Availability Of Monkeys For Research

In spite of their great value as models for studying mechanisms of infertility in primates, macaque monkeys suffer from one major drawback: they are not readily available in substantial numbers for this purpose. This is ironic, because the United States has the largest nonhuman primate research infrastructure in the world, in the form of the eight National Primate Research Centers supported by the NIH. Each of these centers has several thousand nonhuman primates, and rhesus monkeys comprise a large proportion of the total. However, the great demand for this species for AIDS-related research means that few animals are available for other kinds of research, including infertility studies. It may be time to ask if priorities for allocation of monkeys to research studies should be reassessed.

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