AN animal welfare group has called on the Government to axe funding for Oxford University’s use of primates for research.

The Anti Vivisection Coalition spoke out to mark 10 years since Cambridge University abandoned plans for a primate research laboratory.

Coalition head Luke Steele said: “The University of Oxford inflicts severe suffering on primates in experiments, sawing open their skulls and implanting electrodes into their brains.

“This cruelty is subsidised by the very public who oppose it. We call for change to reflect the exodus away from monkey-testing taking place in other countries.”

But the university said 98 per cent of its research is on rodents with the rest done on fish, frogs, ferrets and primates.

A spokesman said 29 primates were held for research in 2012, adding: “Primates are only used where no other species can deliver the research answer.”