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Personnel Training and Qualifications Policy (IACUC)

Last updated on February 6, 2024 4 min read Personnel Training and Qualifications Policy (IACUC)

Purpose

Boston University (BU) is committed to observing Federal policies and regulations and the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC) International standards for the humane care and use of animals. This policy describes the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) training requirements for individuals involved in the care and use of live vertebrate animals.

Covered Parties

This policy is applicable to all persons responsible for conducting research, teaching, training, breeding, and related activities, hereinafter referred to collectively as “activities”, involving live vertebrate animals conducted at or under the auspices of Boston University.

University Policy

All personnel responsible for activities involving live vertebrate animals must be appropriately trained and qualified.

Principal Investigators (PI) are responsible for providing their staff with the appropriate training and supervision to ensure that all members of the project team know how to safely perform their functions under IACUC-approved protocols and with humane care and use of animals they use. The PI must ensure all research personnel listed on an IACUC-approved protocol have read and understand that protocol. The PI must also ensure that all research personnel are competent to handle animals and perform procedures as described in the IACUC-approved protocol.

PIs must include the qualifications and previous training of all research personnel in their IACUC protocol. Specific information must be provided regarding the specific procedures an individual will perform and the species with which they will work, as well as the experience they have with these procedures and species. The IACUC reviews this information to determine if any additional training is required prior to approval or initiation of the research.

Required IACUC training includes:

  • All personnel working with animals must complete the one-time IACUC Orientation training and quiz (accessible via BioRAFT) prior to engaging in any animal activities.
  • All personnel working with animals must also complete the Working with the IACUC training and quiz (accessible via BioRAFT) prior to engaging in animal activities and every three years thereafter.
  • Both trainings are designed to inform the trainee of IACUC topics, including the Animal Welfare Act and Regulations, Public Health Service Policy, and basic IACUC guidelines and standards. Animal use protocols cannot be approved until this requirement is met by all persons listed on the protocol.
  • Personnel performing rodent survival surgery must attend an aseptic technique demonstration hosted by ASC Veterinary Services. One-time attendance is mandatory for all researchers below the rank of PI (PIs are exempted but invited to attend). New researchers (below the rank of PI) who intend to perform rodent survival surgical procedures are required to attend a demonstration before the animal use protocol can be approved. Researchers can schedule training via BioRAFT.

In addition to the IACUC requirements listed above, other training requirements that must be met, when applicable, include:

  • All personnel responsible for performing survival surgery on any species must complete Aseptic Surgery training prior to initiating any recovery surgeries. The training involves completing four online learning modules (accessible via BioRAFT) and then meeting with the Veterinary Services trainer to review the specific surgical protocol. Personnel responsible for performing rodent survival surgery must complete Aseptic Surgery training in addition to the aseptic technique demonstration described above.
  • All personnel working with animals must complete all Environmental Health & Safety training (e.g., laboratory safety, biosafety, radiation safety, laser safety, anesthetic gas safety, etc.) as applicable to the work and type of laboratory where the work is conducted, prior to engaging in animal activities.
  • All personnel working with animals must complete all Animal Science Center training (e.g. new researcher orientation, facility tours, Herpes B virus, etc.) as applicable to the work and location where the work is conducted, prior to engaging in animal activities.

Medical clearance is required from the Research Occupational Health Program (ROHP) before starting work with animals. All personnel working with animals must complete the Job Risk Assessment and Health Questionnaire initially and annually. Personnel work environments as indicated in the Job Risk Assessment form will determine screenings required to obtain medical clearance. Screenings may include TB testing, immunization, and/or respirator clearance. Please refer to the ROHP Requirements for Medical Clearance.

Responsible Parties

Principal Investigators are responsible for: preparing and submitting IACUC applications; making modifications in applications in order secure IACUC approval; ensuring adherence to approved protocols; ensuring humane care and use of animals; ensuring that all personnel have completed required training; and reporting any adverse events to the IACUC.

The Animal Welfare Program and the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee are responsible for overseeing policy implementation and ensuring compliance with this policy.

Definitions

All personnel working with animals: means all individuals responsible for the conduct of research, teaching, training, breeding, and related activities involving live vertebrate animals at or under the auspices of BU.

Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC): means the committee that is responsible for oversight and evaluation of the entire Animal Care and Use Program and its components as described in The Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, Eighth Edition. Its oversight functions include review and approval of proposed animal use (protocol review) and of proposed significant changes to animal use; regular inspection of facilities and animal use areas; regular review of the Program; ongoing assessment of animal care and use; and establishment of a mechanism for receipt and review of concerns involving the care and use of animals at the institution.

Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals

Animal Welfare Act and Animal Welfare Regulations

Review and Approval of Materials Submitted to the IACUC

History

Effective Date: 02/06/2024
Next Review Date: 02/01/2027

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