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MRC Centre for Macaques

The MRC Centre for Macaques is a primate breeding unit established in 2003 to house and breed rhesus macaques, funded by the MRC with support from the Wellcome Trust.

Macaques are primates which have similarities to humans in terms of their central nervous system (including the visual system), and their immunology and reproductive systems. This means that they continue to be used in some areas of research where there are no alternative approaches. They are used in basic and applied research within the academic sector in the UK, funded by the major grant-giving bodies.

The unit houses about 250 animals, which includes breeding stock and youngsters. The breeding programme is carefully planned so that supply and demand are matched. This is to prevent in-breeding and to ensure there is no need to import animals.

For information about the macaque’s welfare, habituation and research projects, visit their website https://www.har.mrc.ac.uk/about-harwell/mrc-centre-macaques