Tuesday, December 8, 2009

In honor of World Aids Day

Project R&R: Release and Restitution for Chimpanzees in U.S. Laboratories

Yoko © Fauna Foundation (see story below)

In Honor of World AIDS Day

"I have lost friends, teachers, and colleagues to this disease. Today I watch with those who are waiting for a cure. In loving recognition, I ask that we move towards humane and scientifically superior research that will give all of us the promise of an end to HIV/AIDS." - Karen S., NEAVS staff

NEAVS/Project R&R continues to advocate for better science. In honor of World AIDS Day, a day of international awareness about HIV and AIDS, we are asking our supporters to reach out to their Representatives in support of the Great Ape Protection Act (H.R.1326), a bill to end chimpanzee research.Great http://www.releasechimps.org/mission/change-laws/the-great-ape-protection-act/

Why today?

The use of chimpanzees was once hailed as “the key” to a cure for AIDS. Yet AIDS continues to kill millions worldwide, in spite of the large number of chimpanzees bred and historically used in HIV/AIDS research. http://www.releasechimps.org/harm-suffering/research-current/hivaids-debacle/

Today, HIV research using chimpanzees represents an extremely small, nearly non-existent percent of all HIV research – an admission by scientists that the chimpanzee model of AIDS/HIV is a failure. Still, a few studies backed by federal funding continue.

Please contact your legislator and ask them to support the Great Ape Protection Act (H.R. 1326) by signing on as a cosponsor. If they have already signed on as a cosponsor, please thank them.

To find your legislator, click here : http://neavs.convio.net/site/PageServer?pagename=FindElectedOfficials
To see if they are already signed on, click here. http://my.neavs.org/site/DocServer/2009_great_ape_cosponsors.pdf?docID=161

Despite the failure of chimpanzee use to prevent or cure HIV/AIDS, some researchers are calling for a return of their use to study the disease. “An Assessment of the Role of Chimpanzees in AIDS Vaccine Research,” http://www.releasechimps.org/pdfs/chimpanzees-and-human-cancer-research.pdf published in 2008 and authored by Project R&R’s Science Director and geneticist Jarrod Bailey, Ph.D., investigated chimpanzees use in HIV/AIDS vaccine development. This paper: http://www.releasechimps.org/flawed-science/dangerous-and-unnecessary/the-case-to-end-chimpanzee-research/ demonstrated that a return to chimpanzee use would be not only non-productive, but even counterproductive to scientific progress in preventing and conquering AIDS.

Touched by HIV/AIDS:
the story of one HIV research survivor

Purchased from a circus at age 7, Yoko http://www.releasechimps.org/chimpanzees/their-stories/yoko/was sent to the Laboratory for Experimental Medicine and Surgery in Primates in 1981. He was used extensively in research and infected with both HIV and hepatitis C – today he tests negative for both. Why? Although HIV can replicate in their bodies, chimpanzees infected with HIV do not become sick with symptoms of AIDS.

Now in sanctuary at Fauna, Yoko has become very social and can often be found in a grooming circle of friends. A fast runner who loves to play chase, he is a very small adult male, but what he lacks in size he makes up for in personality.

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