Why primate models matter

Authors

  • Kimberley A. Phillips,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Psychology, Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas
    2. Southwest National Primate Research Center, Texas Biomedical Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas
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  • Karen L. Bales,

    1. Department of Psychology, University of California, Davis, California
    2. California National Primate Research Center, Davis, California
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  • John P. Capitanio,

    1. Department of Psychology, University of California, Davis, California
    2. California National Primate Research Center, Davis, California
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  • Alan Conley,

    1. Department of Population Health & Reproduction, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, California
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  • Paul W. Czoty,

    1. Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
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  • Bert A. ‘t Hart,

    1. Department of Immunobiology, Biomedical Primate Research Center, Rijswick, The Netherlands
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  • William D. Hopkins,

    1. Neuroscience Institute and Language Research Center, Georgia State University, Atlanta, Georgia
    2. Division of Cognitive and Developmental Neuroscience, Yerkes National Primate Research Center, Atlanta, Georgia
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  • Shiu-Lok Hu,

    1. Department of Pharmaceutics and Washington National Primate Research Center, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
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  • Lisa A. Miller,

    1. California National Primate Research Center, Davis, California
    2. Department of Anatomy, Physiology and Cell Biology, University of California, Davis, California
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  • Michael A. Nader,

    1. Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
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  • Peter W. Nathanielsz,

    1. Center for Pregnancy and Newborn Research, University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, Texas
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  • Jeffrey Rogers,

    1. Human Genome Sequencing Center, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas
    2. Wisconsin National Primate Research Center, Madison, Wisconsin
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  • Carol A. Shively,

    1. Department of Pathology, Section on Comparative Medicine, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
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  • Mary Lou Voytko

    1. Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
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Abstract

Research involving nonhuman primates (NHPs) has played a vital role in many of the medical and scientific advances of the past century. NHPs are used because of their similarity to humans in physiology, neuroanatomy, reproduction, development, cognition, and social complexity—yet it is these very similarities that make the use of NHPs in biomedical research a considered decision. As primate researchers, we feel an obligation and responsibility to present the facts concerning why primates are used in various areas of biomedical research. Recent decisions in the United States, including the phasing out of chimpanzees in research by the National Institutes of Health and the pending closure of the New England Primate Research Center, illustrate to us the critical importance of conveying why continued research with primates is needed. Here, we review key areas in biomedicine where primate models have been, and continue to be, essential for advancing fundamental knowledge in biomedical and biological research. Am. J. Primatol. 76:801–827, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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