Seattle Times’ Asia Fields reports that the federal government has issues a citation against the University of Washington after the death of a research monkey that was accidently strangled in April. This is the third such incident since February 2016 at the UW lab. In a newly built $142 million underground facility, the lab conducts pre-clinical animal studies related to human health and neuroscience on hundreds of monkeys. The recent deaths have caught the attention of animal rights groups such as Stop Animal Exploitation Now (SAEN).
A recent USDA inspection report of the UW facility describes the incident. The university self reports all such incidents and has taken action to avoid this type of accident. A well-trained staff, proper, integrated system-quality assurance and commitment to continuous improvement represent a fundamental underpinning to all pre-clinical and clinical research. We have no doubt as to UW’s commitment to quality, continuous improvement and humane treatment of any species in pre-clinical research. These accidents are unfortunate, and based on the Seattle Times article, UW has taken mitigation measures. If not, the federal government and animal rights activists will take action.