Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC)

The Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) is here to assist researchers in understanding and complying with regulations governing animal subjects research conducted at Case Western Reserve University and its affiliates. Part of the Office of Research and Technology Management, the IACUC serves as the foundation for effective self-regulation of animal care and use. IACUC is responsible for reviewing all protocols involving live vertebrate animals, ensuring compliance with federal regulations, inspecting animal facilities and laboratories, and overseeing training and educational programs. IACUC’s overall role is to ensure the humane and sensitive care and use of animals.

The IACUC provides assistance to investigators in fulfilling their obligation to plan and conduct animal experiments in accordance with the highest scientific, humane and ethical principles.

Since membership on the committee is on a voluntary, part-time basis, CWRU has a full-time IACUC staff to handle the day-to-day affairs of the committee. The staff receives, reviews and distributes all submissions to the IACUC—such as animal protocols, annual reviews, protocol amendments and facility access requests. 

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CWRU’s animal care program is accredited by the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC), an international program that evaluates organizations that use animals in research, teaching or testing. 

What We Do

A pen checking off boxes on a piece of paper.
Protocols Submission and Modification

Before beginning any research involving animals, the investigator must have an IACUC-approved protocol. The IACUC Office is always prepared to help researchers navigate this process. 

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The annual review process provides an opportunity for the investigator to update the IACUC on work progress as well as provide information on any adverse or unanticipated events. Initiating assistance from one of the veterinarians or the Post-Approval Monitoring (PAM) Team can facilitate research outcomes

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Training and Education

All personnel involved with the care and use of animals must be adequately educated, trained and/or qualified in basic principles of laboratory animal science to help ensure high-quality science and animal well-being (Guide p.15). The IACUC administers a tailored training program geared to ensure research faculty and staff are knowledgeable and proficient in their protocol roles.

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Animal Welfare

Animal Welfare is the responsibility of everyone. Investigators are accountable for the protection of the research animals in their care from the earliest stages of planning until a study is completed. The collective expertise of the IACUC is readily available to the investigator at all stages to facilitate optimal outcomes for research and animal welfare.