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UH Requirements For Vertebrate Animal Use

I. Overview of Federal Mandates

Federal mandates, primarily the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal Welfare Act (AWA) of 1966 and the 1985 amendments to the AWA, and the Public Health Service (PHS) Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, referred to also as the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Policy, require an institutional animal-use oversight committee. The committee is referred to as the "Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee" or more commonly known as the IACUC. This committee is further required by this University and is campus policy.

Failure to comply with federal standards and codes may result in civil or criminal prosecution and the suspension of animal research activities at the entire institution. Furthermore, an institution's failure to comply with federal laws, regulations, codes, and policies that govern animal use may lead to severe consequences, one of which is the termination of federally funded support for projects.

Vertebrate animal use must be reviewed and approved by the UH IACUC prior to the use occurring. Committee review is required regardless of animal use site, funding source, species, or animal number. An approved protocol must be procured by all University faculty, staff, or students using vertebrate animals in research, teaching or testing. There are some situations were a protocol is not required. Inquiries in these matters are to be directed to the Institutional Animal Care & Use Committee, c/o Regulatory Compliance Officer and Executive Secretary (telephone 956-4446/facsimile 956-4448).

II. Information Required For Protocol Applications

The applicant is required to furnish a non-technical description of the research/teaching/training activity, a justification for the use of animal, description of all of the procedures to be performed on the animals, and precautions taken to assure humane care and treatment of animal subjects. Information is required on providing the species of animals proposed, numbers of the animals, animal holding facilities, use of anesthetics/analgesics/paralytic agents, methods of restraint, survival/non-survival surgery procedures, the methods of euthanasia and the final disposition of animal subjects.

Thorough preparation of the protocol application facilitates the review process and reduces the chance of delay in initiating projects and in the review of applications. The animal use protocol applicants are advised to write the applications in non-technical terms as scientist and non-scientist alike will review the submittal.

III. The IACUC Review Process:

The protocol review process normally takes at least 4-5 weeks. Problems associated with the application (e.g., additional information required, controversial topics, etc.) may cause the review and approval process to be delayed.

Protocol applications must be received by IACUC Regulatory Compliance Officer & Executive Secretary no later than the second Wednesday of each month. All applications will be reviewed by a quorum at regularly scheduled IACUC business meetings held on the third Thursday of each month. No exceptions will be made for late submittals. If an application is not received by the second Wednesday deadline for that month, the application will be deferred to the next review cycle.

At the convened meeting, the committee reviews new applications, renewed protocols, and revisions to previously approved applications, as well as discuss remaining or additional issues related to proposed animal use. Following the meeting, investigators/applicants are notified of the status of their applications in writing, generally, within 3-5 working days.

A protocol approval is valid for a maximum of one year from the date of the meeting at which it was approved. Multiple year protocol applications must be renewed by the applicant and reviewed by the committee annually.

IV. Extramural Funding Agencies:

Be advised that the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) require verification of animal use approval within 60 days after the receipt date for which a grant proposal is submitted. If verification of institutional animal use approval is not received by the extramural funding agency deadline(s), the grant application will be considered incomplete and deferred to the next review cycle. Many other funding agencies follow the policies of the NIH and NSF which allow a 60-day grace period for receipt of the verification of institutional approved animal use. Whenever possible, an animal use protocol application should be sent to the IACUC for consideration before an application for extramural funding is submitted to an agency.

For more information Contact the University of Hawaii Compliance Officer:

University of Hawaii
2538 McCarthy Mall
Snyder Hall 410
Honolulu, HI 96822
Phone: (808) 956-4552, (808) 956-4446
Fax: (808) 956-5785
Mr. Norman Magno at nmagno@hawaii.edu
Ms. Denise Yee at deniseye@hawaii.edu

Web Page Maintained by: sylviak@hawaii.edu
Last modified: [10-7-02]