All animals at UMBC must be connected to an active IACUC approved animal protocol. Occasionally, situations occur where protocols become inactive (e.g., protocol approval expires, protocol is suspended), but animals remain in the animal facilities. In order to avoid euthanasia of valuable research animals, and to remain in compliance with regulatory requirements, the IACUC will allow principal investigators (PI) to transfer animals to the holding protocol for a maximum of 90 days. During this time, investigators are asked to take the necessary actions to gain re-approval of their animal use protocol in order to avoid forfeiture of their animals.
This procedure may also be used for:
- animals arriving prior to the arrival of a new faculty member, but an IACUC protocol has not yet been approved
- principal investigators who have left UMBC but whose animals cannot be immediately transferred to the new institution
Requests to place animals on the Animal Holding Protocol will be generated by the PI, the Attending Veterinarian (AV), or the IACUC Chair. Should the AV be contacted first by a PI, her office will inform the IACUC. PIs requesting a holding protocol will submit a Holding Protocol Request to the ORPC. Upon receipt the ORPC will forward the request to the AV for review and authorization of the transfer of animals to a holding protocol. All actions will be reported to the IACUC at the next regularly scheduled meeting.
The ORPC will notify animal care staff in writing that the transfer has been approved and, when applicable, the animal care staff will verify that the transfer has been completed and that no animals are being housed under the expired protocol. The maximum approval period of a holding is 90 days. Animals that remain on a holding protocol will be euthanized after the 90 day period.
Animals placed on a holding protocol will receive conventional husbandry, housing and care. Breeding to maintain viability of specific lines may occur under this protocol but the expansion of colony breeding is not authorized. Feeding and sanitation will be performed as expected for the species. Standard institutional environmental enrichment will be provided to all animals under this protocol. No surgery, research, teaching or experimental procedures are allowed.
The PI and animal care staff must notify the AV of any significant pre-existing health conditions prior to the transfer of animals to the holding protocol. Examples of important information include but are not limited to: existing surgical implants, zoonotic disease, special dietary needs, past surgical history, viral vectors, poor fecundity. Medical treatment and/or euthanasia will be performed by, and at the discretion of, attending veterinarian.
Animal care staff will be responsible for identifying the animals; this can be done at the cage level, on the animal room door, or both. Any costs or fees associated with maintaining animals on a holding protocol will be charged to the investigator (or department) while their animals are on the holding protocol.
*NOTE: Federal grant funds may NOT be used for support of any animals in a holding protocol status due to non-compliance or failure to obtain IACUC approval for a 3-year replacement protocol.
Upon IACUC approval of the PI’s protocol, the removal of a protocol suspension or the receiving institution where the former UMBC PI is currently employed is ready to accept animals will be removed from the Holding Protocol. The cage cards reflecting the approved and active UMBC IACUC protocol number will then be used.