PETA: Monkeys tormented in UW labs; PETA exhibit to show dark history of animal experiments

Madison, Wis. — Because the University of Wisconsin–Madison is home to the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center (WNPRC)—where experimenters have cut into monkeys’ skulls, injected toxic agents into their brains, sucked out their brain tissue, and killed them—PETA is bringing its free, eye-opening exhibit “Without Consent” to the city this week, just in time for the university’s first day of class. 

When:            September 7–11, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Where:          800 State St. (at the intersection of State Street and E. Campus Mall, on the southern perimeter of Library Mall), Madison 

On display for just five days, “Without Consent” links historical experiments on vulnerable humans—including orphans, immigrant women, soldiers, and impoverished Black men—to the troubled history of experiments on nonconsenting animals, via 24 panels bearing descriptions and photographs of nearly 200 tests conducted at U.S. institutions in recent decades. 

Among other recent experiments at the WNPRC experimenters dosed days-old monkeys with drugs and killed them just hours later, infected macaque monkeys with dengue and Zika viruses, and injected rhesus and patas monkeys with hemorrhagic viruses—causing some of the animals to suffer from bleeding gums, tremors, motor dysfunction, facial swelling, and lymph node disease.

After 60 years, 16,000 dead monkeys, and $666 million in taxpayer funding, the WNPRC has produced zero cures for human diseases. PETA’s six-month undercover investigation into the WNPRC revealed, among other horrors, monkeys so traumatized by fear and barren living conditions that they pulled out their own hair. See the video footage here. 

Other animals have suffered in Wisconsin laboratories, too. Last year, 5,962 dogs were used in experiments and an additional 3,823 were held in laboratory facilities there—the second-highest numbers of all U.S. states. These facilities include Labcorp—formerly Covance—where experimenters thrust thick plastic gavage tubes down dogs’ throats to force-feed them pharmaceutical drugs and industrial chemicals. 

“‘Without Consent’ tells the true stories of monkeys and other animals who were harmed and killed in experiments that they did not and could not consent to,” says PETA Vice President Dr. Alka Chandna. “Humans are only one animal species among many, and having the power to exploit the others does not give us the right to do so.” 

PETA is calling on the National Institutes of Health—which gave Wisconsin laboratories $560 million in taxpayer funds in 2021—to phase out animal experiments and adopt the group’s Research Modernization Deal

An interactive virtual exhibit is available here. PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview.

For more information on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on TwitterFacebook, or InstagramContact:Amanda Hays 702-715-1557; [email protected]