For humans a process of informed consent is used to ensure that the rights of individuals are not compromised, but with chimps this is clearly impossible, since chimps do not have the language skills to understand what is proposed, or to express their views. In 1994 a meeting of scientists debated the use of chimpanzees in AIDS research and it concluded that the necessity was there, due to a lack of alternatives, and that it was acceptable to conduct research such as giving injections and collecting blood samples, so long as financial support for long term retirement of the chimps afterwards is guaranteed. (Akker et al, 1994, p. 51) This amounts to an acceptance of quite invasive research in return for some welfare reward later. In 2010 scientists studying genomes and human lineage specific (HLS) sequences of unknown function considered the use of transgenic techniques with great apes (chimpanzees, orang utans, gorillas) but concluded that this would cause harm to the apes and that “these harms render the conduct of this research ethically unacceptable in apes, justifying regulatory barriers between these species and all other non-human primates for transgenic research.” (Coors et al., 2010), p. 658.
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