PETA Brings Horror Stories From NIH Monkey Fright Lab to the Streets of Bethesda and D.C.


For Immediate Release:
November 8, 2023

Kendall Davis 202-483-7382

Bethesda, Md. – PETA is unveiling new ads in the Washington, D.C., area on behalf of monkeys caged for years in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) laboratory of experimenter Elisabeth Murray. These include video footage of real monkeys named Beamish and Guinness on a mobile billboard circling the NIH campus and large images of Guinness on Capital Bikeshare stands nearby in Washington.

When:    Thursday, November 9, 8:30–9:30 a.m.

Where:    Near the escalator at the Medical Center Metro station, Bethesda

To kick it off, a larger-than-life Beamish mascot and PETA members will greet commuters tomorrow at the Medical Center Metro station, which is used by many NIH staffers, and alert them to Murray’s cruel, taxpayer-funded monkey fright experiments.

“These cruel fright experiments are relics of decades-old laboratory abuse of monkeys that should have ended with the Cold War,” said PETA Vice President Dr. Alka Chandna. “NIH must shut down Elisabeth Murray’s fright experiments now and modernize its science.”

This screen capture shows part of a video obtained by PETA through a Freedom of Information Act request.

In Murray’s laboratory, experimenters cut open monkeys’ skulls, inject their brains with toxins, and implant titanium rods in their skulls. The monkeys are then isolated in tiny cages and repeatedly presented with realistic-looking spiders and snakes in experiments intentionally designed to terrify them. Murray has received $50 million in taxpayer funding since 1998 for her curiosity-driven experiments.

Beamish’s and Guinness’ stories will be told on a mobile billboard circling the NIH campus from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on November 9. In addition, PETA’s messages calling on NIH to end the wasteful experiments will appear on Capital Bikeshare stands at the following locations: Broad Branch Road and Northampton Street N.W., Fessenden Street and Wisconsin Avenue N.W., McKinley Street and Connecticut Avenue N.W., Wisconsin Avenue and Ingomar Street N.W., and the National Portrait Gallery at Seventh and F streets N.W.


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