compensation for participation and ancillary expenses (e.g., meals, parking, travel), but the amount should be sufficiently modest that it does not become a substantial source of income and thus risk compromising the member’s association with the community and public at large.

For large institutions with many administrative units or departments, no more than three voting members should be associated with a single administrative unit (USDA 1985). The size of the institution and the nature and extent of the Program will determine the number of members of the committee and their terms of appointment. Institutions with broad research programs may need to choose scientists from a number of disciplines and experience to properly evaluate animal use protocols.

The committee is responsible for oversight and evaluation of the entire Program and its components as described in other sections of the Guide. Its oversight functions include review and approval of proposed animal use (protocol review) and of proposed significant changes to animal use; regular inspection of facilities and animal use areas; regular review of the Program; ongoing assessment of animal care and use; and establishment of a mechanism for receipt and review of concerns involving the care and use of animals at the institution. The committee must meet as often as necessary to fulfill its responsibilities, and records of committee meetings and results of deliberations should be maintained. Program review and facilities inspections should occur at least annually or more often as required (e.g., by the Animal Welfare Act and PHS Policy). After review and inspection, a written report (including any minority views) should be provided to the IO about the status of the Program.

Protocol Review

The animal use protocol is a detailed description of the proposed use of laboratory animals. The following topics should be considered in the preparation of the protocol by the researcher and its review by the IACUC:

  • rationale and purpose of the proposed use of animals

  • a clear and concise sequential description of the procedures involving the use of animals that is easily understood by all members of the committee

  • availability or appropriateness of the use of less invasive procedures, other species, isolated organ preparation, cell or tissue culture, or computer simulation (see Appendix A, Alternatives)

  • justification of the species and number of animals proposed; whenever possible, the number of animals and experimental group sizes should be statistically justified (e.g., provision of a power analysis; see Appendix A, Experimental Design and Statistics)

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