For Immediate Release:
October 11, 2023
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382
Norfolk, Va. – Please see the following statement from PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo regarding reports in the journal Nature about a “breakthrough” in xenotransplantation, touting the survival of a monkey who received a kidney graft from a genetically modified pig. Note that the species of monkey used, the long-tailed macaque, has been designated endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature:
Today’s announcement that one monkey received an organ from a genetically modified pig and survived more than two years is neither scientific nor a breakthrough. A look under the hood of this grotesque sideshow reveals the reality of biotech company eGenesis’ study. We urge journalists to read the fine print.
Multiple monkeys were subjected to the transplants, and many died shortly afterward, at four, six, eight, nine, and 16 days. Ten suffered renal failure and were euthanized. Six more were euthanized after nearing renal failure and also experiencing widespread blood clotting, respiratory distress, coughing up blood, and other problems. One monkey became paraplegic.
All the monkeys, none of whom consented to these horrors, suffered continuously. PETA obtained a necropsy report for one of the monkeys, whose existence was perpetual misery. Organ and tissue damage was catastrophic. His abdomen was full of blood, and his organs were matted together with scar tissue as sperm leaked into his stomach.
PETA challenges the facilities involved with this experiment—Massachusetts General Hospital, the University of Wisconsin–Madison and its Wisconsin National Primate Research Center, and Duke University—to release all video footage and necropsy reports from the experiment and let the taxpayers funding it decide for themselves whether there’s anything to celebrate.
Xenotransplantation is the perversion of science, not the future of it. Aside from its inherent speciesism, it brings the potential for catastrophic public health threats from transmissible diseases that can jump from one species to another.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, or Instagram.