Bastrop Animal Research Center to Expand

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Officials say a major expansion at a Bastrop animal research facility will give participating animals a calm and healthy home.

The 31 (M) million dollar project will add laboratories, offices and a naturalized animal habitat to the center operated by the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Director Christian Abee says healthy animals are important to quality research.

The animal research center north of Bastrop opened in 1975. The more than 100 faculty and staff members assist cancer scientists at MD Anderson and other biomedical researchers in their studies of human health.

Abee joined the center last year after working for 26 years at the University of South Alabama, where he built a collection of 800 South American monkeys for research.

With the expansion of the center, Abee's squirrel and owl monkeys will make the move from Alabama and join three-thousand other animals from 12 species already there.