An organization that sets standards for experimentation on animals across Canada has cleared a University of British Columbia research team of animal-cruelty allegations.
In a March 15 letter to the local group Stop UBC Animal Research, the Canadian Council on Animal Care said it could find “no evidence” of animal cruelty by Dr. Doris Doudet and her research team.
The Straight reported on March 1 that the euthanizing of four macaque monkeys following Parkinson’s disease research at UBC had sparked the outrage among local antivivisectionists.
“We’re calling for an end to animal research at the University of British Columbia and at all publicly funded institutions and private institutions,” Anne Birthistle, volunteer with Stop UBC Animal Research and codirector of the Animal Defense and Anti-Vivisection Society of B.C., told the Straight at the time. “We believe in the scientific data that shows animal research is hazardous to human health, and there are far better human-based, progressive approaches that we should be using.”
On February 22, Stop UBC Animal Research wrote the CCAC and demanded an investigation into the deaths of the monkeys.
In the letter copied to UBC vice president of research John Hepburn and other parties, CCAC executive director Clément Gauthier states: “CCAC certification indicates that the animal care and use program at the institution is in compliance with CCAC policies, guidelines, and other relevant standards.”
Hepburn says in a UBC news release issued today (March 19): “The CCAC vindicates the careful, humane and ethical way our researchers treat the animals in their care.”
Neither Birthistle nor Brian Vincent, director of Stop UBC Animal research, were immediately available to comment on the CCAC's finding.