In December 2010, the NIH commissioned a study by the IOM to assess whether chimpanzees are or will be necessary for biomedical and behavioral research. The IOM issued its findings, with a primary recommendation that the use of chimpanzees in research be guided by a set of principles and criteria. On December 15, 2011, the NIH announced its acceptance of the IOM recommendations with respect to the use of NIH-owned or -supported chimpanzees in research.
After accepting the IOM recommendations, the NIH charged the NIH Council of Councils with assembling a working group to propose advice on implementing the IOM recommendations and to consider the size and placement of the active and inactive populations of NIH-owned and -supported chimpanzees. On January 22, 2013, the Council of Councils accepted recommendations presented by its Working Group on the Use of Chimpanzees in NIH-Supported Research and provided these recommendations to the NIH. After seeking and considering public comments, the agency accepted a majority of the Council’s recommendations on June 26, 2013 (see 78 Fed. Reg. 39741 (July 2, 2013) for a summary of the comments and the agency’s decisions and rationale).
As explained in 78 Fed. Reg. 39741 (“the FRN”), among other things, the agency accepted the Council recommendation to establish a panel, which is independent of the existing NIH review processes (e.g., peer review of grants and technical evaluation of contracts and scientific review of NIH intramural research), to consider whether requests to the NIH to use chimpanzees in research are consistent with the IOM principles and criteria. A working group of the NIH Council of Councils, the Chimpanzee Research Use Panel (CRUP or “Panel”) was created and charged with considering requests to use chimpanzees in research.