Veterinary Care

Overview

Animal procedures will be carried out in full accordance with established standards set forth in the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, 8th edition (NIH Publication No. 85-23). Biocytogen Boston manages and maintains strict control of the animal facility and use at the Wakefield, MA campus. All animals shall be or have been legally obtained from suppliers licensed by the USDA or exempted according to 9 CFR, Chapter 1, Subchapter A – Animal Welfare, Parts 1-4.

Daily Care

Animal Care Technician provide routine daily care for all animals housed in the facility unless otherwise specified by the investigator. Animal care technicians provide daily observation and provision of food and water. Environmental conditions of mice are maintained as specified in the National Research Council’s Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals and the United States Animal Welfare Act (Section 2.1).

Unexpected Complications

If health concerns are observed, the Veterinary Standing Orders (link) are implemented. If health conditions fall outside the Veterinary Standing Orders, the Attending Veterinarian is contacted for consultation. If an animal’s condition cannot be treated successfully, including the minimization of pain or distress, the animals would be euthanized under the direction of the attending veterinarian or designee. Clinical signs associated with experimental conditions are handled as described in the applicable Animal Use Protocol approved by the IACUC.

Attending Veterinarian

The Attending Veterinarian makes on-site rounds visits in the animal facility quarterly, or more frequently as needed, and is available at all times by phone and email. If for some reason the Attending Veterinarian will be unavailable, then prior arrangements will be made with a designee veterinarian to be on call.

Rodent Pathogen Surveillance Program

Colonies of research rodents are susceptible to infection with a variety of bacterial, viral and parasitic agents. In many instances, these agents produce no clinical signs yet result in physiologic changes that may alter, and in some cases, invalidate research carried out on infected animals. In addition, a few agents may infect people working with animals. Therefore, it is important to maintain rodent research colonies free of infectious agents.

In order to minimize the chance of introducing infectious agents to our colonies, the university purchases animals only from reputable vendors who perform and report the results of extensive rodent health monitoring. Only animals that meet pre-established standards are accepted from the approved animal suppliers (link).

Surveillance Program Procedures

At Biocytogen Boston Animal Facility, a sentinel cage is maintained per Inovive rack that receives pooled soiled bedding at routine cage changes. This sentinel cage represents the whole cages on the rack via the dirty bedding. A couple of animals are housed in the sentinel cage to stir up the dust to allow particulate to migrate to the sentinel cage filter. The same sentinel cage filter must remain in place for the entire monitoring period of 13-weeks (a quarter) and then the filter is submitted to CRL Laboratory Testing Management for rodent pathogen screens.

Sentinel Pathogen Test Profile & Schedule

Room/Rack Surveillance Program Testing Interval
Agents Tested Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4
Immuno-competent mice Mouse parvoviruses (MVM/MPV), Mouse coronavirus (MHV), Murine rotavirus (MRV/EDIM), Mouse theilovirus (TMEV, GDVII), Pneumonia virus of mice, Fur mites (Myobia, Myocoptes, Radfordia), Pinworms (Aspiculuris, Syphacia), Spironucleus muris   Yes Yes Yes
Immuno-deficient mice Above plus: Corynebacterium bovis and Helicobacter species.

 

  Yes Yes Yes
All mice All Above plus: Adenovirus type 1 & 2 (MAV-1 & MAV-2), Reovirus (type 1, 2, 3, 4), Sendai virus, Ectromelia (mousepox), Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus, Lactate dehydrogenase elevating virus, New World hantavirus,Beta hemolytic Streptococcus groups B, C, G,Bordetella hinzii, Cilia-Associated Respiratory Bacillus,Citrobacter rodentium, Clostridium piliforme, Corynebacterium kutscheri, Klebsiella oxytoca, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Mycoplasma pulmonis, Pasteurella pneumotropica (Heyl & Jawetz), Pneumocystis murina,Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella species, Staphylococcus aureus, Streptobacillus moniliformis, Streptococcus pneumoniae Yes      
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