Ensuring that All Animal Experimentation is Conducted in Compliance with the National Standards

The principal investigator is the key person responsible for ensuring that all animal use and manipulations are conducted according to the procedures approved in the protocol, and that all guidelines for humane treatment and use are met. The principal investigator is responsible for the conduct of all the people associated with the protocol; graduate students, research technicians, undergraduate students.

UACC monitoring of the animals while the research is in progress occurs in several ways and is an ongoing part of the animal care and use program.

Ethical Review of Animal Use Protocols

All proposed use of animals for research, teaching, testing and display must receive ethical review, and be approved by the UACC, before the animals are obtained and the work initiated. Requests to use animals must be submitted on the appropriate animal use protocol form.

Procedures for Ethics Review of Animal Use Protocols

Ethical review of animal use protocols is performed by the UACC Animal REB. The Animal REB meets monthly on the fourth Wednesday of the month. Deadline for receipt of new protocols in the Research Services & Ethics Office for review that month is the first Friday of the month.

Annual Review of Ongoing Protocols

Ethics approval of animal-based research protocols is issued for one year at a time, in compliance with the CCAC guidelines and the UACC Terms of Reference. If the research project continues beyond one year, the principal investigator must submit a completed "Annual Review Report" form to the Research Services & Ethics Office prior to the one-year anniversary approval date. A reminder of the upcoming annual review will be sent to the principal investigator at least two months prior to the anniversary approval date. If the Annual Review Report form is not received by the anniversary approval date, the Research Services & Ethics Office will send a second reminder to the principal investigator indicating that the study will be closed one month after the anniversary date. If the Annual Review Report form is not received within one month of the second reminder, the protocol will be considered "completed".

Protocol Modifications

During the course of the year (prior to the annual review), if any changes are required (e.g. different species or strain, increase in numbers of animals, change in animal procedures) these modifications must first be approved by the AREB, before the changes can be incorporated into the research program. Modification requests must be submitted on the Animal Use Protocol (AUP) Modification Form. Determination as to whether a protocol modification is required, follows the UACC Procedures on Submission of a Modification to an Existing Animal Use Protocol.

Post-Approval Review of Animal Use Protocols

A formal, structured Post-Approval Review (PAR) of animal use protocols, supplementing the activities already in place at the University is currently under development.

The purposes of the Post-Approval Review Program are:

  • To ensure the well-being and humane care and use of all animals
  • To ensure compliance with the national standards of experimental animal care and use as set out in the CCAC guidelines and policies
  • To facilitate good science – good animal care and well-being equals good science
  • To work with research staff in a collegial and supportive manner to confirm accurate and consistent protocol performance
  • To be a resource to the research community
  • To protect the institution

Provincial and Federal Permits

It is difficult to generalize about provincial/territorial permits. In most provinces/territories, the authority for species other than migratory birds protected by the federal Migratory Birds Convention Act falls under the permitting jurisdiction of the provincial/territorial Natural Resources Department. Having an Environment Canada Scientific Research Permit may not satisfy all permit requirements for research. Contact the appropriate provincial/territorial Department of Natural Resources for more complete information.

Facility Inspection Committee

Inspection of All Facilities for Housing Animals
Formal, annual inspections of all animal facilities are conducted by the UACC Facilities Inspection Committee.

Related Links Regarding Housing of Animals
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) webiste, under its Science Group
tab provides some guidelines on what to look for re: housing and care for a variety of species, geared
toward members of ethics review boards.