Laboratory Animal Medicine

Laboratory Animal Medicine (Third Edition)

American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine
2015, Pages 1543-1597
Laboratory Animal Medicine

Chapter 36 - Design and Management of Research Facilities

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Reliable research results depend on controlling as many variables as possible. One of the many ways the laboratory animal specialist contributes to research control of animal-related variables is through design of the animal housing facility. Control of genetic variables is primarily a matter of biology, but control of other variables is dependent to a significant degree on the design and management of the research animal facility (Hessler, 1999). Biosecurity (defined as all measures taken to detect, prevent, contain, and eradicate adventitious infections) is also critical, as infectious agents are well recognized to perturb the animal’s physiology and biologic responses, potentially affecting research results (reviewed in Chapter 29). Environmental variables, including genetic, microbial, chemical, and physical, are illustrated in Fig. 36.1. This chapter considers the salient design features of contemporary research animal facilities that effectively control environmental variables and allow for the maintenance of high-quality animal care and use standards while minimizing operational costs. The chapter also includes an overview of macro- and microenvironmental conditions and monitoring, operational considerations, housing systems, select equipment employed, and materials routinely used in animal care facilities.

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