By Associated Press - Friday, March 20, 2015

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) - The U.S. Department of Agriculture has reported five violations of federal animal welfare laws at Georgia Regents University research labs.

The Augusta Chronicle reported that USDA inspectors in late February found that a majority of macaques were not being housed in pairs, as is typically required for primates, and that a researcher wasn’t properly documenting food restriction in one experiment ( ). The report also said researchers used a bag of sodium chloride on a pig during a surgical procedure that had expired three years ago.

USDA officials said that the university violated the same rules on primate housing protocols and using expired chemicals during a December 2013 inspection. Georgia Regents University officials said the inspections found no instances of illegal activity or negligence.

“GRU will continue to pursue the highest standards of animal care in medical and scientific research that is lessening the burden of disease on society and improving patient lives,” officials said in a statement.

The inspection report also said the facilities have until this month to correct record-keeping problems and until April to make other repairs.

The newspaper says USDA representatives typically return for re-inspections. A watchdog group is urging the agency to issue its harshest fines against the facilities.


Information from: The Augusta Chronicle ,

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