Syracuse, N.Y. — PETA fired off an urgent letter to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) this morning, just days after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released the results of an investigation concerning disgraced former State University of New York (SUNY) Upstate neuroscience and physiology department chair Michael W. Miller. Miller fabricated data to obtain funding for and publish cruel experiments in which pregnant mice, rats, and monkeys were forcibly administered alcohol. PETA is urging the NIAAA to seek immediate repayment of the $2.8 million it awarded to Miller for the experiments during the period of misconduct. As PETA points out in the letter, federal guidelines prohibit the use of public funds for experiments that have been the subject of scientific fraud.
“It’s bad enough that Michael Miller forced animals to ingest alcohol and killed their babies—the fact that he lied about the results to obtain millions in taxpayer dollars to fund this cruelty literally adds insult to injury,” says PETA Vice President of Laboratory Investigations Kathy Guillermo. “PETA is urging the government to take this money back and send a message that animal experimenters cannot swindle their way into American taxpayers’ coffers.”
In Miller’s experiments, the offspring of monkeys, rats, and mice who were fed alcohol were killed and had their brains dissected. Miller fabricated data to support his hypothesis in peer-reviewed scientific journals and in his grant applications to the NIAAA. Several journals have already retracted Miller’s papers.