Recommendations for the Disposition of the Health Canada Primate Colony
Published: November 1997
This Report is a response to Health Canada’s request to the Royal Society of Canada that an Expert Panel be assembled by the Society to advise the Department on the future of the cynomolgus macaque monkey colony maintained at its Tunney’s Pasture facilities in Ottawa. The Terms of Reference asked the Expert Panel to assess the public policy need for a Canadian non-human primate breeding colony and, in light of this assessment, to propose a preferred course of action for the disposition of the colony. The Terms of Reference asked the Panel to “present the pros and cons of maintaining the existing monkey breeding colony” and specified that the Panel should consider, in addition to the central question of the welfare of the animals, the following aspects: 1) The value of the Health Canada monkey colony in supporting research in the health effects of disease and disease prevention, especially in the university, private sector and other government organizations; 2) The responsibility of the Government of Canada for the maintenance of the colony in light of public policy interests in research and development, health protection, and health security. This includes consideration of the costs and benefits to future Canadian research and development of maintaining the monkey colony, and the importance of maintaining security of supply within Canada for future Canadian research needs; and, 3) Whether there are ways other than the current arrangement for the maintenance of the colony (e.g., management by universities, the private sector, a consortium of interested parties, or foreign suppliers) to maintain security of supply for Canadian research. The Expert Panel considered all of these issues during the course of its investigations, which included its own collection of data as well as a general public invitation to interested parties to make submissions on these questions to the Panel.
Keywords: Primate Colony; Cynomolgus macaque monkey; Tunney’s Pasture; Ottawa; Non-human primate; Breeding colony; Animal welfare; Research; Disease; Disease prevention; University