Monkeys in the laboratory of Elisabeth Murray: agony, misery and death

Monkeys in the laboratory of Elisabeth Murray: agony, misery and death

NIH experimenter Elisabeth Murray used a monkey named Chaplin and five others to death so she could publish a paper investigating these not-so-burning questions: Would monkeys attribute feelings to animated shapes on a video screen? Would they interpret the shapes colliding with each other as “fighting” or, perhaps, “teasing”? She ended the lives of numerous monkeys for this mockery of scientific research.

Murray’s experiments are ridiculous almost beyond imagination and easily manipulated, what we have done. But there are very real consequences for living, breathing, sentient beings as she plays American taxpayers for fools in a long-running NIH-funded scam, scamming them out of more than $50 million to continue the suffering of these monkeys who lived , were tormented daily and died, all because of the arrogance of a woman.

We know of Chaplin and the others only from federal records, but it’s enough to show that they were considered nothing more than experimental tools with expiration dates and no value beyond Murray’s aspirations.

Chaplin (April 5, 2011 to December 18, 2020)

Chaplin, born more than a century after Charlie Chaplin, his silent film star namesake, arrived at Murray’s lab when he was just 3 years old and already suffering from hair loss on his legs. He spent more than 16 years in Murray’s lab, all of them in solitary confinement.

A couple of months after Chaplin arrived at Murray’s lab, a titanium post, called a headpost, was surgically implanted in his skull. But Murray and his staff couldn’t get this mutilation right: they left it implanted incorrectly for eight months before removing it. A month later, he was replaced. This second was removed and a third was implanted six months later. Chaplin suffered from bacterial infections around the headpost a couple of times and bruises around the incision on his head, as well as on his face and the back of his neck.

Experimenters killed Chaplin in December 2020, with a pole still attached to his skull.

Chaplin suffered hair loss on approximately 73% of his body, a sign of extreme stress. At various times during his last 20 months of life, he lost between 81% and 100% of his body hair.

They found him slumped and lethargic in his cage, watery feces covering the walls and floor of the cage. Efforts to revive him were unsuccessful and he was euthanized the next day.

Other monkeys used in Murray’s absurd animated form experiment (Lloyd, Hightop, Skyline, Spitler, and Chaney) suffered similar reprehensible treatment. Here are some examples:


During his first surgery to implant a head post, Lloyd vomited green bile. The staff cleaned his mouth and continued with the surgery. Understandably, he never got used to a metal post sticking out of his head and scratching him. He would be operated on four more times to close wounds or repair stitches.

Lloyd once bit his lower lip and scratched his nose while in a restraint chair. The next day, staff noticed that he was missing a tooth and that the area was bloody. He was given ibuprofen. Later that afternoon, he found his canine tooth in the room.

Highest peak

Staff deemed Hightop’s date of birth unimportant, according to the documentation, which lists it only as “N/A.” He lived in solitary confinement from 2011 until his death eight years later on December 4, 2019. Records indicate that he was sedated seven times for various procedures, including head surgery and tooth extraction. He had a vasectomy in November 2004 and, oddly enough, a “vasectomy re-operation” 14 months later. He suffered hair loss on 73% of his body.

Water retention

The experimenters also subjected Chaplin and all the other monkeys to severe water deprivation for several years. In Murray’s animation experiments, staff deprived monkeys of water and doled out mere drops of juice if, and only if, the monkeys looked at certain points on a video screen. This led to numerous medical problems for all the monkeys, including the following:

  • Dehydration
  • Weight loss, sometimes extreme
  • Numerous incidents where monkeys refused to eat the dry, drywall-like crackers they were given to eat, sometimes for days on end.
  • Numerous incidents where monkeys vomited in cages.
  • Numerous notations of dry and/or infrequent stools

It’s not science, it’s violence

Murray is the NIH’s reigning queen of monkey torture. She has made a career of misleading American taxpayers into believing that what she subjects to sentient monkeys is somehow important or effective. What she does is not science, it is violence. And she must stop.

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