Institutional Policy for Oversight of Animal Use in Research and Teaching

The University of Massachusetts Amherst recognizes that the privilege of using animals in research is subject to three Congressional Acts: the Health Research Extension Act  (Public Law 99-158) and Public Health Service (PHS) Policy, the Food Security Act (Public Law 99-198), and the Animal Welfare Act  (AWA) [7 U.S.C. 2131-2156].  Animal use policy at the University of Massachusetts Amherst (the University) applies each set of regulations equally to all vertebrate animal used for research and teaching.

The University has an NIH Assurance of Compliance with PHS Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals on file with OLAW/NIH.  This Assurance commits the University to comply with PHS Policy and documents University procedures to ensure compliance.  In accordance with its Assurance the University has committed to:

  • Comply with all applicable provisions of the Animal Welfare Act and other Federal statutes and regulations relating to animals.
  • Be guided by the “U.S. Government Principles for the Utilization and Care of Vertebrate Animals Used in Testing, Research, and Training.”
  •  Acknowledge and accept responsibility for the care and use of animals involved in activities covered by the Assurance. 
  • Make a reasonable effort to ensure that all individuals involved in the care and use of laboratory animals understand their individual and collective responsibilities for compliance with the Assurance as well as all other applicable laws and regulations pertaining to animal care and use.
  • Establish and maintain a program for activities involving animals in accordance with the ILAR Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals  (the Guide)

The University’s Animal Care facilities are built and operated in compliance with the Guide and recommendations developed by the Federation of Animal Science Societies.

The IACUC also follows guidelines published by the appropriate societies for reviewing protocols which involve field research.