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Fate Of Monkeys

The Fate Of Indonesian Monkeys In The Research Laboratory

The following are examples from the USA and Japan of experiments carried out with monkeys imported from Indonesia:

Wake Forest University in North Carolina, USA:

Many of the experiments involved alcohol (ethanol) consumption and its effect on the monkeys' body or behavior. This was often combined with the surgical mutilation of female monkeys - the removal of their ovaries - or deliberately feeding the animals a diet that would cause atherosclerosis. Other experiments focused on the effects of dietary modulation on monkeys who were fed a diet causing atherosclerosis. In most of these cases, the situations were supposed to mimic dietary life-style of Americans. In some of the studies, all the animals were killed (or died) as part of the experiment.

Ninety-five male monkeys were obtained from the Primate Research Center, Bogor, Indonesia. About 20% of them died due to "chronic diarrhea" before the experiment even began. An additional sixteen monkeys had to be imported from Indonesia. The monkeys were fed an atherogenic diet (designed to cause atherosclerosis or plaque to build up in blood vessels) which included lard, butter and beef tallow. They were also forced to run on a motorized wheel for up to 30 minutes at a time. As part of the experiment, they were housed in a way to deliberately cause an unstable social situation, which is known to exacerbate the atherosclerosis. All the monkeys were killed as part of the experiment.

Fifty-one adult female monkeys were subjected to major abdominal surgery to remove their ovaries. They were then given a diet that was designed to cause atherosclerosis. During part of this time, they were given alcohol. Although most drank voluntarily once "trained", nine animals had to be restrained and forced to swallow the alcohol. Three animals died during the experiment and 48 animals were killed.

Thirty-six adult female monkeys were subjected to major abdominal surgery to remove their ovaries. They were then fed a diet designed to cause atherosclerosis and housed in a way to deliberately cause stress and depression (small steel cages, with no way to get away from dominant individuals). Over one-half of those individuals who became depressed died (nine deaths). A cause for death was not always found, but included trauma, death after sedation and metabolic illness.


Shipments of monkeys to laboratories

Countries to have imported macaques from Indonesia in recent years include the USA, China, Japan, Korea and Singapore. Between 2006 and 2008, the following companies have imported primates from Indonesia:

Charles River Laboratories, Nevada, USA
Primate Products, Florida, USA
SNBL USA Ltd, Everett, Washington, USA
Wake Forest University, North Carolina, USA
CLEA, Japan
Aritake Chojuten Co Ltd, Japan
Tianjin Jinxin Import and Export Corporation, China
Hainan Jingang Laboratory Animal Company, China

Information obtained by the BUAV has shown that some of the primates exported from Indonesia to the USA have been subjected to extremely long transit times, by road and air, sometimes taking days to complete. On 22nd June 2006, a shipment of 150 primates was flown out of Jakarta, on a Philippine Airlines flight, to San Francisco via Manila in the Philippines. At Manila, the monkeys had to wait almost nine hours before making a connecting flight to San Francisco. In the USA, the final leg of the journey, 3,133 miles to Primate Products in Miami, Florida, was completed by road and was estimated to take around 72 hours, arriving on 25th June. This is a total transit time of around 96 hours or four days. During this time, the monkeys would have been packed into small wooden crates (usually too small to allow them to comfortably stand up). These transportation conditions cause stress and suffering for these sensitive animals. In addition to the cramped conditions, the monkeys may have to endure inadequate ventilation, noise and extreme temperature fluctuations. Flights may also be delayed en route at airports where food and water may not be available

Philippine Airlines, Korean Air and China Southern airlines have been responsible for transporting primates from Indonesia to research facilities around the world.