Nonhuman primate species have been selectively used in the scientific investigation of adult and newborn neurological diseases. The rhesus monkey has been utilized in models of term asphyxial insults, accurately reflecting the mechanisms and neuropathology demonstrated in the newborn human infant. More recently, a premature baboon model developed for evaluation of bronchopulmonary dysplasia has been applied to the investigation of cerebral development and injury, revealing high similarity in neuropathology to the premature human infant. Given the differences in the outcomes of neuroprotective therapies between lower order species, such as the rat, and human trials in disorders such as stroke, nonhuman primate models may provide an invaluable resource for safety and efficacy testing before trials in human newborns. This article summarizes both models of brain injury. The histologic findings from the models are compared with neuropathological studies in human infants.