Additional Info - IACUC

Use of Animal Tissues


Use of tissues from animals euthanatized for other research or teaching purposes reduces the number of animals needed for teaching and research. Tissue sharing is in keeping with the "3 Rs" (i.e., reduction, refinement, replacement) of laboratory animal use.

PHS grant applicants using shared animal tissues or slaughterhouse materials are advised to specify the origins of the tissues when describing their proposed use in an application, especially if the "no" box is checked on the vertebrate animal block of the face page.

An explanation in the application that the tissues will come from dead animals as a by-product of other IACUC-approved studies, or from a slaughterhouse, will help avoid delays in the peer-review process.

USF Requirements for Animal Tissue Use

In order to document that appropriate practices of acquisition, use, and disposition of animal tissues are followed, an electronic IACUC (eIACUC) application must be submitted whenever animal tissues are requested from an IACUC-approved protocol, another institution, or other source.

Information regarding electronic applications to the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) is viewable at IACUC Applications

All Principal Investigators and research staff that desire to use animal tissues only must be certified by the IACUC. Certification is accomplished by completing and uploading the required documentation found at IACUC Certification of Research Personnel

Proposals involving live animals as a source of fresh tissue, or that involve project-specific antemortem manipulations, must be submitted using a research or teaching application.

Acquisition of Animal Tissues

In order to document appropriate practices of tissue acquisition, the source of animal tissues must be identified, (e.g., from other IACUC approved protocols, slaughterhouses, or by-product of commercial fishery).

In addition, The PI must have knowledge of all regulations pertaining to the acquisition of animal tissues under study, have obtained all permits necessary for carrying out the proposed studies prior to their initiation, and ensure that studies will be in accordance with all wildlife regulations.

Shipping and receiving of animal tissues/specimens must be conducted in accordance with federal safety and importation guidelines and regulations. The PI must act in accordance with the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service regulations regarding the limits on importation of animals or tissues that may have been exposed to an exotic livestock or poultry disease agent, and the limits on the importation of plants and other vegetable matter. The PI must act in accordance with the Public Health Service Foreign Quarantine Regulations (42 CFR 71.54) which govern the importation and transfer of etiologic agents and vectors of human disease. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regulations must also be followed. The movement of other non-infectious materials such as formalin-fixed tissues, sterile cell cultures, and other preserved tissues or materials where no evidence or indication exists that they contain an infectious agent of animal or public health significance are not governed by these regulations.

Occupational Health and Safety

Occupational health and safety principles require that personnel using animal tissues know the hazards associated with their work, understand how these hazards are controlled, have safe practices, and use proper personnel protective equipment and supplies.

The use of fresh or frozen animal tissue may pose a risk to the health of researchers and technicians through the transfer of disease (zoonosis) such as brucellosis, leptospirosis, and listeriosis. The University maintains a program for occupational health and safety of employees working with animals. The PI must ensure that prior to beginning research involving fresh or frozen animals and/or animal tissues, personnel/students are familiar with the health risks associated with the species of origin involved by reviewing relevant Occupational Health & Safety information.