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IACUC and Animal Welfare

This page is designed to help you find information and resources about animal welfare and preparing IACUC protocols


The regulations of the US Animal Welfare Act (AWA), specifically the 1985 Amendment, require that investigators provide Institutional Animal Care and Use Committees (IACUC) with documentation demonstrating that alternatives to procedures that may cause more than momentary pain or distress to the animals have been considered and that activities do not unnecessarily duplicate previous experiments. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Animal Care Policy #12,

" the narrative should include:

  • the name(s) of the databases searched (due to the variation in subject coverage and sources used, one database is seldom adequate);
  • the date the search was performed;
  • the time period covered by the search; and
  • the search strategy (including scientifically relevant terminology) used.

The VCU IACUC provides oversight to the VCU research community to ensure these requirements are met. Please consult with a librarian if you would like assistance with your database search.