Animal research is changing, in part because of newer computer modeling techniques and cell tissue / organ culture methodologies that have reduced the need for animals to be used in research and teaching.
However, with our inherently complex biological systems, we continue to need live-animal research in order to solve existing health problems and for biomedical educational experiences.
The IACUC must review and approve all animal research in order to maintain the university's high research standards. It does so by following federal and state regulations, which reflect the general concerns of society, along with professional standards of ethical conduct that govern the use of animal subjects in scientific and educational activities.
- Governmental statutes, including the Public Health Service Animal Welfare Policy, require that all research institutions establish an Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) to oversee the proper care and use of laboratory animals.
- The IACUC relies on Animal Welfare Regulations (CFR, Title 9, Chapter 1, Subchapter A, Parts 1, 2 and 3) and the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals to ensure the university is in compliance with all federal, state and local regulations.
- University policy and the Office for Laboratory Animal Welfare (OLAW) also guide the IACUC.
- The university's animal care program and laboratory animal facilities are fully accredited by the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC) International, a voluntary peer review process.
- AAALAC accreditation is the gold standard in animal care and indicates to external organizations, including funding bodies and governmental authorities, that the university's animal care program conforms to internationally accepted standards.