The University of Washington (UW) doesn’t want the public to know what goes on at its massive, secretive underground monkey laboratory, hidden in Seattle. But we won’t let it keep taxpayers from knowing the truth.
At a recent public meeting, an official at UW claimed that experiments on monkeys conducted at the failing Washington National Primate Research Center (WaNPRC) were directly responsible for Moderna’s promising COVID-19 vaccine. It was a lie.
PETA was there to catch it, and now we’re calling for an investigation.
Jane Sullivan, head of the UW’s Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee—which is tasked with overseeing the “ethical” use of animals at the facility—read the false statement at the opening of the committee’s November 19 meeting:
“So, first I want to update you about the Fuller Lab’s novel RNA-based vaccine, which I told you about in August. This is the Moderna vaccine, which was reported earlier this week to be 94.5% effective in phase three clinical trials that ran in parallel with the monkey research.”
“This is tremendously exciting news,” she added. And tremendously false, too.
PETA science adviser Dr. Lisa Jones-Engel, who attended the meeting, pressed Sullivan for clarification. Visibly rattled, Sullivan refused to answer, saying Jones-Engel could read the transcript of her comments when they came out at some point in the future. Sullivan then said Jones-Engel could e-mail her.
Later, in a private e-mail exchange, Sullivan admitted to Jones-Engel that her statement was indeed false.
“Misstatements, inappropriate representations, and out and out falsehoods—particularly when they occur in the context of issues as sensitive as COVID-19 vaccines—are an egregious violation of the public trust,” Jones-Engel wrote in a letter to the federal oversight agency requesting the investigation.
Sullivan’s lie was not an off-the-cuff comment; she read it from a written statement. Someone thought about it and wrote it for release at this meeting. Was it designed to imply that the monkey torment that goes on at the WaNPRC is somehow immediately relevant to human health? Are officials trying to distract from PETA’s recently released footage of the center’s abysmal caging of monkeys? That’s what we’d like to know.
Here’s What We Know for Certain
The WaNPRC is a colossal, taxpayer-funded failure. This latest episode shows how far experimenters there will go to deceive the public into believing that the cruel and useless experiments they perform on monkeys have any meaningful chance to advance our understanding of human health, despite 60 years of proof to the contrary. Don’t fall for their lies.
Please join thousands of PETA supporters in calling for the immediate closure of the WaNPRC and the release of the monkeys to reputable sanctuaries where they’ll be afforded the safety and dignity that they deserve for the rest of their lives.