Animal rights activists gathered in Muskegon Thursday in protest, outside of Northern Biomedical Research, Inc., 930 W. Sherman Blvd. The group is upset about the use of animals for medical testing.
Northern Biomedical Research (NBR), said in a news release that it “has been quietly studying fatal and disabling diseases of the nervous system for over 20 years. Our objective is to assist in the development of cures or therapies for diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Lou Gehrig’s, Huntington’s, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, meningitis and brain tumors that will provide significantly quality of life hopes for those who may suffer from these diseases.”
While NBR did not mention the use of animals, FOX 17 was able to confirm animal testing use through the United States Department of Agriculture. The USDA said during its last inspection on March 9, 2011, the facility contained 21 adult dogs, 182 crab-eating Macaque (non-human primates), 23 Rhesus Macaque (non-human primates) and 9 sheep or Mouflon. A spokesperson said the report showed that the facility was in compliance with the Animal Welfare Act.
Kara Moon has lived in Muskegon for many years, just like the others who lined the sidewalks with signs, but did not learn about the animal testing until roughly two weeks ago. Moon sprung into action forming the group “Speak Up”.
“They do, do good research. “ Moon said. “I’m not trying to take people’s jobs away, or eh, they need to find cures for the diseases that they’re doing tests on but they don’t need to do it on animals.”
Moon and many others at the protest feel that computer simulation is not only cheaper, but less harmful to the animals.
“I just don’t feel like they are comparing apples to apples when they are using animals as opposed to humans when they can simulate that and get better results.”
Another portion of the NBR’s statement said, “ Research and discoveries made by NBR scientists have already conclusively provided medical benefit and hope, to so many who suffer from debilitating illness and disease and has saved the lives of numerous friends and neighbors in the West Michigan area as well as others around the world.”
There is no proof that NBR is doing anything illegal.