Maintaining Your Lab
Compliance with Federal, State, and Institutional policies is an essential component of any animal care and use program. The list below was created to help investigators and avoid potential compliance issues:
A copy of the current IACUC approved protocol(s) must be immediately and conveniently available to all laboratory personnel. The personnel must be conversantly knowledgeable about the protocol and all procedures in which they are involved.
All activities must be conducted in accordance with the wording in the IACUC protocol. Everyone listed on your protocol must be keenly aware of the details of the protocol including (but not limited to):
- Procedures (survival, nonsurvival, surgical, and nonsurgical)
- Analgesia (dosages and times)
- Euthanasia (including secondary form of euthanasia where applicable).
Proper signage must be posted in your lab at all times, laminated if possible, and secured in visible areas using magnets or sanitizable (surgical) tape. The following signs are available for download and printing:
- Animal related injury procedures
- Emergency vet care
- Rodent Survival Surgery
- Reporting Concerns (animal welfare)
- Evacuation Procedures Signage
- NHP related injury
Hoods and biosafety cabinets must be certified annually.
Vaporizers such as isoflurane vaporizers must be certified every two years. Documentation must be available in the laboratory.
All personnel in the lab must be familiar with animal related injury procedures. This information is found on the animal related injury signage mentioned above, and personnel must be able to readily locate and reference this signage when questioned about animal-related injuries.
All personnel in the lab must understand and follow State and Federal Controlled Substances and prescription drug and device laws. See additional guidance, Controlled Substance Guidelines.
Secondary containers must be labeled with the name of the substance, the PI’s name, and an expiration date or open date (labeled accordingly "expiration date" or "open date").
Personnel must be aware of the approved transfer route for their animals (if applicable) and be able to describe it.
Food and beverages are never to be stored or consumed in labs
Personnel must not enter animal areas (other than their own) within 48 hours of exposure to their own animals.
Needles are not to be stored in vial stoppers and are not to be left uncapped. Dispose of sharps by using a sharps container located in the lab.
If survival surgeries are being performed, personnel must be able to describe the sterilization method used on the instruments. If personnel use their own autoclave, records must be maintained and be readily available in the lab.
Visitors to your lab need to obtain permission from the DLAR Clinical Director prior to their visit. To initiate permission to have a visitor, contact the DLAR at 412-648-8950.
See the latest issue of the newsletter for compliance Q&A and tips as well as feature information and education and training opportunities.
Previous issues are available in the Newsletter Archive.