UWSP Animal Care Policy - University of Wisconsin

Policy on the Care and Use of Animals in Research and Teaching
updated November 29, 2011
The University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (UWSP) follows the University of Wisconsin System Board of
Regents Policy (1984) <www.uwsa.edu/bor/policies/index.htm>
History: Res. 3024 adopted 4/6/84.
The criteria as stated within the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, DHEW (NIH) 78-23
revised 1987 or succeeding additions, shall be the criteria for researchers to follow regarding the humane
treatment of animals for scientific research purposes in accordance with section 36.40, Wis. Stats., (created
by 1983 Wisconsin Act 27, sec. 908t).
The university is committed to the highest ethical standards of animal care and use. This policy has been
prepared as a resource for anyone at the university who works with animals in research, teaching, or testing.
It outlines policies and procedures that must be followed in the humane conduct of animal-based studies, and
provides resources to obtain additional information.
This policy applies to all faculty, postdoctoral fellows, graduate and undergraduate students, research
personnel, and staff members involved in the care and use of animals; heads of units where animals are used
in research, teaching, or testing; and Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee members, including the
Institutional Officer.
Animals covered by this policy include all live mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fishes, either wild or
domestic. Bird, amphibian, and reptile eggs are not regulated by this policy, although post-hatching animals
are regulated. This policy does not supercede federal, state, or local regulations. In all cases, animal care
and use must comply with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations.
This policy regulates the use of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish in research and teaching by
UWSP faculty, staff, postdoctoral fellows, graduate and undergraduate students engaged in any Universityrelated activities. This policy applies to all mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians captive-housed on
University property and those housed on private property used in University-related research or teaching
activities. This policy does not apply to the use of wild animals for purely observational purposes when such
observation is not expected to significantly affect animal behavior or well-being. This policy does not apply to
animals kept solely as pets by members of the University community.
This policy can be found at the website: http://www4.uwsp.edu/special/acuc/
"Procedures involving animals should be designed and performed with due consideration of their
relevance to human or animal health, the advancement of knowledge, or the good of society."
-- U.S. Government Principles for the Utilization and Care of Vertebrate Animals
Used in Testing, Research and Training (1984)
The members of the IACUC are responsible for overseeing UWSP compliance with federal, state, and local
animal care and use policies. The Committee includes a minimum of five members, including a professional
scientist, a veterinarian, and a member of the Stevens Point community not associated with UWSP or
conducting animal research. IACUC members are volunteers and are not paid for their service. IACUC
membership is approved by the Institutional Officer (IO). An IACUC member may be removed from the
committee if he/she is regularly unable to attend protocol review meetings or is unable to fulfill his/her
It is the responsibility of the IACUC to:
Review UWSP’s program for animal care and use at least once every six months, using the AWAR, the
Guide, and the Ag Guide as a basis for evaluation
Inspect, at least once every 6 months, all UWSP animal facilities, including primary and secondary
housing locations, satellite facilities, and field sites for captive animals (free-living, wild animals in their
natural habitat) using the Animal Welfare Act Regulations (AWAR), the Guide for the Care and Use of
Laboratory Animals (The Guide), the Guide for the Care and Use of Agricultural Animals in Agriculture
Research and Teaching (Ag Guide), and the Public Health Service Policy on Humane Care and Use of
Laboratory Animals (PHS Policy) as a basis for evaluation.
Submit to the Institutional Officer (IO) reports of the above evaluations that distinguish significant
deficiencies from minor deficiencies; contain a reasonable and specific plan and schedule for
correcting each deficiency; describe and justify any departures from the Guide, Ag Guide, and PHS
Policy, which are signed by a majority of the IACUC members; and include any minority views
Review and investigate concerns involving the care and use of animals at the university resulting from
public complaints or fro reports of noncompliance received from university personnel
Make recommendations to the IO regarding any aspect for the institution’s animal program, facilities,
or personnel training
Review and approve, require modifications to secure approval, or withhold approval of those
components of proposed activities related to the care and use of animals
Review and approve; require modifications to secure approval; or withhold approval of proposed,
significant changes regarding the care and use of animals in ongoing activities
The IACUC serves the scientific, teaching, and animal communities and welcomes opportunities to help
develop research and teaching plans, implement protocols, and train users. Any member of the IACUC may
be contacted for assistance.
Vic Akemann
Dr. Shelli Dubay
Dr. Karin Bodensteiner
Emily Starke
Dr. Todd Huspeni
Dr. Tom Kelble, DVM
Sandra LaVake
Dr. Heather Molenda-Figueira
Dr. Brian Sloss
Dr. Chris Diehm
work phone
Biology education
Wildlife health
Animal reproduction
UWSP animal care facility
Veterinary medicine
Nutrition, pharmaceuticals
Rodent hormones and reproduction
Environmental ethics
The attending veterinarian is a member of the IACUC and has the unique responsibility and authority to assure
that handling, restraint, anesthesia, analgesia, and euthanasia are administered as required to relieve pain
and suffering in research and teaching animals, provided such intervention is not specifically precluded in
protocols reviewed and approved by the IACUC. The attending veterinarian has the authority and
responsibility for making determinations concerning animal well-being and assuring that animal well-being is
adequately monitored and promoted. The attending veterinarian participates in the review of animal care and
use protocols. He/she has the authority to remove an animal from an experiment, test, or teaching activity
that is adversely affecting its well-being beyond a level reviewed and approved by the IACUC. The
veterinarian can advise principal investigators on the design and performance of experiments using animals as
related to model selection, collection, and analysis of samples and data from animals, and methods and
techniques proposed or in use.
Faculty and academic staff members may serve as principal investigators. Post-doctoral researchers and
graduate students may serve as co-investigators with a faculty or academic staff member. Undergraduate
students may not serve as principal investigators but can participate extensively in the preparation and
implementation of an animal use proposal. Undergraduate students must be supervised by a faculty or staff
member serving as the principal investigator. For the care and use of animals in the classroom, the faculty or
staff instructor, or the laboratory personnel, may serve as the principal investigator. Faculty and staff
teaching in multi-section courses together may file a single animal use protocol for a procedure or use in
common. All involved in the project must be trained via: http://www4.uwsp.edu/special/acuc/.
The principal investigator has the responsibility to submit animal use protocols to the IACUC in a timely
manner that allows for thorough review and possible revision prior to initiation of the study. The principal
investigator is responsible for understanding and complying with all relevant federal, state and local
regulations, and for securing all required federal, state, and local licenses or permits (e.g. a Drug Enforcement
Agency registration number for the use of scheduled drugs).
The principal investigator is responsible for ensuring compliance with an approved IACUC animal use protocol
for himself/herself and researchers, staff, and students under his/her supervision. The principal investigator
shares with the IACUC the responsibility for providing adequate training for students and staff to ensure their
own safety, the well-being of the animals, and compliance with the approved protocol. The IACUC can
provide hands-on, online, and text-based instruction on the care and handling of many wild and domestic
animals. Contact the IACUC chair for help.
The principal investigator is responsible for maintaining written records documenting this compliance and for
reporting departures from approved protocols. Each year, he/she should report to the IACUC on the status of
each protocol and provide assurance that ongoing activities are conducted in accordance with the approved
protocol. The principal investigator must request approval from the IACUC for changes to approved studies
through a protocol amendment.
An animal use protocol approved by the IACUC is required for use of mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians
in research and teaching by UWSP faculty, staff, postdoctoral fellows, graduate or undergraduate students.
IACUC approval of a protocol is required before animal use begins. Animals cannot be obtained nor studies
initiated prior to IACUC approval of appropriate protocols.
The principal investigator should prepare an animal use protocol using the current form obtained from the
website http://www4.uwsp.edu/special/acuc/ or from the IACUC chair. An exact paper copy signed by the
principal investigator and appropriate department or division head should be given to the Grant Support Office
at least three days prior to a scheduled review meeting.
As part of the protocol, the principal investigator must provide details about the source, number, species, and
condition of animals used. For captive animals, the protocol must demonstrate compliance with the guidelines
outlined in The Guide and PHS Policy, including provisions for adequate husbandry, veterinary care, and
environmental enrichment. Deviations from recommendations in The Guide or PHS policy should be explained
and justified.
Standard operating procedures (SOP) for laboratory mice, laboratory rats, fishes, and leopard frogs
(Lithobates pipiens) are included in this policy and may be cited in lieu of detailed descriptions. Deviations
from the SOP should be noted in the protocol.
In addition to a detailed methodology, the principal investigator must also provide a justification for the use of
animals. He/she must provide evidence that alternatives to animal use have been considered, including
potential use of non-animal or in vitro systems, refinement of research techniques designed to decrease or
eliminate pain and distress, and reduction in the number of animals required to obtain scientifically valid data
or to reach desired teaching goals through improved experimental design.
The IACUC will meet at least twice per year for review of protocols, usually in mid-April and mid-October. The
exact dates, times, and location of meetings will be communicated via email from the IACUC Chair to
department heads four weeks prior to meetings. IACUC members will be provided with paper or electronic
copies of protocols to review at least two weeks in advance of a review meeting. Protocols for animal use in
the fall semester should be submitted in time for the spring review meeting; protocols for spring semester and
early summer studies should be submitted in the fall.
DEADLINES for protocol submission
March 31
for IACUC review in mid-April
October 31
for IACUC review in November
At least five IACUC members must be present (in person) to conduct protocol reviews. Written or verbal
comments from members unable to attend in person will be considered, but as committee discussion is central
to the functioning of the IACUC, determinations made by the full committee may supercede those of
individuals not in attendance. Non-voting guests, colleagues, and principal investigators or their
representatives may be invited to attend in order to provide additional information or expertise. Principal
investigators submitting protocols are welcome to participate in the portion of the meeting relevant to their
The IACUC will endeavor to complete protocols reviews in a timely manner. Principal investigators will be
notified of the IACUC decision within two weeks of the review meeting and will receive a written summary of
comments and suggestions from the committee. A majority of IACUC committee members must approve,
require modifications, or withhold protocols by formal vote. A submitted protocol may be tabled or postponed
by the Chair if the committee requires additional information or expertise to conduct a review, or by the
Principal Investigator prior to review.
Scientific Merit Review
In addition to considering the technical aspects of proposed animal use, the IACUC is charged with
determining whether a project demonstrates scientific merit in accordance with the U.S. Government
Principles for the Utilization and Care of Vertebrate Animals Used in Testing, Research, and Training, Principle
II, which states, “Procedures involving animals should be designed and performed with due consideration of
their relevance to human or animal health, the advancement of knowledge, or the good of society.” In cases
where projects involving the use of animals have been selected to receive funding from a sponsoring agency
that utilizes an external, scientific peer review process, the IACUC will generally consider that the scientific
merit criteria have been met.
When reviewing a protocol, the IACUC has the following options:
a. Provide approval or provide approval with minor changes
b. Require modification(s) to secure approval
c. Withhold approval
d. Table or postpone approval
a. If the IACUC votes to provide approval, the approved protocol will be valid for a one-year period (12
months) beginning from the date of the protocol review. Comments and suggestions from the IACUC may
be offered on a “good-faith” assumption that the principal investigator will incorporate suggested
improvements as possible. Any minor changes, edits, or corrections requested by the IACUC should be
made in a timely manner and an updated copy should be provided to the IACUC Chair. However, work
under an approved protocol may begin immediately following the review and will not be delayed. Protocol
approval may be renewed for two additional one-year periods with the submission of a brief request for
renewal; thus an approved protocol has an “operating life” of three years.
b. If the IACUC recommends substantial changes or additions to the protocol or requires additional
information critical to the evaluation of the protocol, the committee may outline modifications required to
secure approval. In these cases, work under the protocol may not begin until the required modifications
are approved. If the committee is able to outline specific modifications required, the IACUC may vote that
a full committee review of changes is not necessary. The Chair may review any resubmitted protocol to
determine if IACUC-requested modifications have been made and extend approval if modifications are
satisfactory. If the IACUC is unable to outline specific modifications, or its members need to consider
additional information provided by the principal investigator or outside experts, a full committee review of
a resubmitted protocol will be conducted. A resubmission will be given priority of review at the next
review meeting, and if possible, a special meeting may be scheduled to consider a rapidly resubmitted
c. If the IACUC finds that no modifications of a protocol would bring it into compliance with federal, state, or
local regulations, or finds that the proposed use of animals is not scientifically justified, it will withhold
approval. The principal investigator will be given opportunities to understand the components of the
IACUC decision and may respond in person or in writing. The principal investigator may submit a new
protocol for review at a subsequent meeting. The IACUC will consider the new protocol without prejudice.
d. The principal investigator may withdraw a submitted protocol by written request prior to review by the
IACUC. The IACUC may table a protocol, or postpone its review, if additional information or action is
required in order to evaluate the protocol.
PROTOCOL RENEWAL - years 2 & 3 of an ongoing study
For IACUC-approved studies continuing for more than one year, the principal investigator must submit a brief
narrative describing the outcome of the approved protocol and request renewal of approval for a second year.
This request for renewal may be repeated for a third year of study. Renewal requests may be submitted
electronically or in paper copy to the Chair by the appropriate deadline (March 31 or Sept 30). Renewal
requests do not require the signature of the department or division chair.
PROTOCOL RESUBMISSION - for work beyond the 3rd year
Every three years or 36 months (that is, prior to the fourth year of study), the principal investigator in an
IACUC-approved and renewed study must submit a full protocol using the most current form for de novo
review. Although not specified in the regulations set forth in the Animal Welfare Act, a de novo review every
three years for ongoing work is required by the National Institutes of Health, and adherence to NIH policy is a
condition of many federal grant programs.
Protocols submitted for fourth year of an ongoing study should follow the format for new protocols as above.
The IACUC will review these triennial submissions as new and adhering to the most current regulations.
Previous approval of a protocol does not guarantee its approval in subsequent de novo triennial reviews;
however, the IACUC will recognize the importance of continuation in ongoing and funded studies. Approval of
a protocol submitted for de novo review is for a one-year period (12 months) and renewals proceed as above.
If substantial changes to an approved protocol are made, the principal investigator must submit an amended
protocol for review. The original protocol may be modified to highlight the proposed changes to expedite the
process. The IACUC members may authorize the Chair to approve amendments without requiring a full
review. Work under the amended protocol may not begin until changes have been approved: the principal
investigator must follow the original protocol until approval for amendments has been offered. Amendment
approval does not extend the tenure of an approved protocol. An amended protocol remains on its original
renewal and resubmission schedule.
Examples requiring a protocol amendment:
 principal investigator is changed or a co-investigator is added
 project title is changed
 species used is changed to a biologically and legislatively similar species
 degree of invasiveness of a procedure or discomfort to an animal is changed
 number of animals used is increased
 housing or procedure location is changed
 husbandry techniques are changed
 anesthetic or analgesic agent(s), dosage, or delivery method is modified
 method of euthanasia is changed
Some changes require the submission of a new protocol. Examples include:
 objectives of or justification for the study changes
 species of animal used changes to an unrelated species (in different genus)
 species of animal used changes to one under increased regulation (threatened or endangered)
 an invasive or painful procedure is added
 surgical procedures are changed from non-survival to survival, or vice-versa
IACUC decisions to withhold approval may not be overturned by higher authorities or by any UWSP
administrative officials. Principal Investigators may appeal an IACUC decision in writing by providing his/her
rationale for appeal. The IACUC may invite an outside expert to serve as a “hearing officer” in mediating an
Complaints or concerns about the use of animals should be communicated to a member of the IACUC in any
number of ways: a written note or letter, telephone call, email, anonymous tip, or conversation via a colleague
or teaching staff. The person receiving a non-written complaint should document it in an email to the IACUC
chair as quickly as possible. The IACUC chair will review, and if warranted, investigate concerns involving the
care and use of animals at UWSP resulting from complaints received or from reports of non-compliance. If an
investigation is warranted, the IACUC chair will gather the available evidence and appropriate documents and
contact the necessary staff to evaluate fully the allegation. He/she may use other IACUC members or other
necessary professionals as needed to help in the investigation. The IACUC chair will discuss his/her findings
with the Committee to determine if the situation merits a decision from a convened IACUC meeting. The
Committee may recommend that no corrective action is necessary, may direct the responsible animal user to
take corrective actions, or may suspend animal use. All actions will be documented in a written report.
To avoid potential conflicts of interest, a member of the IACUC will abstain from voting on his/her protocol.
An alternate member will assume duties of the IACUC chair for review of protocols submitted by the chair. If
requested by any IACUC member, the committee member submitting a protocol may be excluded from that
portion of the meeting involving discussion of or vote on his/her protocol.
The IACUC has the obligation to suspend an activity involving animals if it does not comply with the AWAR,
The Guide, PHS Policy, or the UWSP Animal Care and Use Policy.