National Geographic : 1992 Mar
he best of care is lavished on captive bred two-year-old chimps by JennahDolley at Vilab II, a medical research laboratoryin Liberia. They are being raisedto test vaccines for river blindness and blood borneviruses such as hepatitis.While chimps can carry such viruses, includingHIV, the patho genic cause of AIDS, they have not developed any symptoms. "I would prefer not to work with chimps," says Dr. Alfred M. Prince,of the New York Blood Cen ter, which in 1975 set up the Liberianfacility. "But they are essentialfor this vaccine research.There is no way thatthe original hepatitisB vaccines could have been developed with out chimpanzees. I want to treat them humanely and provide them a future." Vilab II animals are kept in socialgroups dur ing experiments and, later,on a "retirement" island.