Cover of Guidelines for the Humane Transportation of Research Animals

Guidelines for the Humane Transportation of Research Animals


Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); .
ISBN-10: 0-309-10110-7
Copyright © 2006, National Academy of Sciences.


Over the last 10 years, the biomedical research enterprise has undergone tremendous growth. The amount of federal funding for biomedical research has more than doubled since 1995, and the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and contract research sectors have all seen double-digit growth (PhRMA, 2005). That growth has been accompanied by parallel increases in research infrastructure, including an increase in the numbers of animals used in biomedical research. The humane transportation of research animals has been a priority, but there are concerns that the rapid increase in the numbers of animals transported, the increasing use of genetically modified animals that may have medical considerations, the complexity of permitting and inspection of research animals, and the dwindling availability of transportation services are adversely affecting the quality and ease of transportation in the United States.

Because of those concerns, the National Center for Infectious Diseases of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health asked the Institute for Laboratory Animal Research of the National Research Council to convene a committee to address problems associated with the transportation of research animals. The detailed charge to the committee is as follows: A committee will be formed to address current problems encountered in the transportation of research animals and make recommendations to rectify these problems to the benefit of the research community and the animals themselves. The committee will focus on all species used in biomedical research and all possible modes of transportation. Specifically, they will address: animal welfare concerns during transportation; availability of quality transportation services for animals, or lack thereof; overlaps or gaps in regulatory oversight; permitting issues; transportation of tissues/specimens; regulatory burden reduction; and potential biosecurity concerns.