FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 13, 2010
MERCK SUED: HomeAgain® PET CHIP IMPLICATED IN CANCER New website, ChipMeNot.com, features details on cancer case and other adverse reactions
Nashua, NH — Pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. has been served with a lawsuit over claims its HomeAgainÂ® pet microchip induced cancer in a cat. Animal rights attorney Steven Wise seeks “reasonable compensatory damages” for a malignant tumor “likely” induced by a HomeAgain® ID chip implanted in his client’s cat, Bulkin.
The complaint, “Andrea Rutherford v. Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp. and Digital Angel, Inc.” (case # 1052CV1147) was filed last week in Cambridge (MA) District Court. The complaint named implant maker Digital Angel Corporation as a co-defendant.
“Based on the alarming number of microchip-linked cancers we’re discovering, I predict this lawsuit will be just the tip of the iceberg,” said Dr. Katherine Albrecht, a consumer advocate and expert on adverse reactions associated with implantable microchips.
Bulkin’s case is featured at www.ChipMeNot.com, a new website launched by Albrecht’s consumer group CASPIAN to bring attention to the plight of animals who have developed cancer and other adverse reactions from ID microchips. Albrecht documents several of these cases in”Microchip-Induced Tumors in Laboratory Rodents and Dogs: A Review of the Literature 1990-2006,” a peer-reviewed academic paper she presented at a June conference of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers devoted to concerns about implantable microchips.
Albrecht’s paper and a copy of the complaint are also posted at www.ChipMeNot.com. The site, co-developed with graduate intern Lidiya Prorochuk, spotlights a growing number of adverse reactions to microchips, including the chip-related cancer deaths of two dogs within the past year. The site also features a form where pet owners can report adverse microchip reactions, since there is currently no official registry in the US to collect such data.
“Merck and organizations that advocate pet chipping should take this lawsuit seriously and start warning pet owners of the risk of microchip-induced cancer,” Albrecht advised. “As Andrea Rutherford and other pet owners can tell you, it’s not a statistic when it’s your pet.”