities house and use both privately-owned and
federally-owned or supported animals, but only those laboratories
supported by the federal government are subject to the IOM criteria and
have been studied by the NIH Working Group to determine if protocols
using chimpanzees should be continued. Once the federal chimpanzees have
been removed and retired to a sanctuary, the remaining chimpanzees will
continue to be subjected to their current protocols. Even more alarming
is the prospect that these chimpanzees will be used for new protocols
that will be even more harmful in an effort to make “full use” of
animals that are expensive to use and to keep. That may mean that these
chimpanzees would now be subjected to whatever research is
proposed—however horrific—if the proposal is accompanied by sufficient
monies to cover the cost of keeping chimpanzees no longer subsidized by
the federal government.
The conclusion of the IOM is that most research conducted on chimpanzees
is unnecessary and should be stopped. This should apply equally to
research conducted in private facilities, yet those institutions are not
obligated to comply with a matter that only applies to the federal
Call to action:
If you take action and have not already registered, you will receive periodic updates and communications from National Anti-Vivisection Society.
Please retire ALL chimpanzees used for invasive research
Dear [Decision Maker],
As you know, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has accepted, new criteria for the use of chimpanzees for both invasive and behavioral research that is resulting in the retirement of all of their chimpanzees used for invasive research. It is my belief that this should apply equally to research conducted in private facilities as well as research funded by federal taxpayer money.Furthermore, the September 2015 decision of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to list all chimpanzees as an endangered species sets an even higher standard for the use of these animals for harmful protocols, making the use of chimpanzees costly and subject to new ethical criteria for their continued use. At the same time, many non-animal models are being developed that are more predictive in the kind of research that once relied on chimpanzees. A sound investment in the future is an investment that does not rely on an animal model for disease when so many better choices exist now and will only get better in the future. Please consider the retirement of your remaining chimpanzees to a sanctuary where they can live out the remainder of their lives in a more natural and social setting after years of service to humankind.Thank you for your consideration,
Sincerely,[Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP]