Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee

Guiding Principles

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Rollins College established the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) to safeguard the welfare of experimental vertebrate animals and cephalopods and to promote professional research. As part of this mission, the IACUC reviews all experiments involving vertebrate or cephalopod subjects to ensure that a high standard of animal care is adhered to in line with the latest laboratory veterinary practices, that the use of animals and their potential discomfort is minimized, that alternatives to animal experiments be used when possible, and that benefits of animal research accrue and are proportional to expected animal distress.  In addition to protocol review, IACUC inspects animal housing facilities and promotes the education of students and researchers in ethical issues and best practices in the handling, care, housing, and treatment of laboratory animals.

The goal of the IACUC is to work with administration, faculty, staff, and student researchers in a collegial way to enhance the validity of their research by helping to ensure that projects involving animal subjects adhere to established ethical, moral, and legal standards.  Animal research is any activity developed for the purpose of collecting and organizing data from laboratory animals in such a manner as to test hypotheses, address research questions, contribute to generalizable knowledge, or demonstrate phenonmena or techniques to students in coursework or research experiences.  The IACUC reviews proposals to confirm that the project design provides safeguards for research participants.

Research proposals at Rollins College that involve vertebrate animal subjects or cephalopods should guarantee that:

  • Ethical and moral standards are in compliance with federal guidelines
  • Alternatives to animal experiments have been considered but could not evaluate the hypotheses to be addressed
  • A minimum number of animals is used to adequately address experimental goals
  • Rare or highly complex animal models are used only when common and simpler animal models would fail to provide a resolution to experimental hypotheses
  • All attempts to foresee and minimize potential animal distress have been considered and all safeguards that do not compromise the goals of the experiment are used
  • Experiments are conducted by qualified personnel with sufficient training and resources to accomplish experimental goals and minimize the discomfort of animal subjects
  • Protocols are informed be the latest best practices in animal care