Office of Research Search

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

What is an IACUC?

According to U.S. federal law, institutions that use laboratory animals for research or instructional purposes must establish an Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) to oversee and evaluate all aspects of the institution's animal care and use program.

Can applications be handwritten?

No. Only typed or computer printed applications are accepted for review. Handwritten protocol forms are not accepted and will be returned to the applicant.

How long is a protocol approval good for?

Protocol approval is good for 1 year from the date that it was approved. All projects are required to be renewed annually.

How do I renew my protocol for continued approval?

Eight weeks before the approval expiration date, the Office of Research Compliance will send a reminder to the Principal Investigator to complete an Animal Protocol Continuing Review Form and return it to AD15. Once the form is received it will be forwarded to the IACUC Committee for review and renewed approval.

What do I do if my protocol expires or is withdrawn from consideration?

If a protocol expires or is withdrawn from consideration, a new Animal Protocol Form will need to be submitted for review and approval by the IACUC Committee.

Federal regulations indicate that approval can only be granted for a one-year period. The Principal Investigator is responsible for ensuring that his/her approval does not lapse.

How could my protocol expire or be withdrawn from consideration?

A protocol will expire if the PI does not return his/her Animal Protocol Continuing Review form. IF the PI returns his/her continuing review form after the expiration date, form cannot be accepted. A new Animal Protocol Form will need to be submitted for review and approval by the IACUC Committee.

A protocol will be withdrawn from consideration either at the PI's request or if the PI fails to respond to additional information. In either case, a new Animal Protocol Form will need to be submitted for review and approval by the IACUC Committee.

What if I don't want to renew my protocol?

The Principal Investigator should sign the protocol expiration notice and return it to the Office of Research Compliance at AD15. In order to properly close the project file, the PI should provide a written summary as to whether the protocol met the objectives stated in the original (initial) application.

When should I report changes or modifications to my protocol?

By federal law and University Policy, PIs are required to notify the committee of any changes made to any currently active protocol. Typical changes may include, project personnel, numbers and species of animals, modifications to the experimental methods or procedures, special requirements for animal husbandry and housing, etc.

Must I complete the Animal Protocol Form if I use snails, shrimp, bees, worms, coral, or microorganisms in my research to teaching/instruction activities?

No. You need only submit an Animal Protocol Form if you use animals that have a vertebrae (backbones).

If I received word that my protocol was approved, when can I start my protocol?

You may start using animals immediately if you have been granted full approval.

Besides the protocol forms, should I submit anything else?

Yes, if you are performing any animal use activities that require special permits for work with endangered species, marine mammals, or specimen collection permits, you may be required to submit a copy of the documentation to the Office of Research Compliance. If you are working in cooperation with another institution that has an Animal Care and Use Committee, you will be required to furnish a copy of the protocol approval letter from that institution.

Must I have an approved protocol before I can order or house animals at the Animal Care Facility?

Yes, only PIs who have an approved protocol can place animal orders and/or house animals at these facilities.

I am in a rush to do my animal work, can my new protocol be granted preapproval status?

No. Animal work cannot begin until committee approval is granted. All protocol applications are required to undergo full committee review before a decision is rendered.