Update: Based on PETA
complaints documenting abuse and neglect of animals in the University of Texas
Medical Branch at Galveston’s laboratories, the U.S. Department of Agriculture
has taken the rare step of fining
the facility $9,143 for egregious violations of the federal Animal
Welfare Act—including failing to supply veterinary care to a sheep who had been
used in experimental back surgery and could not stand up, failing to supply
adequate veterinary care to a goat who died on an operating table, and failing
to supply post-procedural pain relief to three sheep used in experimental

Originally posted on May 24th:

We’ve told you previously how the University of Texas
Medical Branch (UTMB) in Galveston was cited by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) after PETA filed a complaint detailing the egregious abuse of animals in its laboratories. After obtaining internal documents revealing hellish
conditions for animals in laboratories at the facility, PETA filed another
complaint earlier this year—and now UTMB
has been cited for the second time in 15
for flagrant violations of the Animal Welfare Act
, including
failure to provide sick and injured animals with adequate veterinary care.

Can’t Stop, Won’t
Stop—’Til the Truth Comes Out

Following the initial successful complaint to the USDA (based
on information provided by a laboratory insider), PETA submitted a Texas Freedom of Information Act request to UTMB asking for
documents related to the treatment of animals in its laboratories. UTMB
initially tried to use various legal exemptions to avoid releasing the records,
but PETA’s attorneys successfully argued the case, leading the Texas attorney general
to order UTMB to hand over the documents.

Those documents revealed neglectful treatment of animals
that had gone previously undetected by federal inspectors and that PETA
identified and communicated to the USDA in March 2012, prompting the agency to
cite UTMB for violations of federal law. The following are a couple of examples:

  • A sheep identified only as “572M” was
    subjected to third-degree burns over 20 percent of her body and was forced to inhale smoke in experiments
    conducted by Daniel Traber. The following day, the burn lesions were cut off,
    and skin was grafted over the wounds. There was no indication of post-operative
    pain relief in any of 572M’s records—a failure that was confirmed in the USDA’s
    inspection report. Eighteen days after she was burned, 572M was killed.
  • A 4-year-old marmoset monkey identified as “#28046”
    was subjected to viral and bacterial infections of his central nervous system
    in experiments conducted by Mark Estes. Monkeys used in the experiments endured
    bloody nasal discharge, anorexia, lethargy, ruffled coats, and ocular discharge
    before being killed. #28046 was described as being “very thin” and “dehydrated”
    and as “nonresponsive in rest box … hunched … hypothermic …
    thin/emaciated.” Ten days after #28046’s condition was noted, the monkey
    was found dead in his cage.

How You Can Help
Animals in UTMB Laboratories

These heartbreaking stories show that animal experimenters—even
those at supposedly top-tier institutions like UTMB—can’t be trusted to abide
by even the minimal standards of the Animal Welfare Act. As long as animals
continue to suffer in laboratories, PETA will continue to be vigilant in monitoring
what experimenters are doing. Animals in laboratories need each of us to stop the cruelty in laboratories at UTMB—and everywhere

urge Shriners International—which has funded UTMB’s burn experiments on animals
for more than 30 years—to stop supporting this cruelty.

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Article source: PETA Files

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