Mobile PETA Video in Experimenter’s Neighborhood Spotlights Monkey’s NIH Misery

For Immediate Release:
July 28, 2022

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382


National Institutes of Health (NIH) experimenter Elisabeth Murray torments monkeys by day and then goes home to a peaceful condo complex at night. But this routine was interrupted on Thursday by a video message from PETA—displayed on the side of a truck—informing her neighbors what exactly she does to the monkeys locked up in her laboratory.

The video tells the story of Beamish, who has been imprisoned in a cramped steel cage at NIH since 2007 and was transferred to Murray’s laboratory in 2010. Murray cut open Beamish’s skull, suctioned out a portion of his brain, and destroyed another part of his brain with toxic chemical injections. Then she terrified him with realistic rubber spiders and snakes, which trigger some of a monkey’s worst fears. Held in solitary confinement, Beamish has experienced extensive hair loss (an indicator of extreme psychological stress) and has repeatedly been documented circling in his cage or rocking back and forth—indications of a severe mental breakdown.

Murray has received more than $50 million in taxpayer funding since 1998, despite failing to produce even one treatment or cure for humans. Beamish and many of the other monkeys in her laboratory are caged alone, condemned to social isolation that causes profound psychological and physiological distress.

The mobile message is the latest action in PETA’s campaign to end Murray’s notorious “monkey fright” experiments, which has included critiques of her shoddy science; complaints of mistreatment of animals to authorities; advertisements in The Washington Post, The Washington Times, and the Washington Examiner; spirited demonstrations targeting government agencies; and visits around the city from a giant “monkey” mascot named after the real Beamish.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—condemns speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.


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