Abstract # 52:

Scheduled for Saturday, September 17, 2011 04:35 PM-04:55 PM: Session 10 (Salon F (Sixth Floor)) Oral Presentation


J. Ely and M. L. Lammey
APF , Bldg. 1303, Holloman AFB, NM 88330, USA

The role of chimpanzees in research has been called into question. The GAP Act would abolish all research on all apes in the US. The NRC will convene a 2nd “Chimpanzees in Research” panel to study ongoing needs. Some chimpanzees may remain necessary for HCV vaccine development. Many NIH-owned chimpanzees could be organized into an aging program involving longitudinal monitoring of naturally occurring disease processes, with no non-medically indicated interventions. Central coordination ensures consistent diagnoses of disease phenotypes and allows epidemiological meta-assessment. This program should have 3 foci all involving Genomics. First, despite 80 years of captive studies, our understanding of Chimpanzee medicine remains rudimentary. Only this year was it shown that elevated blood pressure increases Chimpanzee mortality, the first demonstration in any nonhuman primate. Second, the greatest burden of Chimpanzee morbidity and mortality results from cardiovascular disease. But it is unrelated to human risks like elevated serum cholesterol. Third, chimpanzees were used in HIV studies until it was discovered they do not progress to AIDS. But unlike studies on humans and African monkeys, no program has focused on determining the genomic basis for Chimpanzee non-progression. Chimpanzee Genomics studies can reveal the underlying basis of chronic and infectious disease processes, improve Chimpanzee health, and explain why Chimpanzee disease processes differ from human. A longitudinal Chimpanzee aging program is imperative to advancing comparative and Translational medicine.