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UC San Francisco suit over live animal experiments

full story: id=308&volume_num=41&issue_num=44

Monkey suit
UC San Francisco suit over live animal experiments

Six doctors have filed a lawsuit against UC San Francisco over the way the school handles its live animal experiments.

Sponsored by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the suit alleges continuing violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act and asks for an independent monitor to be established to insure that the school follows the law.

The doctors say the school is misusing state money and call cardiac experiments on dogs conducted by Dr. Jeffrey Olgin "duplicative," meaning he's studying something that's already been scientifically established and the tests are therefore unnecessary.

Also criticized as inhumane are Alzheimer's disease experiments conducted by Dr. Stephen Lisberger (see "Monkey Business," 10/4/05), during which bolts are drilled into monkeys' brains without pain medication being administered.

"The experimenter invokes the potential for alleviating Alzheimer's disease, but the neural system (Lisberger) studies is not even involved in Alzheimer's disease," said one of the plaintiffs, Dr. Larry Hansen, a professor of neuroscience at UC San Diego.

UCSF issued a statement saying it "takes seriously the responsibility of working with animals and is committed to maintaining the highest standard of humane treatment in animal care and use." (Amanda Witherell)

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