Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University

Animal Care & Use Committee (IACUC)

Use of Hazardous Materials in Animals

The use of any of the following agents in animals requires the approval of the appropriate safety committee before approval of the animal protocol by the IACUC:

  • Chemical Carcinogens
  • Biohazards including Infectious Agents
  • Chemical Hazards
  • Toxins
  • Radioisotopes
  • Irradiation Human Origin Tissues
  • Recombinant DNA
  • Oligonuclcotides
  • Teratogens

Depending on the agent to be used, the committee with oversight of the use of that agent will require a completed internal form, an informative abstract of the work to be done and a standard operating procedure for the use of the agent in animals. In the standard operating procedures consideration should be given to the amount of hazardous agent to be used, its toxic level for both animals and humans (LD50) and its metabolism, if involved, so that decisions can be made about its presence in excreta and bedding that require special handling. The speed of the approval process is directly related to the completeness of the abstract and the standard operating procedures.

The use of hazardous chemicals including carcinogens, teratogens and toxins, is reviewed by the Laboratory Safety Committee (internal form RO-14).

The use of biohazardous etiological agents, recombinant DNA, as well as human blood, tissues, body fluids, and primary cells or cell lines are reviewed by the Institutional Biosafety Committee (internal form OSA-11). Under the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogen Standard, human materials, unless proven to be free of pathogens, must considered to be potentially contaminated with HIV, HBV, and other bloodborne pathogens and, therefore, the use of human materials requires BL2 containment conditions. The Institutional Biosafety Committee has given the IACUC the authority to approve animal protocols involving human material provided the animals are housed and the experiment is conducted under BL2 containment conditions.

The use of radioisotopes in research is the responsibility of the Nonhuman Use Radiation Subcommittee, and use of irradiation, that of the Radiation Safety Committee (internal form, RO-13). All animal protocols involving irradiation of animals in the Bodine Cancer Center, especially animals that have been treated with an infectious agent or human materials, require the approval of the Hospital Infection Control Committee before irradiation. The entire Bodine Cancer Center has been designated as a patient area. Dr. Phyllis Flomenberg (5-5161) of Infection Control should be consulted on such protocols. The Infection Control Committee must receive and review the research protocol, containing information on the proposed transport route, containment and environmental changes before it will approve any protocol. The Committee meets monthly. Send materials to:

Infection Control Committee
1015 Chestnut Street, Suite 610

Specimens of animal origin, especially cell lines, tumors or tissues from rodents, must be clearly defined and identified as to source. Evidence must be provided that rodent tissue have been MAP tested or otherwise proven to be free of adventitious pathogens which could pose a threat to other animals in the colony and/or your plan for maintaining adequate isolation indicated.

Specimens of human origin which are injected, transplanted or otherwise given to laboratory animals must be defined and identified as to source. All experiments involving human origin must be conducted at Biosafety level 2. Other precautions may be required for use of human origin tissue in immunocompromized hosts.

The use of human origin tissue or cells in animals does not require routine review by the Biosafety Committee unless known pathogenic organisms are associated with the specific materials.

Access the Office of Animal Resources website at Thomas Jefferson University.