Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC)

About the IACUC

UCR recognizes the scientific and ethical responsibility for the humane care and use of animals involved in research and education and enjoins all individuals involved to the highest standards of care and consideration.

UCR has established an Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) to function as the review body responsible for approval and oversight of activities involving the use of vertebrate animals at UCR in accordance with federal requirements, including the Animal Welfare Act and PHS Policy. The Committee, appointed by the Vice Chancellor for Research and Economic Development, is qualified through the experience and expertise of its members to oversee the institution's animal program, facilities, and procedures in coordination with the UCR Campus Veterinarian. Additionally, the IACUC is committed to promoting open and cooperative relationships with investigators and educating the UCR community concerning the ethical and regulatory standards for the humane care of animals.

IACUC Policies, Guidance, and Information for Faculty

Step 1: Determine if you need to submit an Animal Use Protocol (AUP)

An AUP is required for all research and teaching activities involving live vertebrate animals at UCR or sponsored by UCR. This includes:

  • All vertebrate animal activities (i.e., receiving, housing, maintaining, field studies, teaching uses, and lab experiments, including "gentling" treatments and non-invasive studies)
  • Vertebrate animal activities performed at other institutions under contract from UCR (e.g., contracting to have antibodies generated or new mouse strains developed; or when a UCR investigator is lead PI on a grant with subcontracts to other institutions).

Step 2: Training

  • Occupational Health Reviews

    Occupational Health Reviews

    Occupational Health Reviews must be completed before handling vertebrate animals in research and teaching.

    No one may enter the vivarium without the following:

    1. Clearance notification from the IACUC office and
    2. Completion of vivarium orientation with vivarium staff

    This applies to all animal users (PIs, lab managers, graduate students, etc.) working with laboratory animals. These safety considerations are in place to avoid exposure to (a) zoonotic diseases (infectious agents shared by humans and animals), (b) allergies to laboratory animals, particularly rodents, and (c) bites, scratches, and other injuries. All animal users are required to participate in the Occupational Health Program (OHP). 

    Enrollment in the OHP is described in the "Training Required Before Handling Vertebrate Animals in Research and Teaching" section. 

  • Training Required Before Handling Vertebrate Animals in Research and Teaching

    Training Required Before Handling Vertebrate Animals in Research and Teaching

    Federal regulations require that all individuals handling vertebrate animals receive proper training, including, but not limited to, federal law regarding animal use, species-specific handling and experiment-specific procedures, zoonotic diseases, methods that minimize the number of animals required to obtain valid results, and training in the specific procedures necessary for experiments. UCR uses an online training system for general training and has species-specific videos available. The IACUC Office and The Office of the Campus Veterinarian are available to provide hands-on training in various procedures. Training in project-specific procedures is the responsibility of the AUP PI and must be documented.

    The steps needed to enroll in the OHP and to complete IACUC required training are available in the Lab Training Checklist.

Step 3: Submit your AUP

AUPs may only be submitted by individuals meeting PI eligibility as defined by UCR Policy #527-3. Academic coordinators planning to use vertebrate animals in teaching may request an exception. Contact to request an exception.

To submit your Animal Use Protocol in Kuali, click here.

Training on submitting an AUP and more about Kuali can be found here.

  • IACUC Levels of Review

    IACUC Levels of Review

    IACUC Levels of Review
    Full Committee Review (FCR)
    The entire IACUC reviews protocols during a regularly scheduled meeting.
    Designated Member Review (DMR)
    Protocols are reviewed by a designated IACUC member.

    Regardless of review level, all new AUPs may be subject to additional review by EH&S and the Office of the Campus Veterinarian to review potential hazardous materials and to ensure animal welfare is upheld. Protocols that request conducting surgeries outside of the vivarium require scientific justification and are subject to semi-annual inspections by the IACUC as mandated by federal regulations.

  • Submission Deadlines for Full AUPs and Amendments

    Submission Deadlines for Full AUPs and Amendments

    Documents Submission Deadline For IACUC review in the month of Committee Meeting Dates
    Thursday, December 21, 2023 January Monday, January 8, 2024
    Monday, January 29, 2024 February Monday, February 12, 2024
    Monday, February 19, 2024 March Monday, March 11, 2024
    Monday, March 18, 2024 April Monday, April 8, 2024
    Monday, April 22, 2024 May Monday, May 13, 2024
    Monday, May 20, 2024 June Monday, June 10, 2024
    Monday, June 17, 2024 July Monday, July 8, 2024
    Monday, July 22, 2024 August Monday, August 12, 2024
    Monday, August 19, 2024 September Monday, September 9, 2024
    Monday, September 23, 2024 October Monday, October 14, 2024
    Monday, October 21, 2024 November Monday, November 18, 2024
    Monday, November 18, 2024 December Monday, December 9, 2024
  • Things all Animal Users/Handlers at UCR Should Know

    Things all Animal Users/Handlers at UCR Should Know

    • All individuals must complete the training and occupational health requirements prior to handling live vertebrate animals in research and teaching
    • PIs are responsible for ensuring each laboratory member receives hands-on training for any procedure they perform. Training may be performed by the PI, a designated and experienced laboratory member, an experienced colleague, or as arranged with the Office of the Campus Veterinarian. Laboratory members should not attempt procedures they have not received training for or do not yet feel confident in performing.
    • Training performed in the laboratory must be documented.
    • AUPs and implementation by investigators must minimize potential pain and distress by:
      • Ensuring laboratory members have been trained appropriately, are competent in the procedure, and are familiar with determining if the animal is experiencing pain or distress.
      • All laboratory members are familiar with and have access to the latest approved AUP.
      • All procedures, including the use of anesthesia, analgesia, and animal monitoring, are performed according to the AUP.
    • Collaborations involving the treatment of animals under more than one AUP must be approved on an AUP.
    • The Campus Veterinarian must be contacted when adverse or unexpected events occur regarding the use of animals. An unexpected event is any occurrence that requires veterinary care or causes unintentional pain, distress, or mortality.
    • IACUC must be aware of and have approved the sequence of all treatments a single animal will be exposed to undergo.
    • Euthanasia must be performed as approved in the AUP. Euthanasia procedures must adhere to the AVMA guidelines for the euthanasia of animals.
    • Handle materials safely - PIs must ensure that lab members receive appropriate safety training (both the courses offered by EH&S and in-lab training for lab-specific procedures).
    • PIs and laboratory staff listed on an approved AUP should be familiar with UCR IACUC policies and guidelines.
    • Animals housed in the UCR vivarium must be ordered through the Office of the Campus Veterinarian unless otherwise authorized by the Campus Veterinarian.
    • No procedure shall be performed on any animal unless the procedure has been reviewed and approved by the IACUC.
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