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IACUC Glossary

Find definitions to terms and acronyms relevant to IACUC.

AAALAC: AAALAC, International is a private, nonprofit organization that promotes the humane treatment of animals in science through a voluntary accreditation program. UCSD has been continuously accredited since 1980.

AALAS: American Association for Laboratory Animal Science

ACLAM: American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine

Ag Guide: Guide for the Care and Use of Agricultural Animals in Agriculture Research and Teaching; the Ag Guide was produced by the Consortium for Developing a Guide for the Care and Use of Agricultural Animals in Agricultural Research and Teaching; copies may be obtained from the Federation of Animal Science Societies.

Animal: PHS Policy defines an animal as "any live, vertebrate animal used or intended for use in research, research training, experimentation, or biological testing, or for related purposes." The Animal Welfare Act Regulations (AWAR) define an animal as "any live or dead dog, cat, nonhuman primate, guinea pig, hamster, rabbit, or any other warm-blooded animal, which is being used or is intended for use for research, teaching, testing, experimentation, or exhibition purposes, or as a pet. This term excludes birds, and rats and mice bred for use in research." The IACUC ensures the campus is in compliance with all regulations by applying the AWAR and PHS regulations to all vertebrate animal use on campus for teaching and research. The IACUC considers embryos and fetuses as vertebrate animals if their CNS is sufficiently developed to feel pain.

Animal Facility: An animal facility is any and all areas, buildings, enclosures, rooms or vehicles, including satellite facilities used for: animal confinement, breeding, experiments including surgical manipulation, maintenance or transport. Animals may be held outside an animal holding facility for a period of less than 12 hours without IACUC approval except for survival surgery areas. Locations where animals are held for more than 12 hours become a satellite facility requiring justification of, and prior approval by, the IACUC, and approval of husbandry plans and physical plant.

APHIS: The branch of the USDA responsible for setting and enforcing USDA policy on the care and use of AWA covered species.

Aseptic Surgical Procedure: Surgery performed using procedures that limit microbial contamination so that significant infection or suppuration does not occur.

Attending veterinarian: A person who has graduated from a veterinary school accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association's Council on Education, or has a certificate issued by the American Veterinary Medical Association's Education Commission for Foreign Veterinary Graduates, or has received equivalent formal education: has received training and/or experience in the species being attended; and who has direct or delegated authority for animals at a facility subject to the jurisdiction of the Secretary of Agriculture.

AVMA: American Veterinary Medical Association

AWA: Animal Welfare Act as defined in title 9, subchapter A of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Conflict of Interest: Any situation in which financial or personal obligations may compromise or present the appearance of compromising an individual's or group's professional judgment in conducting, reviewing, or reporting research. Conflicts of interest may arise because of the intellectual property involved in many research discoveries or industry-academic partnerships, from financial incentives pharmaceutical or biotech companies may offer researchers or physicians for conducting trials or enrolling subjects, or due to particular role relationships.

Disinfection: The chemical or physical process that involves the destruction of pathogenic organisms. All disinfectants are effective against vegetative forms of organisms, but not necessarily spores.

Euthanasia: the humane destruction of an animal accomplished by a method that produces rapid unconsciousness and subsequent death without evidence of pain or distress, or a method that utilizes anesthesia produced by an agent that causes painless loss of consciousness and subsequent death.

Grant Proposal: The application and all supporting documents submitted to a funding agency; also includes any detailed project description for pilot studies, graduate and undergraduate student projects, etc.

IACUC (Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee): The Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) is mandated under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and the Health Research Extension Act (HREA). The IACUC is charged under the AWA with representing "….society's concerns regarding the welfare of animal subjects …". The CEO is charged with appointing an IACUC but may delegate this authority to a senior administrator. The IACUC reports to the IO. The IACUC is required to perform semiannual program evaluations as a means of overseeing the animal care and use program. The IACUC reviews and approves animal use protocols. Its decision to withhold approval may not be overruled by the IO. It is also authorized to investigate concerns involving the care and use of animals and has the authority to suspend an activity involving animals if it determines that the activity is not being conducted in accordance with a description of the activity approved by the IACUC.

ILAR: Institute for Laboratory Animal Research

IO (Institutional Official): The Institutional Official is the individual who has the authority to sign the Institution's Assurance, making a commitment on behalf of the university that the requirements of the Public Health Service policy will be met. The Institutional Official at UCSD is Dr. Arthur B. Ellis, Vice Chancellor of Research.

Major Surgery: Any surgical intervention that penetrates and exposes a body cavity; any procedure that has the potential for producing permanent physical or physiological impairment; and/or any procedure associated with orthopedics or extensive tissue dissection or transection.

Minor Surgery: Any surgical intervention that neither penetrates and exposes a body cavity nor produces permanent impairment of physical or physiologic function. Examples are superficial vascular cutdown, and percutaneous biopsy.

NABR: National Association for Biomedical Research

NIH: National Institutes of Health; the National Institutes of Health is the steward of medical and behavioral research for the Nation, with 27 institutes and centers. It is an Agency under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

NRC: National Research Council; the National Research Council is part of the National Academies, which also comprise the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering and Institute of Medicine. They are private, nonprofit institutions that provide science, technology and health policy advice under a congressional charter.

OLAW: Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare

PHS (Public Health Service): The Public Health Service includes the Alcohol, Drug Abuse and Mental Health Administration; the Centers for Disease Control; the Food and Drug Administration; the Health Resources and Services Administration; the National Institutes of Health; and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, Department of Health and Human Services.

PI (Principal Investigator): The primary person in charge of a project which uses animals; normally the awardee of a grant or a faculty member.

PRIM&R: Public Responsibility in Medicine & Research; PRIM&R is dedicated to creating, implementing, and advancing the highest ethical standards in the conduct of research. PRIM&R's conferences, educational programs, and training resources serve the full array of individuals and organizations involved in biomedical and behavioral/social science research.

Quorum: A simple majority of the voting members of the IACUC.

Regulations: Those portions of IACUC policies and procedures which are mandated by federal, state, or local laws and ordinances; federal laws and ordinances include the AWA, PHS Policy, Health Research Extension Act of 1985, U.S. Government Principles for the Utilization and Care of Vertebrate Animals Used in Testing, Research, and Training, Guide, and Ag Guide.

RVT: Registered Veterinary Technician

SCAW: Scientists Center for Animal Welfare

Sterilization: The process whereby all viable microorganism are eliminated or destroyed. The criterion of sterilization is the failure of organisms to grow if a growth supporting medium is supplied.

Study Area: Any building room, area, enclosure, or other containment outside of a core facility or centrally designated or managed area in which animals are housed for more than 12 hours.

University Policy: Those portions of IACUC policies and procedures which are not mandated by law, but are required by the IACUC and the Institutional Official. Deviation from policy is allowed only with prior approval from the IACUC or Institutional Official.

USDA: United States Department of Agriculture