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  1. Do I need to submit my project for NPS IACUC review? If your project involves the use of vertebrate animals in Research, Teaching, and/or Exhibition, then your project requires review by the NPS IACUC.
  2. I'm not exactly sure whether my project requires review. What should I do? If you are unsure whether or not your project requires review, you may submit a detailed abstract or description of your project outlining its goals/aims, animal use protocols and procedures, and expectations. The Committee will review your abstract/description and determine whether or not it requires review.
  3. If another IACUC other than the NPS IACUC has reviewed and approved my project, what should I do?Submit a copy of the approving IACUC's approval document, and a complete and detailed Study Plan outlining your animal use project in exact detail; i.e. the same plan reviewed by the approving IACUC.
  4. I need to submit my project for NPS IACUC review. Which forms do I need to submit, where can I find them, and how do I submit them? If your project involves research and/or teaching; submit the NPS IACUC GS form. If your project involves exhibition; submit the NPS IACUC E form. You may find any and all forms on the Project Review page. Forms may be submitted electronically or by regular mail.
  5. What if my project requires NPS IACUC review, but is an on-going project that has been in place for some time? A full NPS IACUC review is required every three years. So, if your on-going project has not received IACUC review, or has not received IACUC review in more than three years, then it should be submitted as a new project. However, the submission should include a description of the project to date, and should state that no IACUC review was given.
  6. How soon should I hear back from the NPS IACUC concerning my project submission? The NPS IACUC will contact you by email or telephone immediately upon to receipt of your submission to verify that it was received for review.
  7. How long will it take to review my project? A complete review of your project should take no longer than thirty days; however, not all projects will require this amount of time for review. Issues contributing to the length of time required to adequately review a given project may include 1. Project complexity, 2. The use of novel techniques or procedures, 3. The degree of invasive, harmful, or materially behavior altering procedures, and/or 4. The scale and or size of the project. You will be notified as soon as possible concerning the Committee's decision.
  8. What if I disagree with the decision of the Committee? The AWAR states in § 2.31, d, 4: "The IACUC shall notify principal investigators and the research facility in writing of its decision to approve or withhold approval of those activities related to the care and use of animals, or of modifications required to secure IACUC approval. If the IACUC decides to withhold approval of an activity, it shall include in its written notification a statement of the reasons for its decision and give the principal investigator an opportunity to respond in person or in writing. The IACUC may reconsider its decision, with documentation in Committee minutes, in light of the information provided by the principal investigator". As stated above, if your project has been rejected by the NPS IACUC, you may respond in person or in writing in an attempt to have the Committee reconsider its decision. However, if the Committee does not change or reverse its decision, then no further appeal exists and the Committee's decision becomes final.
  9. How often do I need to have my project reviewed?Each project that has undergone NPS IACUC review must be submitted for review on an annual basis for the first two years following its first approval. At the end of a project's third year, it must be resubmitted de novo for a full NPS IACUC review if it is to continue. Upon approval of the resubmitted project, the annual renewal process begins again until year six, etc.
  10. When can I start my project?You may begin your project immediately following notification of NPS IACUC approval. Regarding reviews and resubmissions, your project need not have stopped for these purposes, and may continue uninterrupted during these processes unless the NPS IACUC withholds approval.
  11. What is IRAC? IRAC is an acronym that stands for the Interagency Research Animal Committee. The IRAC was created in 1984, and is comprised of federal agencies that work with animals in biomedical research and testing. They have nine major principles that work in concert with the AWA, and extend the spirit of the AWA to all vertebrates. The NPS IACUC is a voluntary member of the IRAC, and has incorporated the nine IRAC principles as an inherent part of the NPS IACUC mandate.

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Last Updated: May 21, 2012