Guidelines for Documenting Scientific Justification for Exceeding Cage Densities
The Guide defines the maximum number of rodents allowed in a given cage space and is the regulatory source for the Guidelines on Mouse and Rat Breeding and Housing Management. This document is intended to provide guidelines for investigators who breed mice and would like to attain IACUC approval to house more than two adults and one litter, i.e. an exception to The Guide.
The below steps must be taken to document problem breeding when housed within the Guideline requirements. If standard steps to optimize breeding efficiency do not improve problem breeding parameters, breeding records can be submitted to provide scientific justification for a protocol amendment requesting overcrowded housing to the IACUC. If the IACUC approves the exception to overcrowd, performance standards must be fulfilled to demonstrate increased breeding performance in overcrowded cages, as well as ensure environmental conditions remain within Guide requirements.
If you have questions or comments about this document, contact ULAM Veterinary Staff (email ULAMfirstname.lastname@example.org or call 734-936-1696).
The Animal Care and Use Office (email email@example.com or call 734-763-8028) can answer IACUC specific questions regarding committee review of scientific justification to support Guide exceptions.
The ULAM Training Core (email ULAMfirstname.lastname@example.org or call 734-763-8039) can be contacted to provide training in techniques at no charge.