DRUGS: No Monkey Shines

Ever since the ancients labeled them kin to Hanuman. demigod king of the monkeys, India's monkeys have been prolific, pampered pests. But starting in 1951, when scientists discovered that rhesus monkey kidneys were ideal for making polio vaccines, hordes of the primates were lured from the Assam jungles to worthy ends in the laboratories of the world. Shipping 150,000 small brown monkeys annually to 30 countries (80% to the U.S.), India earned $3,000,000 a year in foreign exchange; four big exporters and 5,000 trappers prospered, and many airlines cashed in on the boom by flying out planeloads of monkeys.


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