Hillary, a 14-year-old long-tailed macaque, who was released from John Hopkins University—has taken center stage at PPI.
Her arrival in May brings with it the good news that the university is no longer required to perform a scan in a non-human primate before going into the clinic with a new radiotracer. Radiotracer is what is injected into a patient's arm or breathed in as a gas prior to PET scans, which use radiation, or nuclear medicine imaging, to produce three-dimensional, color images of the functional processes within the human body.
Prior to her arrival at PPI, Hillary earned a reputation for being a social butterfly—her care takers say she was very friendly toward other female long-tailed macaques and seemed to take great joy in the visual and auditory contact she had with pig-tailed macaques and rhesus macaques.
Long-tailed macaques are also known as crab-eating macaques. In the mangrove swamps of their wild habitat in Southeast Asia, they have the habit of inserting their hand in small burrows or holes to find crabs or other animals.
Unfortunately for them, because many of their body systems — such as their immune and nervous systems — are similar to humans, long-tailed macaques have a history of being exploited by medical research. The long-tailed macaque is best known as the first clinical test animal for the development of the polio vaccine.
Now free from the confines of a research, thanks to your support, Hillary is relishing being able to truly spread her social butterfly wings at PPI, where seven other female and 30 male long-tailed macaques also reside!
You can sponsor Hillary by clicking here and choosing her profile from the "monkeys" category!