Protocol Oversight at UW-Madison
UW-Madison has four Institutional Animal Care and Use Committees (IACUCs), whose oversight is determined by animal housing location. UW-Madison's animal program has over 50 discrete animal facilities.PIs submit new and renewal protocols via ARROW (Application Review for Research Oversight at Wisconsin). Getting Started provides an overview for using ARROW.
- All animal care and use protocols, regardless of IACUC oversight, are submitted through and administered by the Research Animal Resources and Compliance IACUC office.
- The UW-Madison animal care and use protocol form is the same, regardless of department, school, college, or IACUC oversight.
- Veterinary policies and policies adopted by the All Campus Animal Planning and Advisory Committee apply to all PIs and units, regardless of department, school, college, or IACUC oversight.
- Incoming investigators may complete and submit a UW-Madison animal protocol prior to arriving on campus.
- UW-Madison allows multiple grants to be listed on a single animal use protocol. Similarly, a single grant can be listed on multiple protocols.
- Specific information regarding animal facility operations such as space requirements/availability, animal shipping and quarantine, and per diem rates are facility-specific and are not handled centrally by RARC. Investigators should contact their hiring department, school or college, or work with the research animal veterinary staff on facility-specific questions.
- UW-Madison's animal program policy requires that everyone named as staff on an animal protocol -- regardless of experience -- must complete basic training on animal use rules and regulations and training in occupational safety before IACUC approval of a protocol is released. Much of the training is available online, accessible with a UW-issued NetID. Animal protocols may be submitted for IACUC review before training requirements have been fulfilled.
- Biosafety protocols are administered outside RARC at the UW Office of Biological Safety.
- Radiation approval and chemical hygiene plan review are also handled outside of RARC at the Division of Facilities Planning & Management.
Typical Protocol Review Process
- A protocol application is prepared by an investigator and submitted to RARC.
- RARC staff assigns the protocol to the appropriate IACUC for review based on where the animals are housed.
- The IACUC reviews the protocol. The committee can approve the protocol outright, require modifications in response to IACUC review questions, or defer review to a future meeting after substantial revision is made by the investigator.
- RARC staff communicates the IACUC’s decision to the investigator, along with instructions on how to respond (if a response is needed) or with verification of approval.
- Once the protocol is approved, work with animals may begin.
- Investigators must amend the protocol and obtain IACUC approval before changing any of the conditions described in the protocol, including the number of animals that can be used, where the animals live, who is on staff, procedures, drugs, and other aspects of the work covered by the protocol.
- Once every year, investigators must complete a brief annual review form (the annual update) to maintain the active status of their protocol.
- An animal protocol is a contractual agreement between a principal investigator and the IACUC. IACUCs will investigate protocol violations and impose disciplinary action when appropriate.