Animal welfare is an indispensable element in research using laboratory animals. Special considerations are particularly required for the treatment of non-human primates. In order to deal with this problem, the Institute established its own guidelines in April, 1986, and revised them in 1988. The "Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Primates" dictates the judicious and human care and use of non-human primates at the Institute.
For smooth implementation of the guidelines, a monitoring committee, the "Animal Care Committee", has been set up with the approval of the Institute. The Animal Care Committee is responsible for all the activities using monkeys and apes at the Institute, including the Cooperation Research Program.
The major activities of the Committee are as follows:
1) To control the number of non-human primates at the Institute, including the lawful introduction of live non-human primates and the breeding schedules of the Institute's breeding colonies.
2) To evaluate all the proposals for research using live non-human primates according to the guidelines in order to eliminate or minimize the discomfort or pain to the non-human primates during experimental periods. Allotment of non-human primates for each research program is also discussed at the meetings. Only after the proposal is approved can the researcher begin his/her project.
3) To effectively control the cooperative and systematic use of the same individuals in order to minimize the number of monkeys used in the experiments.
4) To monitor and provide advice on the management and experimental conditions of all the non-human primates of the Institute in the light of animal welfare.
The Institute has also issued "Guidelines for the Study of Wild Primates and Use of Wild-born Primates" in March of 1989.