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Press Releases

Watchdog group accuses UC Davis of negligence in weekend primate deaths; calls for independent probe


Monday, August 23, 2004

Contact: SAEN National 513.575-5517

Attention: News Desk

DAVIS - A national research watchdog group Monday released a statement accusing the University of California, Davis staff of negligence following the deaths of seven cynomolgous monkeys this past weekend.

SAEN, a Cincinnati-based non-profit organization, is also calling for an independent investigation into the circumstances which lead to the deaths of the primates, and a suspension of experiments at the university.

"The deaths of these animals should be sufficient cause for the immediate suspension of all experimental procedures until an independent investigation of this incident can be completed," said Michael A. Budkie, A.H.T., SAEN's Executive Director.

"Any internal examination of the circumstances surrounding this incident will without doubt be nothing more than a whitewash," he said in a statement.

Earlier this month, SAEN filed an official complaint against the laboratories at UC Davis, accusing the lab of performing painful experiments on primates without benefit of anesthesia and lying about the experiments to federal agencies.

The watchdog organization also announced that investigative staff are currently in the process of obtaining internal documents from Davis officials regarding both experimental procedures and primate care.

"This situation has underscored the obvious need for more oversight of laboratories. Since the current authorities, both internal and external, are clearly inadequate, we will continue our investigation of the use and abuse of primates at UC Davis,' added Budkie. "Results of this investigation will be revealed within a few months."

For a full statement please contact call SAEN at 513/575-5517


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