Introduction and Overview

Regulations Concerning the Use of Animals in Research First passed in 1966 as Public Law-89-544, the most recent amendment of the Animal Welfare Act (Public Law 99-198, Food Security Act) strengthened existing standards for proper laboratory animal care. It also included provisions for increased enforcement of the requirements outlined in the Act, mandated training for laboratory personnel, and provided for mechanisms to disseminate information about animal experiments. This latter provision was included to reduce unnecessary duplication of experiments. Requirements were included that deal with such issues as the need to explicitly consider alternative techniques, provide an enhanced physical environment to increase physical and psychological well-being, and the development of Institutional Animal Care and Use Committees (IACUCs).

The Animal Welfare Act

The IACUC consists of at least three members, including one not affiliated with the research facility and/or school and a doctor of veterinary medicine. The committee inspects its research facilities at least once every six months and reviews all proposals for research involving the use of animals. As part of the proposal review process, the committee evaluates procedures for pain and distress, proper use of analgesics and anesthetics, and the proper use of euthanasia if needed. In addition, the IACUC is charged with the responsibility to make sure that all procedures are carried out by qualified personnel and that alternatives have been seriously considered. Lastly, the IACUC is required to provide appropriate training for all personnel in the humane practice of animal maintenance and experimentation, appropriate testing and research methodology, and proper facility maintenance.


Bennett, B. T., Brown, M. J., & Schofield, J. C. (1990). Essentials for animal research: A primer. Available: The American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine.
National Research Council of the National Academies (2010). Guide for the care and use of laboratory animals. Washington, DC: Author.
Percy, D. H., & Barthold, S. W. (1993). Pathology of laboratory rodents and rabbits.
Ames, IA: Iowa State University Press. Public Law 99-198 (1986).
Code of Federal Regulations, Title 9, Subchapter A, Animal Welfare. Universities Federation of Animal Welfare (1987). The Universities Federation for Animal Welfare Handbook on the care and management of laboratory animals (6th ed.). New York: Churchhill Livingstone.

Investigator's Assurances

1. I am familiar with the aspects of the NIH Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals and/or the Animal Welfare Act that pertain to this research or instructional protocol and further certify that this protocol does not represent or include unnecessary duplication of previous research or instructional use of animals.
2. By June 1 of each year, I will provide the IACUC with an annual report containing the species and number of animals used in each of my approved protocols.
3. I will notify the IACUC, in writing, if animals purchased for this protocol are transferred to another investigator for use in a different protocol.

Assurance Document
Approval Letter

Which Form Should I Use?


When to fill out

New/3-year Renewal Protocol

  • New project
  • Resubmitting for renewal (every three years of ongoing project)

Annual Continuation

  • Annually for all active projects (including during 3-year renewal years)


  • When project ends


  • Amendment for existing project


For specific questions about information on this page, please contact: iacuc@gcsu.edu

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