What's New @ ILAR e-Newsletter -- Spring 2015

ILAR Roundtable on Science and Welfare in Laboratory Animal Use - two workshops held in 2014, third workshop scheduled for 2015

The ILAR Roundtable held our first workshop, Reproducibility Issues in Research with Animals and Animal Models in Washington, DC on June 4-5. The inaugural workshop was well attended by leaders in academia, industry, and the non-profit arena who are concerned with the welfare and use of laboratory animals in scientific research. The presentations of all speakers, as well as a video and audio recording of the event, are located here:  http://nas-sites.org/ilar-roundtable/roundtable-activities/reproducibility/webcast/


Our second workshop, on Transportation of Laboratory Animals, was also well-attended and provided an engaging, insightful discussion on the issues surrounding the national and international transportation of laboratory animals. The presentations of all speakers, sa well as a video and audio recording of the event, are located here:  http://nas-sites.org/ilar-roundtable/webcast-video-archive-transportation-2/


Please save the date for our third workshop on Design, Implementation, Monitoring and Sharing of Performance Standards, which will take place on April 20-21, 2015 in Washington DC. Please visit http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/1941206/ILAR-Roundtable-Performance-Standards-Workshop to register to attend the event in person or via webcast.


Recent Issues of the ILAR Journal

Volume 55, Issue 3

Experimental Design and Statistics

Scientific Editors: Michael Festing and Timo Nevalainen


Laboratory animal scientists have emphasized the importance of laboratory animal welfare using the "3Rs" (replacement, refinement, and reduction) and have eliminated many infectious diseases in laboratory mice and rats. However, there is cause for concern. Many experiments appear to be poorly designed and inadequately analyzed and reportd. As a result, some are found to be unrepeatable, leading to a waste of animals and scientific resources. The new techniques of systematic reviews and meta-analyses are hampered by poorly written papers. The importance of randomization and blinding does not always seem to be understood, and it seems that many scientists have inadequate training in experimental design and statistics. The review articles presented in this journal address some of these issues. It is hoped that they provide a wake-up call to all scientists, universities, research institutes, and funding organizations to ensure that all scientists using laboratory animals are fully trained both in the biology and use of animals in well-designed and properly reported experiments. 


  • The Design and Statistical Analysis of Animal Experiments: Introduction to this Issue
  • Refinement of Experimental Design and Conduct in Laboratory Animal Research
  • Animal Husbandry and Experimental Design
  • Evidence Should Trump Intuition by Preferring Inbred Strains to Outbred Stocks in Preclinical Research
  • Critical Appraisal of Studies Using Laboratory Animal Models
  • Meta-Analyses of Animal Studies: An Introduction of a Valuable Instrument to Further Improve Healthcare
  • The Usefulness of Systematic Reviews of Animal Experiments for the Design of Preclinical and Clinical Studies
  • The Significance of Meaning: Why Do Over 90% of Behavioral Neuroscience Results Fail to Translate to Humans, and What Can We Do To Fix It?
  • Teaching Experimental Design
  • Randomized Block Experimental Designs Can Increase the Power and Reproducibility of Laboratory Animal Experiments
  • The Place of Experimental Design and Statistics in the 3Rs
  • Making the Most of Clustered Data in Laboratory Animal Research Using Multi-Level Models


Volume 55, Issue 2

Behavioral Assessment in Animal Models:  Relevance for Human Psychopathology

Scientific Editors: Melinda A. Novak and Jerrold S. Meyer


The papers in this issue of the ILAR Journal discuss several animal models of neuropsychiatric disorders and the methods that can be employed to study these disorders. This topic is both timely and important given the significant impact of mental helath disorders on human well-being. In a survey conducted by the World Health Organization of 14 countries (JAMA, 2004) mental health disorders were highly prevalent in both less developed and developed countries. This issue includes papers that both present specific animal models of mental health disorders and describe and evaluate behavioral, physiological, and genetic/epigenetic methodologies used in modeling such disorders. 



  • Social Defeat as an Animal Model for Depression
  • Maintaining the Clinical Relevance of Animal Models in Translational Studies of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Animal Models of Fear Relapse
  • Nonhuman Primate Moels of Depression: Effects of Early Experience and Stress
  • Use of the Cross-Translational Model to Study Self-Injurious Behavior in Human and Nonhuman Primates
  • Sterotypic Behavior in Nonhuman Primates as a Model for the Human Condition
  • The Ups and Downs of Modelling Mood Disorders in Rodents
  • Assessing Spatial Learning and Memory in Rodents
  • Assessing Anxiety in Nonhuman Primates
  • Models of Stress in Nonhuman Primates and Their Relevance for Human Psychopathology and Endocrine Dysfunction
  • Nonhuman Primate Models of Neuropsychiatric Disorders: Influences of Early Rearing, Genetics, and Epigenetics


Volume 55, Issue 1

Naturally Occurring Diseases in Animals:  Contributions to Translational Medicine

Scientific Editor: Michael D. Lairmore and Chand Khanna


This issue of the ILAR Journal brings together a number of reviews that show how naturally occurring or spontaneous diseases of animals provide scientific researchers with means to gain important and fundamental knowledge of human disease for translational medicine. These articles are written in the context of lessons learned about disease processes and translating this knowledge to the treatment of human disease. Among these articles are well-documented examples of animal diseases with causes ranging from genetic to infectious. Importantly, these natural animal models provide insight into the pathogenesis of human maladies and offer unique perspectives on how this information can be applied to intervention strategies in people. 



  • Naturally Occurring Diseases in Animals: Contributions to Translational Medicine
  • Lamb Model of Respiratory Syncytial Virus-Associated Lung Disease: Insights to Pathogenesis and Novel Treatments
  • Naturally Occurring Cancers in Dogs: Insights for Translational Genetics and Medicine
  • Bartonellosis: One Health Perspectives for an Emerging Infectious Disease
  • Domestic Dogs and Cancer Research: A Breed-Based Genomics Approach
  • Canine Osteosarcoma: A Naturally Occurring Disease to Inform Pediatric Oncology
  • Achilles Tendon Injuries in Elite Athletes: Lessons in Pathophysiology from Their Equine Counterparts
  • Uninary Bladder Cancer in Dogs, a Naturally Occurring Model for Cancer Biology and Drug Development
  • Pharmacologic Management of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy: Target Identification and Preclinical Trials
  • Naturally Occurring Spinal Hyperostosis in Dogs as a Model for Human Spinal Disorders
  • Cancer and Comparative Imaging
  • Developing T Cell Cancer Immunotherapy in the Dog with Lymphoma
  • Canine Epilepsy:  An Underutilized Model
  • Naturally Occurring Animal Models of Human Hepatitis E Virus Infection
  • Issues Related to Institutional Animal Care and Use Committees and Clinical Trials Using Privately Owned Animals 


Our next issue, tentatively scheduled to release in November, will be on Experimental Design and Statistics in Laboratory Animal Research.

Future Issue Topics*

Vol 56(1): The Microbiome: Modeling for Disease and Health

Vol 56(2): One Health: Livestock Models in Translational Science

Vol 56(3): Wildlife Diseases as Models for Research

* Topics and titles are subject to change



Subscription and Ordering Information


The ILAR Journal is now being published by the Oxford University Press. New subscriptions, renewals, and single issues and articles from past issues are all available at the Oxford University Press website.



Recently Published

Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals: Eighth Edition (2011)

This seventh update to the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals integrates recently published data, scientific principles, and expert opinion to recommend practices for the humane care and use of animals in research, testing, and teaching. The Guide is an internationally accepted primary reference on animal care for the scientific community. Previous editions have served as the basis for accreditation of institutions worldwide by the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care International. Also, use of previous editions has been required for researchers supported by the National Institutes of Health who adhere to the Public Health Service policy. Additions to this eighth edition of the Guide include expanded coverage of the ethics of laboratory animal use; components of effective Animal Care and Use Programs; new guidelines for the housing, environment, and enrichment of terrestrial and aquatic animals; updated information on veterinary and clinical care, and discussion of animal biosecurity.


Animal Research in a Global Environment (2011)

To identify and promote better understanding of the challenges of conducting animal research across country boundaries, the Institute for Laboratory Animal Research (ILAR) convened a workshop on Animal Research in a Global Environment: Meeting the Challenges, drawing on the expertise and perspectives of 200 participants from 17 countries. The public workshop featured invited presentations and discussions that focused on new information published since the last workshop in 2003, in part to inform the continuing development of guidelines (including an update of the 1996 Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals).



Animal Models for Assessing Countermeasures to Bioterrorism Agents (2011)

In response to a request by the Department of Defense, this report addresses the challenges stemming from developing and testing medical countermeasures in animal models. The report makes the principal point that a comprehensive strategy to improve data gathering and data sharing from animal models (or their alternatives) would significantly increase the efficiency and productivity of research into countermeasures while improving the humane use of laboratory animals in accordance with the principles of the Three Rs.


Guidance for the Description of Animal Research in Scientific Publications (2011)

This a short report aimed at editors of Journals that publish animal studies. The report outlines the information that should be included in scientific papers regarding such studies to ensure that the studies can be replicated. Necessary information includes conditions of housing and husbandry, genetic nomenclature, microbial status, detailed experimental manipulations, and handling and use of pharmaceuticals.


International Animal Research Regulations: Impact on Neuroscience Research (2012)

Animals are widely use in neuroscience research to explore biological mechanisms of nervous system function, to identify the genetic basis of disease states, and to provide models of human disorders and diseases for the development of new treatments. To ensure the humane care and use of animals, numerous laws, policies, and regulations are in place governing the use of animals in research, and certain animal regulations have implications specific to neuroscience research. This report summarizes the workshop “U.S. and European Animal Research Regulations” convened by the Institute of Medicine Forum on Neuroscience and Nervous System Disorders, in collaboration with the National Research Council Committee on Science, Technology, and Law, and the Institute for Laboratory Animal Research, held in the UK on July 26-27, 2011.


Did you know that ILAR project information is available online?

The National Academies announces meetings that are open to the public via the Current Projects System (CPS) at least 10 days before the event.

To learn more, visit the Current Projects System FAQ.



The International Council for Laboratory Animal Science (ICLAS) recently released guidelines for researchers, as well as editors and reviewers of scientific journals, regarding the ethics of using animal models in research. 


You can access both sets of guidelines at the ICLAS website.




AAALAC Conference Calendar

AALAS Meetings and Events Calendar

AVMA Calendar

Charles River Courses and Seminars (U.S.)

IAT Calendar

Jackson Laboratory Courses, Meetings, and Workshops Calendar

OLAW IACUC Staff Outreach Seminar Schedule

University of Utrecht