By Natalie Musumeci August 31, 2020 4:41pm
This is bananas.
US researchers working frantically to test potential COVID-19 vaccines are facing a critical shortage of one essential resource — monkeys.
“Nationally, there is basically a big shortage,” Koen Van Rompay, an infectious-disease scientist at the California National Primate Research Center, told The Atlantic.
Primate research in the country was already pricey and controversial — but the coronavirus pandemic has been particularly bad for the monkey business.
“We can’t find any rhesus [monkeys] any longer. They’ve completely disappeared,” Mark Lewis, the CEO of contract research firm Bioqual, told the magazine.
Rhesus monkeys are most widely used in research, according to The National Primate Research Centers.