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December 19, 2016

Score Sheets and Postoperative Analgesia

This month’s edition of Laboratory Animals (Volume 50, Issue 6, December 2016) features a special edition: Score Sheets and Postoperative Analgesia, with guest editors Huw Golledge and Paula Jirkoff.

December 13, 2016

New Definition for Major Recommendations

Read the Assessment Report

The CCAC policy: Recommendations made in CCAC assessment reports has been revised to include a new definition for the term “Major Recommendation”. When used in assessment reports, “Major” now refers solely to immediate and significant threats to animal health or welfare found during a CCAC visit.

The CCAC has also developed an accompanying document, the Frequently Asked Questions: Recommendations made in CCAC assessment reports, to help institutions effectively implement this policy.

November 30, 2016
Hand holding pen over graphic on paper

Career Opportunity at the CCAC

The CCAC is seeking a Senior Research Analyst.

Learn more about this opportunity in our Careers Section.

November 23, 2016

Final call for papers:
Measuring animal welfare and applying scientific advances - Why is it still so difficult?

Submissions should feature the title of the proposed presentation, the nature of the presentation – talk or poster, and the name and full contact details of all contributors. Abstracts must be in English and should be no longer than 400 words. Full details on formatting these can be found on the UFAW website.

Deadline for submission of abstracts is November 30, 2016.

Further details on this meeting can be found on the Universities Federation for Animal Welfare website or on the UFAW Facebook page.

November 16, 2016

Animal Models for Microbiome Research: Advancing Basic and Translational Science

Join the ILAR Roundtable for a free two-day workshop on December 19-20, 2016 to examine animal models of microbiome research. Invited speakers will discuss challenges of standardization and biological variability in using gnotobiotic model organisms, examine the translatability of preclinical studies to humans, identify alternative model organisms that can be used in microbiome research, and discuss strategies for expanding the infrastructure and tools for conducting studies in these types of models. Click here to view the final agenda, including speakers and topics. This workshop will be held at 500 5th Street NW, Washington, DC and will be freely available via webcast. We invite you to join us in person or via webcast.

Please register to attend today!

November 8, 2016
Cover of the CCAC Annual Report 2015-2016

Our 2015-2016 Annual Report is Now Available

Discover the latest developments and activities related to the CCAC’s strategic plan and objectives, as well as our plans for the future. The CCAC thanks all those who work tirelessly to advance animal ethics and care in Canadian science, helping to bring the CCAC’s mandate and vision to life.

October 25, 2016

Career Opportunity at the CCAC

The CCAC is seeking an Associate Director of Assessment.

Learn more about this opportunity in our Careers Section.

October 7, 2016

Join Us in Saskatoon for the
CCAC National Workshop 2017!

Hotel Delta Bessborough

All those with an interest in the ethical use and care of animals in science are invited to join us in Saskatoon for the CCAC National Workshop on Saturday, June 3, 2017.

This event will be held in conjunction with the FRAME Training School in Experimental Design, hosted by the University of Saskatchewan (to be held May 31 to June 2, 2017).

Be sure to mark June 3, 2017 in your calendars, and stay tuned for more information coming in early 2017!

September 26, 2016

Efficient Breeding of Genetically Engineered Animals.

The Home Office, responsible for overseeing animal-based research in the UK has developed an Assessment Framework to assist institutions consider how best to manage efficient breeding of genetically-engineered animals.

September 19, 2016

The Design of Animal Experiments: Reducing the use of animals in research through better experimental design

The Second Edition of this publication on experimental design is now available. Revised by the original authors, Michael Festing et al., The Design of Animal Experiments is intended for all research scientists who use laboratory animals, with the aim of helping them to design their own experiments more effectively and/or to improve their ability to communicate with professional statisticians when necessary.

September 12, 2016

A Good Death?
Report of the Second Newcastle Meeting on Laboratory Animal Euthanasia

In 2013, the NC3Rs and Newcastle University co-hosted a workshop on the welfare implications of different euthanasia methods for mice, rats and zebrafish. The recently published report presents a summary of findings presented at the meeting, an overview of the current (2016) understanding of the welfare impact of various euthanasia methods, along with recommendations to help inform good practice.

August 29, 2016

AltTox.org revised Table of Validated and Accepted Alternative Methods

AltTox maintains a table of alternative methods similar to the CCAC Three Rs Microsite Alternative Test Methods Table. Both tables provide information about the alternative tests and whether regulatory agencies will accept data resulting from the use of these tests.

August 22, 2016

Head mask for cancer patients adapted as a refinement for primate research

A study published recently in the Journal of Neuroscience Methods describes a new Non-invasive Head Immobilization System (NHIS) as an alternative to surgery for macaque monkeys used in neurobiology research.

August 16, 2016
Gilles Demers

In Memoriam: Dr. Gilles Demers

It is with profound sadness that the CCAC announces the death of Dr. Gilles Demers. Gilles passed away near Montréal, QC, on August 10, 2016. Gilles had an outstanding career as a veterinarian, and worked for 22 years as an Assessment Director with the CCAC. He retired from the CCAC in 2015.

Read more

August 15, 2016

Animal models for CNS safety pharmacology under the spotlight

The pharmaceutical industry has been working to assess the relevance of rodent central nervous system (CNS) safety pharmacology studies in predicting what happens in first-in-human phase I studies. The findings published in Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology have important implications for reducing attrition in the drug development pipeline and in reducing animal use.

August 11, 2016

Automated monitoring of mouse behaviour in social home cage groups

A paper reporting a new automated home cage behavioural monitoring system for mice has been published in the journal Frontiers in Behavioural Neuroscience.

August 10, 2016
Review the draft

Don’t Miss Your Chance to Review the CCAC Guidelines on Air Quality

Help advance high standards for animal ethics and care in Canadian science by providing your comments on the CCAC guidelines on: air quality of laboratory animal facilities by August 31, 2016.

August 2, 2016

Does age matter? Working group publish findings to improve reproducibility

A recent paper published in Laboratory Animals summarises the findings of an NC3Rs expert working group investigating the consideration of rodent age in studies.

The paper reviews the factors that affect the decision on the age of the animals selected and how age can impact scientific outcomes.

July 18, 2016

SynDaver Labs launches synthetic canine model

The synthetic canine model is an anatomically accurate model that veterinary students can practice surgeries on. The canine model mimics functioning body systems, and has the capability to simulate customized diseases, illnesses and medical complications.

More information can be found on the SynDaver website.

July 11, 2016

Norecopa’s new website

Norecopa is Norway's National Consensus Platform for the advancement of "the 3 Rs" (Replacement, Reduction, Refinement) in connection with animal experiments.

Norecopa's new website includes all the content of the website of the Laboratory Animal Unit at the Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, four databases NORINA, TextBase, 3R Guide and Classic AVs, and all the content of Norecopa's old website (norecopa.no) as well as a brand-new intelligent search engine built specifically for the task of performing one search simultaneously in all these resources.

June 29, 2016

ICCVAM Advisory Committee to discuss developing a U.S. National 3Rs strategy

The Scientific Advisory Committee on Alternative Toxicological Methods (SACATM) will meet September 27-28, 2016, at NIEHS in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. The focus of this year’s SACATM meeting will be to discuss and develop recommendations for implementing a national strategy for replacing, reducing, and refining animal use (3Rs) for regulatory testing.

The SACATM meeting is free and open to the public, and can be attended in person or viewed via webcast. An agenda, other materials, and links to registration for the upcoming meeting will be posted as they are available on the SACATM Upcoming Meetings webpage.

June 20, 2016

CAAT offering training in Tox21 technology

The Johns Hopkins University Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT) is offering courses on Tox21 and evidence-based toxicology in The Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH) Track in Toxicity Testing and Human Health Risk Assessment of Environmental Agents. MSPH is a professional degree program that provides individuals with the knowledge and tools needed to be at the forefront of the transition in human health risk assessment.

Click here for complete details, including funding details, part-time options, and admissions and degree requirements. There is still time to apply for fall 2016 admission.

June 13, 2016

Welfare of wild animals in research

Following a successful first event held in 2015, the RSPCA and the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) are jointly convening a second one-day meeting on the welfare of wild animals in research - undertaken either in the wild or in captivity.

The meeting will take place on Thursday, 22 September 2016 in the south-east of England. The program will include presentations and discussion relating to reducing the impact of procedures in the field such as capture, trapping and tagging, and refining housing and care in captivity. It will also cover aspects of regulation and ethical review. You can register for this meeting by completing an online form.

June 1, 2016

Only 10 days left to register to our National Workshop!

CCAC National Workshop 2016

This full-day workshop is the perfect forum to explore new ideas, exchange best practices and connect with individuals from across Canada who are involved in animal ethics and care in science.

We look forward to connecting with you in Toronto!

May 30, 2016
Review the draft

Help set high standards for laboratory air quality

Help advance high standards for animal ethics and care in Canadian science by providing your comments on CCAC guidelines on: air quality of laboratory animal facilities by August 31, 2016.

May 24, 2016

Help with reporting animal-based research

Missing important details from publications can mean that results from animal-based studies cannot be replicated, and consequently more animals may be required to repeat the work. A new tool from Penelope assists researchers to report according to the most relevant checklist from the EQUATOR library, and hence assists implement the principle of Reduction.

May 16, 2016

Help with Experimental Design

Want to know the right number of animals to request for your particular study?

Check out the Experimental Design Assistant, a free resource from the NC3Rs to support researchers in the planning of animal experiments - ensuring robust study design and reliable and reproducible findings.

May 14, 2016

Register now for the CCAC National Workshop 2016!

CCAC National Workshop 2016

This full-day workshop is the perfect forum to explore new ideas, exchange best practices and connect with individuals from across Canada who are involved in animal ethics and care in science. Don’t miss out!

Register now!

May 8, 2016

RSPCA focus on severe suffering

The RSPCA has recently updated their severe suffering website with two new 'Road Map' resource packs setting out practical steps to help establishments reduce and avoid 'severe' suffering.

Any comments or feedback are welcomed.

May 2, 2016

2017 Science-based Refinement Awards

Attention veterinarians, lab technicians, animal technicians, and all who work with laboratory animals: The Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT) now is accepting proposals for the 2017 Science-based Refinement Awards.

Deadline is November 18, 2016.

April 25, 2016

ARDF funding

The Alternatives Research and Development Foundation (ARDF) will award up to $40,000 to individual projects with the potential to significantly replace or reduce laboratory animals in research. This year, preference will be given to projects that use pathway-based approaches as exemplified by the 2007 National Academy of Sciences report, Toxicity Testing in the Twenty-first Century: A Vision and a Strategy. Applications must be received by Monday, May 2.

Guidelines and application form available here.

April 18, 2016

Ten practical realities for institutional animal care and use committees when evaluating protocols dealing with fish in the field.

This paper by Cooke et al. (2016) in Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries (26(1):123-133) highlights issues where there is a need for greater collaboration between IACUC members (including veterinary professionals) and field researchers which would provide more reasoned, rational and useful guidance to improve or maintain the welfare status of fishes used in field research while enabling researchers to pursue fundamental and applied questions related to the biology of fish in the field.

April 4, 2016

Guidelines to minimize disturbance of colonial-breeding waterbirds during research activities

The latest edition of Picoides, the newsletter for the Society of Canadian Ornithologists, provides guidance to minimize disturbance of colonial-breeding waterbirds during research activities (pg 10-12). Seabirds and waterbirds are particularly vulnerable to the effects of human disturbance. These guidelines are designed to increase awareness of the sensitivities of Canada’s seabird and waterbird colonies to disturbance, provide information on the applicable legal protection, and provide guidance on appropriate behaviour to follow when near breeding colonies of seabirds and waterbirds in order to avoid and minimize disturbance.

See also the section on birds in the Three Rs Microsite.

March 23, 2016

Join us for the CCAC National Workshop 2016!

CCAC National Workshop 2016
Register now!

We invite you to attend the CCAC National Workshop in Toronto on Saturday, June 11, 2016, where people from across Canada will come together to explore best practices and new ideas surrounding animal ethics and care in science.

With a fantastic program filled with engaging sessions and expert speakers, this year’s workshop will be Building on an Inclusive Culture of Animal Care in Science. Don’t forget to take advantage of our early-bird rate by registering before midnight, May 13, 2016 EDT.

March 21, 2016

In vitro fish gill assay

A team at King’s College London, are pioneering an in vitro freshwater gill system in the lab. This technique, published in Nature Protocols, provides a more humane way to study the impacts of environmental hazards on freshwater fish, whilst reducing the number of fish needed. The technique was developed as part of an NC3Rs project grant award to Professor Christer Hogstrand and others, along with a CASE studentship to Dr Nic Bury from the UK Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC).

March 14, 2016

Graduate Fellowships in Alternatives Research

The International Foundation for Ethical Research (IFER) is accepting pre-proposal applications for its Graduate Student Fellowships for Alternatives to the Use of Animals in Science. These fellowships are awarded to students enrolled in master’s or Ph.D. programs in life or social sciences or humanities whose programs of study show potential to replace the use of animals in science. Pre-proposal applications are due April 29. Submission of full proposals is by invitation only.

March 7, 2016

A new e-learning resource focusing on the assessment of laboratory animal welfare, particularly genetically altered neonates has been created by Professor Paul Flecknell and his team at Newcastle University. With funding from the NC3Rs this tool will help researchers and animal care staff to identify signs of good and poor welfare in research animals.

February 29, 2016

The Humane Endpoints website is now available in four languages with the Spanish translation recently released. The website aims to help recognize humane endpoints in laboratory animals.

This resource and other information on human endpoints is available on the CCAC Three Rs Microsite.

February 22, 2016

The 3Rs in the quality control of human vaccines: EURL ECVAM releases summary of ongoing projects.

Read the report.

February 16, 2016

Focus on severe suffering

An international conference hosted by the RSPCA on June 16-17, 2016 in Brussels, Belgium.

Due to sponsorship generously donated to the RSPCA, there will be NO delegate fee charged for attending. However, places are limited and those with direct involvement in the regulation, care and use of animals will be prioritized.

This event is scheduled to directly follow the conclusion of FELASA Congress 2016.

Click here to register.

February 8, 2016

Online Laboratory Animal Science Masters Program

The Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, VA, has started an Online Laboratory Animal Science (LAS) Master’s Program and will graduate its first class in May 2016. This program is designed to assist students pursuing their careers in animal science including facility management, research and veterinary medicine.

Applications submitted by March 1, 2016 will be considered for early admission to upcoming Class of 2018.
Click here to apply.

February 1, 2016

Registration open for symposium on Social Housing of Laboratory Animals

Co-hosted by USDA, OLAW, UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, Division of Veterinary Resources NIH, and the Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing at UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine Valley Hall Davis, California on March 17-18, 2016.

Registration includes an optional Primate facility tour on March 16th. Attendee registration closes February 29, 2016.

For further information, please contact Jamie DeRita.

January 31, 2016

Celebrating International Laboratory Animal Technician Week!

Laboratory Animal Technician

January 31 - February 6, 2016 is International Laboratory Animal Technician Week. This annual event recognizes laboratory animal technicians for their essential contributions to animal-based science throughout the world.

The CCAC salutes all laboratory animal technicians and the key role they play in ensuring high standards of animal ethics and care in Canadian science every day.

January 28, 2016

Policy revisions streamline the CCAC Certification Process


The CCAC policy statement on: the certification of animal ethics and care programs introduces important innovations to the Assessment and Certification program.

The policy, which supersedes the 2010 CCAC policy statement on: the certification of animal care and use programs, was revised in an effort to deliver the most effective certification program possible to CCAC’s program participants.

January 27, 2016

Call for Abstracts for the Pan-American Conference for Alternative Methods

Pan-American Conference for Alternative Methods

The deadline to submit abstracts for this first-of-its-kind conference is January 31, 2016.

Visit their website to submit your abstract and to learn more about this unique conference, which is bringing together experts and stakeholders from across the Americas to explore alternatives.

January 25, 2016

Pan-American Conference on Alternative Methods

Hosted by the Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing at Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health, Baltimore on April 12-14, 2016. Those interested in attending are encouraged to register early, as attendance will be limited to 300 participants.

Abstracts are being accepted for oral and poster presentations; new deadline is January 31, 2016.

For more information and to register, email Jamie DeRita.

January 18, 2016

Comfortable Quarters -- Obtain a free copy of Animal Welfare Institute’s Guide for laboratory animal care personnel on the humane housing and handling of individual animal species in research facilities; edited by Cathy Liss, Kenneth Litwak, Dave Tilford & Viktor Reinhardt; 2015; 10th edition; 239 pages.

January 14, 2016

Help Us Build the Perfect E-Portal for Your Needs


As announced in our 2015-2020 strategic plan, the CCAC is developing an e-portal with unique tools and resources for institutions participating in its programs.


Please take a moment before January 31, 2016 to fill out a quick survey.

Your feedback that will help us build the best possible platform for your needs.

January 11, 2016

Winners of the 2015 Dorothy Hegarty Award (for the best publication in the journal ATLA) are from Montréal.

Read the winning paper.
Guo T., Lok K-Y., Yu C. & Li Z. (2014) Lung fibrosis: Drug screening and disease marker identification with lung slice culture model and subtracted cDNA library ATLA 42: 235-243.