Institutes of Health (NIH) stop funding animal research at Russian state-run labs.

“Our tax dollars should never be sent to state-run labs in adversary nations like Russia and China that threaten our national security. My AFAR Act would prohibit tax dollars from being shipped to animal testing labs in any countries that are deemed foreign adversaries. This legislation is even more crucial in light of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Vladimir Putin’s actions are in violation of international law, and must be held accountable for his actions. American taxpayer dollars should not be used to subsidize the Kremlin,” said Rep. McClain.

American taxpayer dollars are flowing to Vladimir Putin’s state-run laboratories through the National Institutes of Health. A recent report from the non-profit White Coat Waste Project has revealed that, as recently as November 2021, the NIH shipped $549,331 (via the Georgia Institute of Technology) to Russia’s state-run Pavlov Institute of Physiology for invasive experiments on cats. Another $221,135 in NIH funding was sent to the same Russian lab in 2018. The NIH currently authorizes four different Russian state animal testing labs to receive taxpayer funding.

The Accountability in Foreign Animal Research Act of 2021 (the AFAR Act) would prevent the Secretary of Health and Human Services, acting through the Director of NIH, from conducting or supporting research on vertebrate animals in foreign countries that the federal government has labeled “foreign adversaries.” These nations are defined in a January 2021 interim final rule from the Department of Commerce, and comprise China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, and the Maduro regime of Venezuela.

“Taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to pay white coats in the Russian government to torture and kill cats in wasteful experiments. We have found that there are four Kremlin-run animal testing labs authorized by NIH to receive our money. U.S. sanctions against Russia should include defunding them, and Congresswoman McClain’s AFAR Act should swiftly be signed into law,” said Justin Goodman, Senior Vice President at White Coat Waste Project.

Rep. McClain calls on President Biden to halt funding to Russian labs, and revoke their eligibility to receive U.S. taxpayer funds, as soon as possible.