Monday, June 27, 2011

Study: Psychiatric Disorders in Lab Chimpanzees Mirror Those in Human Trauma Survivors

Chimpanzees used in invasive experiments show symptoms of depression, anxiety, and compulsive behaviors similar to mood and anxiety disorders seen in traumatized humans, a new study shows. The findings, published June 16 in PLoS ONE, the Public Library of Science’s peer-reviewed journal, raise new ethical concerns about harmful experiments on chimpanzees. Study lead author Hope Ferdowsian, M.D., M.P.H., with the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) is urging Congress to consider these findings as it weighs the Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act.

“Chimpanzees clearly have the capacity to suffer mental and physical anguish, much as humans do,” says Dr. Ferdowsian, a practicing physician and director of research policy at PCRM. “We now know that a chimpanzee's mind and emotional well-being are affected by experimentation in ways that parallel the psychological trauma experienced by victims of torture and other forms of abuse. This makes it critically important for the United States to join the long list of countries that have ended invasive experiments on chimpanzees.”

Full story here.

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