USDA Cites Princeton For Primate Research Violations

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USDA Cites Princeton For Primate Research Violations

From, June 12, 2011

PRINCETON, N.J. -- The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has cited Princeton University for violating federal regulations regarding the treatment of primates used in its research, the Times of Trenton reported Sunday.

Results of inspections conducted by the USDA in February and April showed the university committing six violations, mostly centered on the primate's watering schedule.

Princeton's primate facility houses 15 macaques and 10 marmosets, whose brains and behavior are studied by neuroscientists.

Princeton spokesman Martin Mbugua said the instance of primate forced to go without water for more than 24 hours was the result of a communication breakdown. "We have taken steps to prevent a recurrence," he said.

Mbugua also sought to clarify that the citations stemmed from "record-keeping."

"As clearly stated in the USDA reports, the majority of the citations were for deficiencies in record-keeping, not for the research protocols or the experiments themselves," the paper quoted Mbugua as saying.

Michael A. Budkie, executive director of the Cincinnati-based organization Stop Animal Exploitation Now (SAEN), said Princeton was "among the worst" in its violations of federal regulations.

"The treatment of animals at this facility illustrates attitudes of carelessness and negligence that must be punished so that meaningful changes can be made," he said.

The report marks the second straight year Princeton has been cited for its handling of research primates. A June 2010 inspection of Princeton revealed 11 violations of federal guidelines, including insufficient water levels and failing to provide the primates with sufficient painkillers after surgeries, the report said.

See also: Princeton University, Princeton, NJ

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