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Oct 2017
Oct 2017


Austin Convention Center 500 East Cesar Chavez Street Austin , Texas 78701
Tel: (512) 404-4000
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68th AALAS National Meeting - American Association For Laboratory Animal Science






Event Overview:

Each fall since 1950, the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science has held its annual National Meeting. During the five days of the meeting, members and nonmembers come together to enjoy the workshops, lectures, poster sessions, and exhibits. The program is designed to have topics relevant to the entire membership. Exhibitors have an opportunity to interact with AALAS members from the academic community, research institutions, government organizations, and commercial companies. The AALAS National Meeting is the largest gathering in the world of professionals concerned with the production, care, and use of laboratory animals. 

The meeting will be held at the Austin Convention Center located at 500 E. Cesar Chavez Street, Austin, TX 78701, U.S.

AALAS is working with the Austin Visitors Bureau to secure additional hotel rooms, but several events coincide with our National Meeting. Any available rooms are automatically added to our block. Please check the housing site often. Attendees may also choose to use hotel points, book directly with a hotel, or select airline/hotel combination packages.

Exhibitor Information:

The AALAS National Meeting is the largest gathering in the world of professionals concerned with the production, care, and use of laboratory animals. As an exhibitor, you have an opportunity to interact with more than 4,500 AALAS attendees from the academic community, research institutions, government organizations, and commercial companies.

About AALAS:

The American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) is a membership association of professionals employed around the world in academia, government, and private industry who are dedicated to the humane care and treatment of laboratory animals, as well as the quality research that leads to scientific gains that benefit people and animals. AALAS provides educational materials to laboratory animal care professionals and researchers, administers certification programs for laboratory animal technicians and managers, publishes scholarly journals, supports laboratory animal science research, and serves as the premier forum for the exchange of information and expertise in the care and use of laboratory animals.


Oct 15   


Technical Trade Presentations Track 1: Husbandry/Facility Management

Tank Graffiti versus Labels
1:00 PM - 1:20 PM/Room: 16A
Speaker: Robby Davis
Moderator: Deborah A Benner

In Zebrafish research, a common practice is self-created marking of tanks with critical data. But these randomized methods provide a poor communication mechanism. We will explore an alternative approach that enables accurate reproducibility of applied protocols, experiments, or generational breeding/reproduction, yielding statistically validated results by employing concise recorded labeling. Participants will learn an innovative form of accurate communications methods drawn from resident databases producing legible tank labeling that can evolve as subjects age and protocols progress, requiring the ongoing relabeling of tanks as they are relocated around the laboratory. This presentation is relevant to all zebrafish professionals who participate or oversee breeding services, strain management, or work with lab/facility management, as well as grant writers, health and safety managers, IACUC committee members, veterinarians, principle investigators, researchers, and post docs.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by DanioData by Fulcrum.

Keep It Clean with Polymer Flooring
1:20 PM - 1:40 PM/Room: 16A
Speaker: Gordon Yee
Moderator: Deborah A Benner

Your facility is dirty. Your animals are clean, and you want them to stay that way. How? Keep your facility clean, and stop dirt and contamination before it has a chance to get in. It is time to take a cue from other clean industries that rely on polymer flooring technologies to maintain their clean environments. These industries include nanotechnology optics, semiconductor, GLP manufacturing, aerospace, telecom, and many other areas where maintaining a clean environment is paramount to having a reliable product. TechTrak Flooring offers the next generation of particulate capture by providing a completely passive barrier that strips particulate from feet and wheels. It can work in conjunction with or separately from current PPE protocols, and will not only help to keep problematic pathogens and contaminants out of your facility; it will simply help to keep things clean. This is not your father’s sticky mat.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Ancare.

Animal Watering Myths Exposed
1:40 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 16A
Speaker: Arnie Markwald
Moderator: Mike R Evans

This will be a lighthearted but poignant look at animal watering myths. How many times have you heard something and accepted it as true? The old axiom of saying something enough times makes it true can create yths. This presentation will take a look at myths surrounding animal drinking water, bottles/bags, flushing systems, recirculating systems, reverse osmosis, green practices, carbon footprints, piping materials, chemical treatment, and many more. Myth examples include “chlorine is bad”, “recirculating systems are green," and “flushing systems waste water." Join us as we explore the world of animal watering and expose common myths surrounding its use so that attendees can make an informed decision when it comes to purchasing an animal watering system.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Edstrom Industries LLC.

Officialdom and High-Level Disinfection 
2:00 PM - 2:20 PM/Room: 16A
Speaker: Kathy Kane
Moderator: Deborah A Benner

The EPA has a very specific definition for disinfection, essentially a six log (99.9999%) reduction of specific challenges in less than 10 minutes. Although many marketing materials claim disinfection, many of those products don’t actually meet those standards. Vivarium operations and biosecurity staff are responsible for disinfection efficacy and need to determine the false claims from the real ones. When it comes to personal exposure limits of chemicals used in disinfection, OSHA has more stringent standards for PAA and H202. The challenge is to determine the best systems for fully high-level, no-touch disinfection of entire treated spaces that meet the efficacy definition of disinfection and at the same time meet or exceed the OSHA PEL safety standards. This presentation is appropriate for lab/plant/facility/vivarium operations managers and biosecurity and safety management.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Altapure LLC.

Emergent Technologies Help Improve Research Animal Management
2:20 PM - 2:40 PM/Room: 16A
Speaker: Charles Donnelly
Moderator: Julie Morrison

The NIH invests approximately $12 billion each year in animal model research that is central to both understanding basic biological processes and for developing applications directly related to improving human health. Surveys show that over 90% of research organizations still depend heavily on paper notebooks and spreadsheets, or expensive on-premises solutions for capturing and organizing research information. These solutions are often inefficient, error prone, unsecure, limit data sharing, and do not track sufficient information for experimental reproducibility. New approaches to improve laboratory animal welfare, as well as more capable and cost effective husbandry techniques and data management, are high priorities to the NIH. Efficiency gains can translate directly to cost savings, increased scientific output, and reduced burden on research animal subjects. Emergent technologies such as IoT monitors, machine learning algorithms, and mobile devices integrated with global cloud infrastructure, such as Microsoft Azure and Amazon EC2, are revolutionizing how workflows are conducted in nearly every industry. For about the same cost per year as a few mouse cages, cloud hosted systems can offer comprehensive data and workflow management with real-time data capture, data analysis, instant push notification, and multimedia communication backed by nearly limitless compute capacity and geo-redundant data storage. Researchers no longer need to maintain and own expensive and complex IT infrastructure, they simply subscribe to a research data service with 24/7 global availability. Here we discuss scalable cloud solutions for researchers looking to focus on their research, improve their data management, ease their efforts for regulatory compliance, and reduce their IT maintenance costs.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by RockStep Solutions.

Using Technology to Stamp Out Paper Cage Cards, Printers, and Manual Census in the Vivarium
2:40 PM - 3:00 PM/Room: 16A
Speaker: Rich VanDewater
Moderator: Deborah A Benner

The use of paper cage cards and manual census is ubiquitous in every animal facility. But cards can be misplaced and must be reprinted every time information is added or changed. Printers in each housing room generate disruptive noise, take up valuable space, and use expensive toner cartridges. Or long walks are taken to the printer room to retrieve new cards. Cage cards are also used to take cage census but cages must be hand counted or every single card in the facility must be manually scanned. All these processes are time consuming and inefficient. Participants will learn how the CageTalkers® unique technology is used to replace paper cage cards, eliminate printers, archive cage card information, perform automatic cage census, and track and locate individual cages. The target audience is all lab animal professionals who oversee vivarium management and want to learn about innovative streamlining of record keeping and cage census.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Animal Care Systems, Inc.

Using Data Collection Technology for Cage Census
3:00 PM - 3:20 PM/Room: 16A
Speaker: Daniel Kwoka
Moderator: Neil Amrhein

Animal research facilities throughout the country, whether they are pharmaceutical or university institutions, have an enormous data collection burden on their shoulders. They need absolutely flawless records on the scores of cages that come into and out of the facility. Additionally, cages can be moved throughout a facility on a daily basis. It's like running a hotel for mice. Facilities need a method to track cages easily and accurately. There are several data collection technologies and methods that can be used, but they need to be incorporated properly in order to meet the goals of each unique operation. In this presentation we will compare and contrast the three major technologies being used for cage census (barcode, passive RFID, and active RFID), as well as cover the benefits and tradeoffs of each technology.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Capturity.

How Cloud Connectivity for Laboratory Equipment Can Revolutionize Lab Productivity
3:20 PM - 3:40 PM/Room: 16A
Speaker: Amit Gupta
Moderator: Deborah A Benner

From adjusting thermostats online to starting a car from an app to viewing security camera video on a website, internet connected devices have already revolutionized the consumer market. In the consumer market, internet connected devices are generically referred to as the Internet of Things (IoT). Similar types of technology and connectivity are already being integrated into laboratory equipment. If this trend continues, within five to 10 years, the laboratory could primarily consist of internet-connected or “smart” equipment. This type of smart equipment enables researchers to be more productive by allowing them to remotely perform experiments, run processes, monitor tests, collect data, and more. Traditionally, cloud connectivity has been a challenge for laboratories because most lab equipment use audible alarms, display messages on a screen, or require input on a terminal. Smart equipment solves the proximity issue and embeds itself into a researcher’s natural workflow by interacting via e-mail, SMS, app, and/or website. Smart lab equipment allows researchers to access and collect critical information as it occurs, thereby, empowering the researcher to focus on the science rather than the equipment. Productivity gains are realized by minimizing downtime, reducing waiting time, and allowing researchers to work on multiple pieces of equipment simultaneous and remotely. This presentation will cover the opportunities presented by a new age of smart laboratory equipment and how labs can leverage smart laboratory equipment to realize increased productivity. Additionally, issues regarding data security and data ownership will be discussed.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Consolidated Sterilizer Systems.

Unlocking Novel Insights with the Digital Vivarium
3:40 PM - 4:00 PM/Room: 16A
Speaker: David Hutto
Moderator: Deborah A Benner

The utility of animal models in drug development is limited in part by the measures available to researchers for monitoring animals. In life, measures are often subjective, lack clinical relevance, and can be hard to reproduce. Conventional approaches to collecting in-life measures are labor-intensive and may introduce experimental variability, as they require frequent handling of the animals during the course of the study. This session will examine how the ever-increasing combination of existing monitoring technologies with data science, environmental design, and cloud infrastructure is creating new “digital vivariums” of the future that seek to address the long-standing limitations that have existed in in vivo research.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Vium, Inc.

Technical Trade Presentations Track 2: Novel Techniques/Technologies

The Importance of Establishing a Cryopreservation Program in the Laboratory
1:00 PM - 1:20 PM/Room: 17B
Speaker: Chapell Miller
Moderator: John A Park

Key components of a successful zebrafish facility are trained, committed, and reliable staff; efficiency; predictability; healthy fish; a high level of biosecurity; and a back-up system. All of these factors should be standardized, and a well-working cryopreservation program is a natural component of such standardization. Unfortunately, not all zebrafish facilities have a solid plan for back-up in case of a disaster. Human error, instrument malfunction, power outages, disease outbreaks, and natural disasters are all possible scenarios that demand a solid backup plan. A cryopreservation program is a back-up strategy that will prevent loss of lines in most of these cases. By storing zebrafish lines in the form of cryopreserved sperm samples, preferably at an off-site location, lines can be re-created quickly if needed. In the mean time you can retire lines that are not currently in use and reduce costs and time spent doing husbandry, keeping focus on the research. By increasing available tank space, fish can be stocked at a lower density, thereby reducing health risks. Compared to live lines, cryopreserved sperm samples have a known health and genetic status, with no risk of genetic drift and disease. On average, fish at the age of 12-15 months should be removed from the system to maintain good health. A predictable outcome from the thaw and IVF is important for relying on cryopreservation as a secure back-up. Cryogenetics’ experienced staff can tailor a cryopreservation program for your lab, depending on each facility’s individual needs and set-up. By using the Cryogenetics cryopreservation program the outcome is stable and output will be predictable, thus providing a valuable service option for zebrafish laboratories.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Cryogenetics, Inc.

Breeding Productivity: Using Technology for the Greater Good
1:20 PM - 1:40 PM/Room: 17B
Speaker: Ryan Yanase
Moderator: John A Park

With rapid advancements in consumer technology that reduce human error, improve communication, and minimize lag time across industries, the question arises of how could the animal research community leverage productivity tools. This discussion will pinpoint two productivity tools and how they could work together to change the way animal research is done: automated genotyping and breeding management software. With these two working together in harmony, institution and their facilities worldwide would see tremendous improvement in the efficiency of working with scientifically useful animals, improvement in communication between facility and researcher, and the reduction of human error entry.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Transnetyx.

The Humanizable NCG: CRISPR-Generated Triple Immunodeficient Mouse Model
1:40 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 17B
Speaker: Alice White McVey
Moderator: Gautam Rajpal

The Nod CRISPR Prkdc Il2r gamma mouse, or NCG for short, is a novel triple immunodeficient mouse produced by Charles River. Created by Nanjing University in 2014, the model was in-licensed by Charles River in 2016 and launched to the research community in 2017. With targeted disruptions using CRISPR technology in two critical genes for immune development (Prkdc and Il2rg), the result is a mouse that is T, B, and NK cell deficient. The model is suitable for applications such as oncology, immunology, infectious disease, and diabetes, as well as transplant research. The immunodeficient status of the NCG enables humanization studies including with CD34+ and human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), leading to the development of human immune cell populations. The model can be used to study tumor growth, especially slow growing tumors and patient derived xenografts (PDX). The versatility of the NCG makes it ideal for both basic and clinical research, across academic and commercial institutions.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Charles River.

Surgery and the 3Rs (Reduction, Refinement, and RFID) How RFID Can Increase the 3Rs while Providing Essential Data to the Researcher
2:00 PM - 2:20 PM/Room: 17B
Speaker: Matthew Ruiter
Moderator: Brad Gien

Surgeons and surgical managers are always looking at ways to maintain the 3Rs. Until now, there has not been a way to efficiently record and process the data from surgery such as times, procedures, success, and the surgeon. Currently, the recording of this surgical data is mostly done by hand, on hard-to-read surgical notes. Now, with the use of RFID microchips and software, the collection of surgical data or, “passive data collection," is as simple as an RFID scan of the surgeon, animal, or item. In a sterile environment, passive collection is critical. In addition to surgical metrics for understanding times and outcomes of surgery, it also benefits the researchers. Having the data collection start at the vendor allows for the simple import of the animal’s ID, as well as other crucial data such as DOB, surgery, sex, drugs provided, and order quantity. The surgical vendor-provided data eliminates duplicate data entry at the end user and increase data integrity of every research project.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by UID Identification Solutions.

A Different Way to Approach Waste Anesthetic Gas
2:20 PM - 2:40 PM/Room: 17B
Speaker: Robert (Bob) J Schrock
Moderator: John A Park

Waste anesthetic gas control is still a frequently discussed topic. You may be surprised to know that there have been no official recommendations to OSHA regarding isoflurane exposure specifically. Some European studies have examined the newer anesthetics (isoflurane, sevoflurane, and desflurane) and have made a case for numbers that are higher than those previously recommended for agents like halothane and methoxyflurane. And so, like the debate about =euthanasia, people will still have a difference of opinion on what is considered appropriate. There are many products that have been designed to mitigate the potential exposure to waste gas, but what if funds are limited? We will discuss issues related to waste gas and explore various means to reduce and eliminate the potential exposure. Does it all involve the purchase of new equipment? The answer may not be what you expected.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by VetEquip, Inc.

Rodent Vital Signs Monitoring System
2:40 PM - 3:00 PM/Room: 17B
Speaker: Anilkumar K Reddy
Moderator: John A Park

Surgical and nonsurgical procedures involving anesthetized rodent subjects require continuous monitoring of heart rate, respiration rate, core temperature, and blood oxygenation to keep the state of the animal as normal and stable as possible. This promotes animal welfare by meeting two of the 3Rs (refinement and reduction), satisfies IACUC monitoring and documentation requirements outlined in The Guide, and minimizes variability in measurements. Continuous monitoring and making adjustments to maintain stable vital signs are especially important during survival surgical procedures. Recent technological advances in monitors permit early detection of potential problems and facilitate key decisions during surgical procedures without creating additional burden on either the animal subject or the surgeon. Decreased mortality, improved recovery, and reduced measurement variability all contribute to better study outcomes. This presentation will discuss how an integrated approach to surgical monitoring can facilitate regulatory compliance and reduce both the workload during surgery and the number of surgeries required. Discussion will include monitoring and control of core body temperature, monitoring of ECG/heart rate, respiration rate and blood oxygenation, and documentation during surgical procedures. The target audience is veterinarians, laboratory animal care professionals, laboratory managers and technicians, and anyone interested in learning how to make surgical monitoring easy and improve subject survival rates.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Indus Instruments.

Low-Flow, Digital Anesthesia System for Mice and Rats
3:00 PM - 3:20 PM/Room: 17B
Speaker: Ethan Ide
Moderator: David FitzMiller

Many facilities and several traditional vaporizer manufacturers recommend a flow rate between 0.5 and 1L/min to deliver anesthesia to rodents. The recommended flow rate for a 30g mouse is approximately 50 mL/min (2-2.5 x minute volume). A traditional, human-sized vaporizer is not designed to deliver these low flow rates for mice and rats. Running such high flow rates with equipment not designed for use on rodents results in the dangerous exposure of lab personnel to waste anesthetic gas. A low-flow, digital anesthesia system is available that uses a fraction of the anesthetic and gas required by a traditional vaporizer. This system precisely delivers the optimal anesthetic amount for small laboratory animals and creates minimum WAG, significantly reducing the possibility of exposure and health concerns to lab personnel and the environment. You will learn the differences between a high-flow and low-flow vaporizer, the physiological effects of anesthesia on your animals, and ways to reduce your exposue to waste anesthetic gas. This presentation is ideal for technicians working with anesthetic equipment, as well as the investigators doing the study.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Kent Scientific.

Micro-Fluoroscopy: A New Imaging Modality in Small Animal Research
3:20 PM - 3:40 PM/Room: 17B
Speaker: Gil Zweig
Moderator: John A Park

Small animal-based research projects requiring the use of real-time x-ray presently have available fluoroscopic systems that employ either digital flat panel or Cesium Iodide intensifier x-ray imaging devices. Both devices, it will be seen, exhibit limitations in resolution and image magnification, as well as requiring relatively high radiation dose levels. A fluoroscopic imaging device and system will be discussed, which is shown to exhibit high resolution fluoroscopic images having a high degree of magnification using comparatively low-dose levels of radiation. The essential characteristic of magnification fluoroscopy is that while viewing a 50 millimeter field of view, the video image is a dynamic (moving) real-time fluoroscopic image that can be recorded as a movie and at the same time can be magnified approximately 25 times, much like a fluoroscopic microscope. The x-ray source used has a 10 micron focal spot size to minimize penumbra effect and is continuously energized, operating at an anode voltage of 35 to 40 kilovolts and a current of 150 MicroAmps. The x-ray source is positioned approximately 6 inches from the 50 mm diameter entrance window of the fluoroscope and has a beam limiter that shapes the beam to just fill the 50 mm fluoroscope entrance window. Since the image is intensified, the radiation dose levels required to produce the images are orders of magnitude less than those required by digital flat panel and consequently researchers can be performing surgical procedures on an anesthetized animal with a minimal of protective garments.

A Novel Treatment Option for Primates Suffering From Idiopathic Chronic Diarrhea
3:40 PM - 4:00 PM/Room: 17B
Speaker: Karen Froberg-Fejko
Moderator: Karena Thek

PrimiOtic and PrimiOtic Plus are primate-specific live probiotics containing the primate-derived probiotic bacteria Lactobacillus reuteri, a digestive commensal bacteria in the nonhuman primate. L. reuteri is a natural inhabitant of a healthy gastrointestinal tract that secretes reuterin, which has antimicrobial properties against pathogenic bacteria, such as Salmonella, while keeping the normal gut microflora in tact. L. reuteri also modulates and enhances the immune system. The audience will learn idiopathic chronic diarrhea (ICD) of nonhuman primates is a major gastrointestinal disorder in research animals. ICD is a leading cause of morbidity in rhesus macaques kept in captivity. Probiotics as defined by the World Health Organization are “live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host.” Probiotics have scientifically been demonstrated to support and normalize the gastrointestinal flora to maintain a healthy balanced gut minimizing the incidence of ICD and can be an effective method to decrease the incidence of diarrhea in captive nonhuman primates. Unlike traditional probiotics, the L. reuteri in PrimiOtic and PrimiOtic Plus have been harvested and cultured from the gut of a nonhuman primate. Recent research has identified the importance of host specificity in bacterial probiotics in effectively colonizing the gastrointestinal tract. Specifically, L. reuteri strains isolated from different animal species expressed host-specific genes, some of which were responsible for microbe attachment to the host gut surface. The host specificity of Primiotic and PrimiOtic Plus support the colonization of the probiotic in the gastrointestinal tract of the primate, conferring the benefits of probiotics in supporting and restoring gastrointestinal health. The targeted audience is veterinarians, technicians, husbandry staff, and primate vendors.

This Technical Trade Presentation is sponsored in part by Bio-Serv.

Oct 16   

Monday Morning


W-01 CMAR Prep Course
(8-hour workshop continued Tuesday 8:00 AM)
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 8C
Leader: Diana P Baumann
Faculty: Diana P Baumann, Camellia M Symonowicz
Facilitator: Sarah J Gilliam
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

We are heroes to millions of people and animals, and our work makes a profound difference in this world. As leaders, we have a responsibility to support and drive our employees and operations effectively, efficiently, and compassionately. CMAR certification provides us with a unique set of knowledge and tools. The Laboratory Animal Management Association (LAMA) has developed a workshop for the CMAR exams, designed for your success. Please join us for our preparatory workshop for the Animal Resource (AR) exam. Topics covered include effective management styles and motivating the workforce, training and education for laboratory animal professionals, managing physical resources, policy development, managing budgets, veterinary care, IACUC, and managing compliance. This prep course alone will not prepare you for the AR exam, but provides a refresher and review of your existing studies.

W-02 Developing a Cost Accounting System for Your Animal Facility
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 7
Leader/Faculty: David G Baker
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

Participants will learn the basic concepts and practical applications of developing a flexible, robust cost accounting and analysis system for their own research animal resource facility. The system developed will be Excel-based and will prove useful for rate (per diem) setting, as well as for other decision-making and forecasting functions of their facility. Participants will be instructed in advance to bring certain facility and personnel data with them in order to maximize the use of the time and allow them to begin developing their own system in the workshop. Participants will include animal facility directors, financial managers, and other vivarium leadership personnel.

W-03A Microsurgery Skills Training Using Surgical Loupes
(offered twice, also Monday 1:00 PM)
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 10B
Leader: Robert F Hoyt Jr
Faculty: Tannia S Clark, Tanya L Herzog, Tim J Hunt, Kenneth R Jeffries, Karen Keeran, Audrey Noguchi, Gayle Nugent, Tom Thomas, Art D Zetts
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: $250 Workshop Limit: 20

Performing surgical procedures with the aid of magnification has gained widespread use in human medicine over the past 30 years. Using surgical loupes, surgeons can now routinely perform procedures on small structures that were considered impossible only a few years ago. Within the past 20 years, the use of magnification has also spread to other health care disciplines, including dentists, dermatologists, and nurses, to increase precision, such that it is considered the standard of care. The use of microsurgery and its importance to biomedical research has only just begun to be realized. Because of their small body structures, rats and mice have generally not been considered as models for many types of surgical procedures routinely performed in biomedical research. Investigators elected to uselarger species (such as dogs, pigs, or nonhuman primates) for such modeling because surgical support equipment is more readily available and the techniques are more familiar. The recent shift in using genetically engineered rodents, especially mice, has now resulted in increased researcher desires to use these animals in more sophisticated modeling procedures, especially surgery. Rather than being limited to only simple procedures (e.g., IM, IP, or IV injections) researchers using microsurgery can now perform complex procedures on many rodent organ systems, such as the heart, lungs, and the gastrointestinal tract. This workshop will provide an introduction to the basic techniques, equipment, and general applications of microsurgery using surgical loupes. Hands-on training will be conducted in 2 phases: teaching students to develop technical skills with exercises using surgical loupes and applying these skills to perform simple surgical procedures using rodent surrogates. We have an enhanced teacher:student ratio for this workshop to increase success.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Midwest Veterinary Supply; Surgitel Systems, a Division of General Scientific Corporation; SurgiReal and RICA Surgical Products, Inc.

W-04 Play-Doh Pinkies, Squooshey Mice, and Jeopardy: Techniques for Training Husbandry Technicians in a Classroom Setting
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 4B
Leaders: Kaile J Bennett, Jayson L Egeler, LaJuanda M Carter
Faculty: Kaile J Bennett, Jayson L Egeler, LaJuanda M Carter, Melissa C Dyson
Facilitator: Jennifer M Schmidt
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 25

Training a large number of husbandry employees simultaneously can be a difficult proposition. Due to increased staffing requirements at our facility, we adapted a training program normally used for 1-2 trainees to a group consisting of 8-10 new rodent husbandry technicians. Accommodating this amount of trainees at one time required us to rethink our previous husbandry training structure. Limitations on the number of trainers and animal rooms available for training led us to develop a unique curriculum which incorporated classroom style learning and activities that complemented traditional in-room training. We observed a successful transition of skills learned in the classroom to application in the animal rooms. Other benefits included increased comradery between trainees, higher number of individuals completing training, and increased involvement from current husbandry staff as mentors. In this workshop, we share our successes as well as hurdles encountered with developing and implementing this program. Participants will have the opportunity to participate in hands-on activities we use in our program. Attendees will receive materials that outline our curriculum, as well as activity and lesson plans. There will also be time dedicated to discuss how to apply aspects of this program to the participant’s home institutions and address specific questions. The target audience for this workshop should be trainers, managers, supervisors, and anyone else involved in the training process who would like to see a new twist on husbandry training.

W-05 Technician to Supervisor 101: The Ups and Downs of Managing People
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 5A
Leader/Faculty: Stephen T Baker
Facilitator: Leah M Curtin
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

When you excel at a technical skill or provide superior husbandry/study support, individuals are often rewarded with a promotion that expands their role and responsibility to include managing others. Individuals whose primary focus/expertise are animals are asked to change gears and channel their soft skills. This workshop will provide a high-level overview of key concepts to support a successful transition. Topics will include performance management, effective interviewing skills, hiring and firing, how to handle conflict, coaching versus delegating, and how to communicate effectively. This interactive workshop will take participants through various exercises, role plays, and what-if scenarios to provide take-aways which can be applied back at their place of employment. The targeted audience includes new supervisors or first-level managers. If you are new to the world of managing others or contemplating getting into management, you do not want to miss this workshop.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Pfizer, Inc.


A Review of International Rodent Sentinel Programs with a New Technical Focus
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: 9B
Leader/Moderator: John J Hasenau
Facilitator: TBN

Rodent sentinel monitoring programs have been evolving for many years. One of the most recent advancements has been exhaust air dust (EAD) monitoring. Te evolution has been driven by technical abilities to evaluate at the rack levels and at the room levels using different ways of sampling. This seminar will be a review from international colleagues on how EAD sampling is being applied at their institutions/organizations. The overall benefits and limitations will be presented and discussed. The incorporation of EAD testing in these international sentinel programs has greatly promoted achievement of the 3Rs. Initial discussion will review the history and explain some types of rodent sentinel systems that are in use and why they are necessary. Then we will evaluate the needs, practicality, the realized benefits, and the outcomes of EAD additions into sentinel programs in the research community. Both mouse and rat sentinel testing will be discussed. A multicenter approach was used for the Italian, German, and English facilities for testing at the rack level of sampling, and a centralized level of sampling was done in Canada. Individuals from different institutions will present their programs and how the incorporation of the EAD into their programs has altered their programs and their use of live sentinels. This seminar is for technicians, managers, veterinarians, and administration who wish to better understand sentinel monitoring and international sentinel programs. The 3Rs will be emphasized throughout the seminar.


8:00 John J Hasenau Welcome and Introductions
8:05 John J Hasenau Historical Review of Rodent Sentinel Monitoring Programs
8:25 Alberto Gobbi  How the Health Monitoring Program of Our Mouse Facility Is Improved by EAD sampling
8:55 Markus Brielmeier Do Soiled Bedding Sentinels Provide Any Beneficial Information Compared to EAD Samples?”
9:25 Graham Morrissey Incorporation of EAD into a Rat Sentinel Program
9:45 Lise R Phaneuf Comparison of Exhaust Air Dust Testing of a Centralized IVC System to a Traditional Sentinel-Based Rodent Health Monitoring Program
10:05 All   Discussion

Good Laboratory Practice in the Academic Environment: What it Is, How to Implement, and How to Compare to a Contract Research Organization 
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom D
Leader: Joanne L Zahorsky-Reeves
Moderator: Trinka W Adamson
Facilitator: Roxanne M Morales

Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) is a regulated system concerned with the organizational process and the conditions under which nonclinical studies are planned, performed, monitored, recorded, archived, and reported under the Food and Drug Administration Code of Federal Regulations 21 Part 58. In this seminar, our first speaker will provide a brief history of GLP (why these regulations were promulgated) and detail the components that are necessary for its successful undertaking. Our second speaker will give her experience of creating a GLP-compliant testing facility at a major university, including the trials that have entailed, and comment on what degree of success this university has had. Our third speaker has a background in GLP at both a university and at a contract research organization (CRO), and will give perspective from each. Our concluding speaker, who has been a study director for GLP studies in both environments, will present his insight on what sorts of studies may be best done at each type of facility. Our target audience consists of veterinarians, veterinary technicians, operations/facility managers, and researchers. Audience members will learn what GLP is, what groundwork is required to get this sort of regulated program established in an academic setting, and leave with a better understanding of whether or not they are willing to invest the time, effort, and resources required on behalf of their researchers.


8:00 Joanne Zahorsky-Reeves  Welcome and Introduction
8:15 Philippe Baneux  GLPs and Quality Assurance Systems: The Basics for Academic Settings
8:35 Joanne Zahorsky-Reeves  Establishing and Running GLP in an Academic Environment: How We’re Doing So Far
9:00 Heather Sidener  Should We Start GLP at Our University? Perspective from a CRO Veteran
9:25 James G McCabe  The Pros and Cons of Initiating a GLP Study in a University Setting Versus a CRO
9:45 All  Discussion

Pairing Strategies for Adult Macaques 
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: 18B
Leader: Keely McGrew
Moderator: Michele Wilkinson
Facilitator: Nicole Monts De Oca

This seminar will focus on methods used across different types of facilities to pair-house adult male macaques (Macaca fascicularis and mulatta). Participants will learn methodology for selection of prospective partners, introduction techniques, and strategies to build and maintain relationships. Behavioral indicators of compatibility will be discussed. The differing techniques covered in this seminar include partner selection by temperament, by instinct, by size disparity, or study criteria. In addition to same-sex pairing, the seminar will also discuss alternate paradigms to isosexual pairs: social housing adult males with ovarioectomized females and vasectomized males with intact females, in both pairs and trios. The audience that would benefit from this seminar includes technicians, veterinarians, and behavior managers from NHP facilities who would like to improve or start a social housing program for NHPs.


8:00 Keely McGrew  Welcome and Introduction
8:10 Keely McGrew  Partner Selection and Introduction Methods
8:30 Melissa M Dragon  Social Housing Mature Males: Clues and Cues
8:55 Jennifer N Camacho  A Step-By-Step Approach to Pair Housing and Building Relationships with Macaques
9:20 Carolyn M Allen  A Cyno Love Connection: Successful Pairing of Aged Male Cynomolgus Macaques with Ovariectomized Females
9:45 Kristen A Flora  Mixed-Sex Socializations and Staff Training to Support Relationships

Recent Advances in Genome Engineering in Rodent and Nonrodent Species

8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom F
Leader: Monika A Burns
Moderator: Hilda R Holcombe
Facilitator: Erin Bryant

This seminar is designed for researchers working with genetically modified animals and veterinarians responsible for their care. First, CRISPR technology will be reviewed, including a comparison with traditional methods for modification of mouse genomes. The audience will learn about the advantages and potential drawbacks of using CRISPRs to produce mouse models. A brief review of case studies will provide examples of the various approaches CRISPRs can be used to generate genetically modified animals. Additional presentations will focus primarily on primate models. The audience will learn protocols for establishment and support of transgenic nonhuman primate colonies, including required equipment, procedures, and common clinical issues encountered during the process of generating transgenic marmosets. The focus of this presentation will give background and context for veterinary staff working with transgenic nonhuman primates. Finally, audience members will learn which disease models have been created in nonhuman primate species using various genetic engineering techniques, including CRISPR. Advantages and disadvantages of the use of transgenic NHP models in basic research will be discussed. This presentation will provide a scientist’s perspective on the use of transgenic nonhuman primate models in biomedical research.


8:00 Hilda R Holcombe  Welcome and Introduction
8:10 Hilda R Holcombe  Introduction to CRISPR Technology
8:20 David Grass  Overview of CRISPR Technology Used in Mouse Models
8:50 Monika A Burns  Veterinary Support Practices for Transgenic Marmoset Programs
9:15 Qiangge Zhang  Genetically Engineered Nonhuman Primate Models of Human Disease
9:35 All  Discussion

Special Topic Lectures 

Aseptic Technique in Rodent Surgery Made Easy
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 9B
Speaker: Marcel I Perret-Gentile
Moderator: Luis M Zorrilla
Facilitator: TBN

Believers in the importance of aseptic technique have dealt with the frustration of trying to implement rodent aseptic surgery in programs. Rodent aseptic surgery application is cumbersome, difficult to illustrate, and difficult to implement. Sources for easy, well-illustrated materials to teach investigators proper technique are rare. This struggle has inspired the creation of easy to follow illustrations to help investigators, veterinarians, trainers, and IACUCs everywhere to implement aseptic rodent surgery skills. This presentation will rely heavily on images and videos where the presenter will walk the audience through very simple and fun steps in the application of aseptic technique. This presentation was previously presented at the 2017 LabRoots Laboratory Animal Sciences Virtual Conference and the Texas Branch of AALAS. Participants wishing to further their skills can register for the “Would You Like to Improve Your Suturing and Rodent Surgery Aseptic Technique?” workshop on Monday, October 16, 2017, 1:00-5:00 p.m. Target audience includes veterinarians, IACUC administrators/committees, trainers, research staff, veterinary technicians, and others.

This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by Kent Scientific Corporation and SurgiReal Products, Inc. and Atramat (a subsidiary of Internactional Farmaceutica, S.A. de C.U.)

Biosafety Fitness: How to Develop and Implement an Effective Biosafety Training Program
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 18B
Speaker: Hannah M Payne
Moderator: Kathy Laber
Facilitator: TBN

Human safety should be the first priority in any facility conducting infectious disease research. Establishing a comprehensive training program to include introductory, annual follow-up, and study-specific training is one of the most important ways we ensure safety with biological hazards at the University of Georgia (UGA). Our comprehensive training program, along with the UGA Occupational Health Program, is our foundation for exposure and disease outbreak prevention. UGA’s Animal Health Research Center (AHRC), in collaboration with the Office of Biosafety (OBS), develops and implements this training program to capture the following: BSL-3 biocontainment introductory training; select agent annual training; PAPR/ tight fitting respirator training; facility introductory and annual follow up training; emergency response annual training (evacuations, spills, needle sticks, etc.); access control training; infectious agent training; donning and doffing training; species-specific animal training; standard operating procedure (SOP) training and competency evaluations; and documentation management. This special topic lecture will describe the AHRC’s comprehensive training program, the parameters and methods used to create the program, and how we evaluate and evolve our program. Participants will learn how to develop and evaluate an effective comprehensive biocontainment/biosafety training program using the AHRC program as a model. The target audience includes human resources staff, animal care staff, students, supervisors, and biosafety officers and staff.

Charles C Hunter Lecture: Living among Bats
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom D
Speaker: Dianne Odegard
Moderator: Samm C Bartee
Facilitator: Suzanne V Mounsey

This lecture will cover the many benefits of bats to our environment, as well as the threats that bats face, both old and new. This is a topic that bat conservationists and scientists are working hard to address. Bats are vital to our ecosystems. Seventy percent of bat species worldwide eat insects, providing beneficial insect pest control services. Many species can eat 75% of their body weight in insects every night. Research in recent years has shown that bats save the agriculture industry across the U.S. a minimum of $3.7 billion every year, both in crop damage averted and the need for fewer pesticides. The targeted audience is anyone attending the conference.

This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by Committee for Technician Awareness and Development (CTAD).

The Proven Benefits of Openness: How the UK is Ridding Itself of Animal Rights Extremism and Helping the Public to Understand Animal Research
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom F
Speaker: Wendy Jarrett
Moderator: Paula A Clifford
Facilitator: Kirk Leech

In 2012, public opinion polling in the UK showed that overall acceptance of medical research using animals had dropped by 10 percentage points from 76% to 66%. The biomedical research sector realised that it needed to do something significant in order to help people to understand more about why and how animals are used in research. The result was the Concordat on Openness on Animal Research in the UK, published in May 2014 with 72 signatory organizations, and now with more than 110. Signing the Concordat commits signatory organizations to providing information on their websites and being more open about the animal research they carry out or fund. In the three years that the Concordat has been in place, the UK has seen a step-change in the amount and quality of publicly available information on research using animals. Over the past 10 years, the country has also seen a dramatic reduction in illegal animal rights activity, now at practically negligible levels. The speaker will give a brief overview of how and why the Concordat was developed and will then present several of the many examples of institutional openness and public engagement on animal research that have come about as a result of the Concordat. The current climate surrounding biomedical research in the UK will also be examined – government support, media interest, animal rights activity, and public opinion - and future plans for openness in the UK will be shared. The session will then lead into a Q & A and discussion with the audience on whether any of the UK’s experiences and successes could be translated to the North American context. This lecture will be of interest to animal care staff, facility managers, researchers, and those with a security or communications role.

Monday Afternoon

Panel Discussions

Are We Speaking the Same Language? How the IACUC, Veterinarian, and Investigators Can Communicate
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 12B
Leader/Moderator: Ellen Kapsalis
Facilitator: TBN
Panelist: Sari Izenwasser, Elisabeth Koncza, Julia Zaias

The panel will present compliance scenarios that often are viewed and interpreted differently by IACUC personnel, veterinarians, and investigators. Various points of view will be presented and explored. For example, what happens when a PI wants to initiate a procedure that is not IACUC approved and the vet advises the procedure can harm the animals? What happens when a PI treats what he labels a typical side effect (not described in the protocol) of a model, thus alleviating discomfort in the animal? Yet, the vet advises the treatment will cause distress and the IACUC has not approved this treatment. In each scenario, the PI thinks he is doing the right thing and believes the IACUC and the vet are over-regulating. The panel aims to highlight the importance of understanding different perspectives in order to resolve complex issues in the most beneficial manner for all parties. The overarching message is that successful animal programs work best when constructive dialog exists among all stakeholders. The target audience includes IACUC professionals and staff, veterinarians, and principal investigators/research staff.

Don't Get Bent Out of Shape: Designing and Implementing a Robust Ergonomics Program
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 19A
Leader/Moderator: Jennifer S Kilpatrick
Facilitator: Paul Chamberlain
Panelist: Elizabeth M Horrigan, Keith A Kun, Nathan A Rogers, Terry Snyder

Job tasks associated with lab animal care can be high risk for both acute and cumulative musculoskeletal injury. Reaching, lifting, prolonged standing, and walking, combined with highly repetitive tasks, compound to increase the risk for work-related discomfort and injury. Injuries of this type have a negative impact on morale leading, to a decrease in the quality and productivity of work and the potential loss of experienced employees. Ergonomic evaluations and interventions can successfully address these problems in a cost-effective manner when implemented properly. Making changes to job organization, tools, training, and behaviors can be challenging when vivarium staff have operated in the same manner for a long period of time. Using a participatory ergonomic approach to identify risks and design proposed changes can be an effective method for successfully overcoming these obstacles. This panel will bring together the committee responsible for assessing, designing, and implementing a participatory ergonomic program for the animal care technicians employed at Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Division of Comparative Medicine. They will describe what a participatory ergonomic program encompasses, and outline the process for implementing such a program while engaging animal care technicians, supervisors, and managers in the process.

Pathology Quiz Bowl
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 17B
Leader/Moderator: Cindy Besch-Williford
Facilitators: Kari L Chesney, Michael K Fink
Panelist: Craig L Franklin, Angela Brice, Cindy Besch-Williford

This panel discussion will consist of an informal review of the pathology of laboratory animals in the form of an image-based quiz. Topics will include lesions of well-described infectious and non-infectious diseases, pathological manifestations of emerging diseases, and selected phenotypic characteristics of important genetically engineered animal models. The images will be educational and challenging to laboratory animal specialists at all levels of pathology expertise. Targeted audience is comparative medicine trainees, laboratory animal veterinarians, pathologists, and scientists. Participants from comparative medicine training programs have the opportunity to receive a fabulous cash prize for the highest score. A participation cash prize is also provided. The comparative medicine trainee with the highest score will be recognized at the Committee for Laboratory Animal Training and Research (CLATR) luncheon on Tuesday. Participants will learn gross and histologic pathology of laboratory animals.

This Panel Discussion is sponsored in part by IDEXX BioResearch and Committee on Laboratory Animal Training and Research (CLATR).

Retirement of Nonhuman Primates in Research
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 16A
Leader/Moderator: Rachele McAndrew
Facilitator: Jennapher Lingo VanGilder
Panelist: Jason Robert, Stephen Helms Tillery, Amy Kerwin, Kristina Carter

Retiring laboratory animals has become more popular among the research and lab animal community in recent years. Many institutions have successful adoption programs. However, retiring nonhuman primates can be challenging. Roadblocks include institutional and PI resistance, lack of communication between research labs and sanctuaries, cost, and sanctuary space availability. This panel discussion will focus on the importance of lab animal retirement, discuss some barriers that prevent initiation of a successful retirement program, provide different viewpoints from the research and sanctuary community, and offer practical advice on how to start an NHP retirement program at your institution. The panel will be comprised of an ethicist, a principal investigator, a sanctuary director, and a facility trainer. This discussion will help animal technicians, veterinarians, animal care directors, and administrative staff to start productive discussions at their home institutions.


W-06 Boomers, Gen Xers, and Millennials: Are You Effectively Managing Generational Gaps?
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 5A
Leader/Faculty: Jamie Mueller
Facilitator: Trinka W Adamson
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

This workshop provides content and discussion to increase your awareness and understanding in working with millennials, as well as managing and reducing generational gaps to improve your work and leadership across generational cultures. Participants will take away information that will increase overall generational awareness and understanding about the issues, such as why millennials work differently than previous generations. Participants will also develop effective strategies for communicating across generations, learn how to adapt style in generationally diverse situations and the skills necessary to do so for organizational and team effectiveness, and learn strategies to resolve conflict and build trust and sustainable relationships across generations. The workshop is targeted to directors and managers who manage team members from different generations and team members who work and collaborate with a variety of different generations.

W-03B Microsurgery Skills Training Using Surgical Loupes
(offered twice, also Monday 8:00 AM)
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 10B
Leader: Robert F Hoyt Jr
Faculty: Tannia S Clark, Tanya L Herzog, Tim J Hunt, Kenneth R Jeffries, Karen Keeran, Audrey Noguchi, Gayle Nugent, Tom Thomas, Art D Zetts
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: $250 Workshop Limit: 20

See Monday AM for description.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Midwest Veterinary Supply; Surgitel Systems, a Division of General Scientific Corporation; SurgiReal and RICA Surgical Products, Inc.

W-07 Monitoring and Troubleshooting in Large Animal Anesthesia: Tips and Tricks
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 4B
Leader/Faculty: Cholawat Pacharinsak
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 30

Anesthesia is often a crucial part of animal research, especially with large animals. To make anesthesia safe and effective, anesthetists have to understand how to monitor it. Such monitoring provides an early warning system, the first step to alert them to take actions before complications become irreversible. Specifically, the goals of anesthetic monitoring are to enhance the animal’s safety by assisting anesthetists in identifying the types of sources of complications. Once they are recognized, anesthetists can initiate appropriate troubleshooting techniques. This dry lab workshop focuses on two goals: understanding commonly used anesthetic monitoring equipment and interpreting the data that equipment provides in pigs, nonhuman primates, rabbits, sheep, dogs, and cats and learning a set of troubleshooting techniques. This workshop is suited for veterinarians, veterinary technicians, IACUC members, and researchers.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Kent Scientific and VetEquip.

W-08 Step Outside Your Box by Using Your Five Minds
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 8B
Leader: Daphne L Molnar
Faculty: Diana P Baumann, Carolyn M Malinowski, Daphne L Molnar, Lisa K Secrest, William L Singleton
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

In a time of relentless change, there's only one thing that is certain: new challenges and opportunities will emerge that are virtually unimaginable today. We often require more than just competencies or technical expertise to be successful. How can we know which skills will be required to succeed in the future? Using Howard Gardner's "Five Minds for the Future," this interactive workshop will explore this concept of the disciplinary mind, the synthesizing mind, the creating mind, the respectful mind, and the ethical mind. While it's important to increase your emotional intelligence (EQ), we need to shift from the EQ description toward the five minds prescription in an effort to reduce limitations imposed by being unable to conceptualize beyond a single path. Our hope is to convince each participant to step outside their box, think about a topic in a variety of ways, and develop an innate understanding of how to embrace the ever changing environment. The task of cultivating minds constitutes a major challenge to all individuals who work within such a disciplined industry. This workshop will benefit all attendees.

W-09 Would You Like to Improve Your Suturing and Rodent Surgery Aseptic Technique?
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 7
Leaders: Marcel I Perret-Gentil, Szczepan W Baran
Faculty: Szczepan W Baran, Danielle Ewing, Laurie Long, Sarah Newman, Marcel I Perret-Gentil
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 30

You may feel proficient, even confident in performing rodent surgery, however you may be surprised how small improvements can have a huge impact on your animal’s recovery and data. Participants will learn and refine commonly used suture and knot-tying techniques. Additionally, participants will learn how to refine their aseptic technique, provide supportive care, and apply these concepts during surgery. In addition, easy to apply hands-on exercises will be demonstrated that have been shown to significantly improve aseptic technique. The workshop will also focus on appropriate hand-eye coordination to improve suturing skills. A state-of-the art inanimate model will be introduced and used during the suture practice. In this highly interactive workshop, participants will be provided with an overview of basic suturing principles and refinements that will improve and enhance your overall surgical skills. Common errors and complications will be discussed and addressed. This workshop is designed for individuals who have minimal or no skills, but is also a great opportunity for those with considerable experience wanting to upgrade their skills and teach others enhanced technique. To get the most out of this workshop, we strongly recommend participants attend "Rodent Surgery: Aseptic Technique Made Easy," the one-hour special topic lecture prior to this workshop.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Kent Scientific Corporation and SurgiReal Products, Inc. and Atramat (a subsidiary of Internactional Farmaceutica, S.A. de C.U.)


Lytic Enzymes: Exploring Novel Antimicrobial Therapies and Potential Uses in Laboratory Animal Medicine
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom F
Leader/Moderator: Neil S Lipman
Facilitator: Mariya Gugel

Currently, alternative antimicrobial therapies need to be developed due to the increase in antibiotic resistant bacteria and the development of fewer new antibiotics. Bacteriophages, which are species-specific viruses that infect most known bacteria, are being studied as the source of potential novel antimicrobial agents. At the end of replication and assembly inside a host bacterium, the bacteriophage produce a peptidoglycan hydrolytic enzyme (lysin) that degrades the bacterial cell wall, resulting in hypotonic lysis of the bacterium and release of phage progeny. When applied exogenously, purified forms of these enzymes are likewise able to access the peptidoglycan layer in the Gram-positive cell envelope and produce the same lytic effect. Furthermore, lytic enzymes produced by bacteria have also been studied as potential antimicrobial agents. For example, lysotaphin, a zinc metalloproteinase produced by Staphylococcus simulans can lyse Staphylococcus aureus by disrupting its peptidoglycan layer. In this seminar the speakers will introduce key concepts related to lysin structure and function, discuss their characterization as antimicrobial agents, review animal models used to validate their antimicrobial efficacy, and explore potential uses in laboratory animal medicine. The audience will gain an understanding of how lytic enzymes work, their advantages over antibiotics, and how in vitro and in vivo models are used to validate their efficacy. Potential uses and advantages in treating select bacterial diseases of laboratory animals will also be presented including treatment of Corynebacterium-associated hyperkeratosis (CAH) in mice and methicillin-resistant S. aureus infections in non-human primates. This seminar is targeted to all personnel involved in laboratory animal science including clinicians, animal care staff, and commercial breeders.


2:45 Neil S Lipman Welcome and Introduction
2:55 Vincent A Fischetti The Development of Peptidoglycan Hydrolases as Novel Therapeutics
3:20 Chad Euler Killing Staphylococci in Rat Wound and Surgical Infections Using a Topically Applied Bacteriophage Endolysin
3:40 David M Donovan  Phage Lysins to Control Mastitis
4:00 Christopher Cheleuitte-Nieves  Lytic Enzyme-Based Therapy for Corynebacterium-Associated Hyperkeratosis (CAH) in Mice and Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) Infections of Cranial Implants in Nonhuman Primates

The Laboratory Animal Professional's Guide to the Art and Science Behind Effectively Communicating Animal Research 
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom D
Leader: Kelly A Metcalf Pate
Moderator: Logan K France
Facilitator: Meghan S Vermillion

Effective communication is key to the success of all laboratory animal professionals, and to be optimally effective requires the ability to adjust communication style to the target audience. This seminar will use an interactive format to explore the science behind communication, allow us to appreciate the art of effective communication to different populations with whom we commonly interact, and hone all of our communication skills in a number of scenarios typical to animal research. We review general guidelines for effective communication through a series of lectures considering the challenges inherent in and proven strategies for communication between laboratory animal professionals and each other, researchers, and the public. We will consider the different backgrounds and goals with which each population approaches animal research, discuss typical scenarios for which communication are key, and acquaint the audience with the terminology and strategies that facilitate effective communication with each population. Each lecture will be followed with an interactive opportunity for audience members to practice their communication skills in scenarios led by our expert communicator speakers. This seminar series is suitable for all laboratory animal professionals, and will give participants a strong understanding of key strategies for effective communication when interacting with researchers, the public and each other, thus preparing them to confidently talk about their work.


2:45 Kelly A Metcalf Pate  Welcome and Introductions
2:50 Cindy A Buckmaster Cross-Disciplinary Communications within the LAM Community/Interactive Scenarios to Practice Cross-Disciplinary Communications
3:30 Melanie Graham Communicating with Researchers Who Work with Animals/Interactive Scenarios to Practice Communication with Researchers
4:10 Paula A Clifford Communicating About Animal Research with the Public/Interactive Scenarios to Practice Communication with the Public

Transgenic Pigs in Translational Research 
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 9B
Leader: Lawrence Schook
Moderator: Kelly D Garcia
Facilitator: Michael Eichner

Translational studies require animal models that closely resemble humans in size, genetic diversity, and developmental. Transgenic pigs have been introduced to address this need and have been used to study organ transplantation, infectious disease, genetic therapy, metabolic disease, and more. This seminar will focus on the development and refinement of large animal models to address research needs in translational studies. Various transgenic pig models that have been developed will be described. Experience with the oncopig will be used to illustrate regulatory and management hurdles faced when working with genetically modified agricultural animals in studies across multiple institutions. Oncopigs are transgenic pigs that carry two Cre-inducible cancer-promoting genes (KRASG12D and P53R176H). These genes are silent, and the animals are phenotypically normal, until induction via injection with a replication incompetent adenoviral vector. After induction, control of cell division is perturbed and tumors form. The learning objectives are to define unmet needs in biomedical translational research and limitations of current models; to describe the genesis, capabilities, and applications of transgenic swine models; to illustrate the practical considerations of implementing a transgenic large animal model program in a multisite academic setting; and to demonstrate the importance of data standards in building a multi-site research infrastructure. Target audience includes veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and industry researchers.


2:45 Larry Schook  Welcome and Introduction
2:55 Ron C Gaba  Setting the Stage for a Modeling Human Disease: The Need for Large Animal Models
3:20 Eckhard Wolf  Sharing Advances on Large Animal Models: Transgenic Pigs and Implications for Future Research
3:50 Larry Schook  Past and Future Strategies for Creating Porcine Models
4:20 Kelly D Garcia  The Oncopig: A Model to Study Cirrhosis and Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Vivarium Master Planning: Doing More with Less
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 18B
Leader: Mike P Mottet
Moderator: Jerry Percifield
Facilitator: TBN

This seminar will include discussions from the leadership at three major Institutions, each of which has embarked on a master planning/consolidation study, to determine and identify opportunities to improve efficiencies in all aspects of their animal programs. At the University of California--San Diego, Dr. Richter has implemented the major consolidation effort that came out of his planning study with the opening of a new, consolidated cage processing center that has enabled the university to consolidate and expand animal housing and procedure spaces by the implementation of a campus wide, central cage processing facility. The University of Michigan is just completing its master plan and will offer in-sites to the challenges associated with conducting a master planning effort within a well-established program. The University of North Carolina completed its master plan more than a year ago, and Dr. Fletcher will discuss how that process was viewed internally and update the attendees on what has transpired since the Master Planning was completed. Mike Mottet, who participated in all of these master planning efforts, will provide an overview of the assessment and master planning processes, the challenges that were confronted, and the benefits seen by the Institutions that have incorporated a master plan into their long term strategies. This seminar will benefit all of those involved in vivarium operations, animal facilities financial strategies and building management, planning of new facilities, and overall institutional planning.


2:45 Jerry Percifield  Welcome and Introduction
3:00 Craig A Fletcher  How Consolidation Effort Transpires
3:30 Robert C Dysko  Consolidation Challenges
4:00 Michael P Mottet  Assessment and Consolidation Process
4:30 Philip J Richter  Implementation of a Campus Wide Consolidation for a Central Cage Processing Facility

Exhibit Hall Hours

  • Monday, October 16, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.  
    (8:30am - Ribbon Cutting Ceremony to open the Exhibit Hall)
Oct 17   

Tuesday Morning 


W-10 Accusations of Animal Cruelty by Lab Infiltrators: Why Do Some Make Headlines while Others Avoid Media Attention?
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 5A
Leader/Faculty: Wendy Jarrett, Kirk Leech
Facilitator: Paula A Clifford
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

Animal rights activists have long used the tactics of undercover filming and exaggerated claims to accuse animal researchers of malpractice. Pre-screening and other security measures can help to stop an infiltrator gaining access to the lab, but these measures do not always work. We will explore the strategies that you and your colleagues can employ to make sure that an infiltration scenario does not cause your institution lasting reputational damage. By studying past examples of infiltrations in the UK and Europe, the steps taken by the organizations involved, the media coverage that followed them, and the results of official investigations into the infiltrators’ claims, we will work with workshop participants to understand what makes a successful media and communications response. Participants will also learn how to prepare robust mechanisms in advance of potential crisis situations, how openness and proactive communications can help to lessen the chances of negative publicity, and how each person working in an animal facility can help to prevent problem scenarios developing in the first place. This workshop will be of interest to animal care staff, facility managers, researchers and those with a security or communications role.

W-01 CMAR Prep Course continued
(8-hour workshop continued from Monday 8:00 AM)
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 8C
Leader: Diana P Baumann
Faculty: Diana P Baumann, Camellia M Symonowicz
Facilitator: Sarah J Gilliam

See Monday 8:00 AM for description.

W-11 Gnotobiotics Program Startup and Development
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 8B
Leader: Julia R Krout
Faculty: Stephanie W Fowler, Christina M Olivares, Alton G Swennes, Betty R Theriault
Facilitator: Stephanie M Cormier
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

This workshop is designed to provide guidance to those in the early stages of developing a gnotobiotics program. Participants will gain perspective from workshop faculty that have developed large academically oriented programs. The workshop will address each phase of program startup including needs assessment, facility space and retrofit, equipment choices, funding, and cost recovery. Initial setup considerations such as diet and autoclave validation, microbiological monitoring, acquisition of animals, and staff development will also be discussed. This workshop targets those that are currently or might become involved in setting up a gnotobiotics program, including managers, veterinarians, research scientists, and program administrators. Presenters will guide the workshop attendees through facility design, management, staff selection and training, and operational considerations in real-life scenarios. The workshop will also include fee structure development.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Allentown, Charles River, Class Biologically Clean, Taconic and Tecniplast.

W-12 IACUC Protocol Review Challenges
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 7
Leader: Marcy A Brown
Faculty: Deb A Frolicher, Eileen Morgan, William S Stokes, AAALAC, Intl Representative
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

This popular workshop will be presented using a mixture of case studies, group discussion, and interactive exercises. Workshop participants may submit scenarios involving protocol review challenges or IACUC issues that have either occurred at their institution or that they wish to discuss. Panelists will consist of representatives from OLAW, USDA, and AAALAC International. Participants will work in small groups to discuss certain challenges and then share their recommendations with the whole group. Panelists will interact with each group on an individual basis to assist them in developing methods to deal with difficult situations involving the IACUC. Situations likely to be discussed may include pain/distress categories, humane endpoints, rationale for species and numbers of animals, noncompliance, difficult investigators, high-risk animal models, how to implement and use veterinary verification and consultation (VVC), and training issues.


A Case for Reinvention of Vivarium Operations: How are High-Performing Organizations Defined, What Are They Doing, and How Did They Start?

8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: 18B
Leader/Moderator: David W Brammer
Facilitator: Sai Tumalla

The lean jargon of efficiency, productivity, value added, and technology tools have, despite their seeming ubiquity, become trendy and established in our lab animal community. As lean continues its advance, the implications for revenues, profits, and opportunities will be dramatic. But the main question still asked is “Which comes first, implementation of lean tools or the change of culture to continuous improvement?” We will cast light on this seemly circular reasoning and learn from multiple institutions on just how they started. Programs tend to focus on efficiency approaches which often require institutions to change their operational (how they perform their work) direction significantly. The benefits of strengthening your organizational culture underpin these bolder actions. An engaging and problem-embracing organizational culture is important for several reasons: it enhances the ability to perceive threats/opportunities, and bolsters the scope of actions that a program/department can take in response to operational changes. In contrast to cultural change, implementing a limited set of lean tools may lead to using the same tools for every problem or ignoring problems until the proper tools are found. This leads to the “if you only have a hammer, all problems look like nails syndrome." Using the collective experience of several institutions, we will demonstrate common points where programs can start, tricks on how to maintain the momentum to achieve efficient, objective metrics that demonstrate evidence of high performance, and leadership tips that can be used at all levels to sustain your operational gains long term. Using the collective experience of several institutions, we will demonstrate the starting point and the momentum to achieve a level of efficiency driven operations. The starting point will allow everyone to understand the goals and results that can be achieved; products and services, vendor relations, value-added processes, supply chains, team empowerment and leadership. The targeted audience is husbandry managers, supervisors and facility leadership.


8:00 David W Brammer  Welcome and Introduction
8:05 Gerard M Cronin  Make it Funky: How Play-Based Learning Can Move the Culture Needle
8:30 Donna M Jarrell  Sustained Lean Culture: Why Lean Tools Can Be Dangerous
8:55 Eric P Georgelos  The Lean Lexicon: Myths and Misconceptions
9:20 Ronald Wilson  Lean Management: From Trending to an Adoption of a Culture
9:45 Jarrod Nichol  Establishing and Maintaining a Culture of Change

This Seminar is sponsored in part by University of Houston and Vivarium Operational Excellence Network.

Dare to Care (D2C): Developing a Sustainable Compassion Fatigue Program that Meets Your Institutional Needs
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: 9B
Leaders/Moderators: Sally Thompson-Iritani, James "Preston" Van Hooser
Facilitator: Kathleen J Andrich

This presentation will introduce the topic of compassion fatigue as it applies to both people who work directly with animals (animal technicians, veterinarians and veterinary technicians, researchers) and members of the IACUC and administrative support staff. We will reflect and have interactive discussions in relation to both the causes and impacts of compassion fatigue. Participants will be provided with tools and strategies to identify, ameliorate, reduce, and avoid compassion fatigue, as well as examples on how to develop and implement a sustainable program that will meet the needs of their institution. The learning objectives are to introduce the topic of compassion fatigue, provide individual strategies on how to manage human emotions for laboratory animal professionals, and to develop and implement a sustainable compassion fatigue program. The use of animals in the biomedical research profession is a complex and highly regulated field. Due to high levels of compassion fatigue in this field, the authors will share their own experience on how the Office of Animal Welfare at the University of Washington developed and implemented a sustainable compassion fatigue program that worked well for their institution.


8:00 Sally Thompson-Iritani  Welcome and Introduction
8:15 Sally Thompson-Iritani  Breakout Session Censogram Exercise and Concept Mapping
8:45 Sara E Kerner  Introduction to Compassion Fatigue, Self Reflection, and Strategies for Coping Mechanisms
9:05 James "Preston" Van Hooser  Developing and Implementing a Compassion Fatigue Program
9:35 Cynthia A Pekow  Compassion Fatigue and Euthanasia

Innovative Frontiers in Automated Rodent Home Cage Behavioral Monitoring and Animal Welfare
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom F
Leader/Moderator: John J Hasenau
Facilitator: TBN

Continuous automated home cage monitoring allows data collection without causing disruption(s) to the animals. The monitoring and analysis of movement and behaviors allows comparisons to traditional behavioral testing systems with a potential replacement end goal. Automated home cage monitoring is constantly undergoing innovation and improvement to help achieve the 3Rs (especially refinement). The history and types of automated home cage monitoring systems that are in use, or being developed, and how they have been used in behavioral analysis will be reviewed. We will also evaluate the needs, the realized benefits, and the practical outcomes of continuous home cage monitoring for behavioral outcomes in the research community. The audience should appreciate an awareness of the degrees of improvement in animal welfare with use of these systems. Comparisons will be made between the quality of the automated scientific data generated when compared to traditional methods. The two primary methods of home cage monitoring are video capture and/or electromagnetic filed (EMF) perturbations. This seminar focuses on the EMF perturbations as the newest emerging technology, but comparisons with use of video imaging will be demonstrated. The types of behavioral testing presented will include anxiety-related behavior testing, cogitation and welfare outcomes, analysis of male mouse aggression in association with environmental enrichment options, monitoring of preference behaviors with different caging opportunities, and adverse clinical predictability based on movement patterns when using a neurodegenerative mouse model. Speakers will address how can these systems may affect the directions and the future of the behavorial research studies, as well as addressing the audience questions. This seminar is for technicians, managers, veterinarians, and administrators who wish to understand home cage monitoring and the tangible benefits of automated home cage monitoring for the animals, the science, and the care staff.


8:00 John J Hasenau Welcome and Introductions
8:10 John J Hasenau Overview of Current Home Cage Continuous Automated Monitoring Systems and Behavioral Assays
8:35 Jim Wallace EMF Home Cage Monitoring and Anxiety-Related Behavior Testing, Cognition and Welfare Outcomes in Two Strains of Laboratory Mice
9:00 Jareca Giles Efficacy of a Non-Mobile Elevated Form of Environmental Enrichment on Home-Cage Male Mouse Aggression Using Two Inbred strains and a Continuous Automated Home-Cage Monitoring System
9:30 Brun Ulfhake  EMF Home Cage Monitoring of Behaviors in Selected Strains of Mice
10:00 All  Discussion

Sex, Blood, and Babies: Animal Models of Zika Virus Research
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom D
Leader: John A Vanchiere
Moderator: David E Bentzel
Facilitator: Wendy R Williams

Zika virus is a re-emerging infectious disease that has recently gained notoriety as it spread from South to North America leaving in its wake babies with microcephaly. The mosquito-borne disease has also been shown to be transmitted through sexual contact, complicating control. In response to this international health emergency, scientists are working to develop effective animal models of Zika infection to evaluate potential prevention and treatment strategies. This seminar will review the epidemiology, clinical manifestations, and molecular virology of the Zika virus epidemic and will present several animal models currently being used by researchers. The target audience is all meeting attendees. Upon completion of this presentation, participants will understand the public health significance of Zika virus as an emerging pathogen, recognize the deficits in our understanding of Zika virus pathogenesis, and appreciate the necessity for development of animal models of Zika virus infection and disease for understanding pathogenesis and testing of prevention and treatment strategies.


8:00 David E Bentzel  Welcome and Introduction
8:10 John A Vanchiere  Epidemiology and Clinical Manifestations of Zika Virus Infection in Humans and Use of a New World Primate Model
8:30 Sasha R Azar  The A129 Mouse Model of Zika Virus Infection: Initial Characterization and Subsequent Applications
8:50 John M Thomas  Evaluation of the Laboratory Opossum as a Model for Zika Virus
9:10 Daniel N Streblow  Rhesus Macaque Model of Zika Virus Infection and Disease
9:30 James F Papin  The Olive Baboon: A Translational Model for the Study of Zika Virus Biology and Pathogenesis

This Seminar is sponsored in part by American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine (ACLAM) and the American Society of Laboratory Animal Practitioners (ASLAP).

Special Topic Lectures

Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning in Healthcare
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 18B
Speaker: J Ross Mitchell
Moderator: Naomi M Gades
Facilitator: TBN

The field of artificial intelligence (AI) is over 60 years old. Recent advances in computational power and biologically inspired artificial neural networks have enabled dramatic breakthroughs. Machines are now able to quickly learn solutions to complex problems previously reserved for human experts. The resulting applications are beginning to transform our lives and societies. AI will also revolutionize healthcare. This presentation will provide a high-level introduction to machine learning. It will describe the recent breakthroughs and some of the applications transforming our everyday lives. Then it will provide an intuitive glimpse into the inner workings of artificial neural networks to reveal the strengths and limitations of this technology. Next, it will focus on new and emerging applications in healthcare, with an emphasis on medical imaging. It will present several medical imaging machine-learning projects underway at Mayo Clinic. Finally, it will look ahead to predict future developments and potential impacts.

Charles River Ethics and Animal Welfare Lecture: Risks of Bias in Animal Research and What to Do About Them
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom D
Speaker: Malcolm Macleod
Moderator: Guy B Mulder
Facilitator: TBN

The potential rewards from a successful in vivo research project – to the scientist, the institution, or the company – are huge. For most involved in such activity, success is determined by surrogate measures such as publications, grants received, or progression of the research idea to clinical trial. Few have their success measured against the public health impact of any resulting treatment. In seeking to understand the reasons for observed translational failures, we have established that many reports of in vivo research do not describe measures which, if taken, would substantially reduce risks of bias; and, that studies which do report such measures give significantly smaller estimates of treatment effects. This holds for research regardless of disease area, academic setting, or journal of publication. Further, the approach to study design and analysis is often less than optimal, with no prior specification of primary outcome or statistical analysis plan and misinterpretation of the meaning of p values. While there is some evidence for improvement in recent years, I will argue that there is a pressing need – on the grounds of both ethics and efficiency – to adopt a more systematic approach to research improvement. Attendees will learn the pivotal importance of experimental design and conduct in maximizing the benefit/harm balance for research using animals and will be introduced to strategies to improve research value which they may deploy in their own working environment.

This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by Charles River.

Wallace P Rowe Lecture
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom F
Speaker: TBN
Moderator: Lon V Kendall
Facilitator: TBN

Speaker and description will be available after the Award Selection Committee selects the Bhatt Award Recipient in July 2017.

This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by Committee for Laboratory Animal Training and Research (CLATR).

Tuesday Afternoon

Panel Discussions

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Euthanasia Revisited: Evaluating the Stress Response in Mice and Rats
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 12B
Leader/Moderator: Natalie Bratcher
Facilitator: Dana E Weir
Panelist: Michelle Creamer-Hente, Gregory Boivin, Debra Hickman

Euthanasia remains one of the most important aspects of laboratory animal care. One of the most common methods of euthanasia involves carbon dioxide gas. Euthanasia with carbon dioxide gas is acceptable with conditions according to the 2013 AVMA Guidelines for the Euthanasia of Animals. However, evidence of aversion and pain to carbon dioxide necessitates further refinement of the practice. The purpose of this panel is to review current information surrounding carbon dioxide euthanasia in laboratory rodents, as well as present new data assessing different carbon dioxide displacement rates and its effects on the stress response in mice and rats. In addition, data investigating alternative methods of euthanasia (e.g. isoflurane, ethanol) and how it compares to carbon dioxide will be presented. The target audience is anyone interested in learning about and discussing euthanasia, animal welfare refinement, those using euthanasia methods in rodents, scientists, technicians, veterinarians, IACUC members, and facility managers.

Defining Lifetime Use and Cumulative Endpoints for Research and Teaching Animals
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 19A
Leader: Shawn Petrik
Moderator: Patricia V Turner
Facilitator: TBN
Panelist: Elizabeth A Nunamaker, Shawn Petrik, Patricia V Turner

Humane endpoints for animal studies are refinements and are considered to be the earliest time at which an experimental animal’s pain or distress can be avoided or ended by taking actions such as providing euthanasia, relieving pain, or terminating the study. Not all scientific endpoints may require euthanasia of an animal. Thus, many animal ethics committees have adopted an alternative term to describe animal disposition when the scientific endpoint is reached, the experimental endpoint. An experimental endpoint in this context may include animal euthanasia or provision of analgesia, but could also include repurposing, study removal, or test article "holiday," designated rest periods between studies, retirement, or adoption. Along similar lines, cumulative endpoints might be considered for animals used in more than one protocol for an extended period of time (i.e., lifetime use) or in individual protocols that involve multiple procedures conducted over an extended period of time. In this panel discussion we will explore whether and how lifetime use and cumulative endpoints are being tracked and evaluated at different institutions and for which animal species by IACUCs. Participants will be provided the results of a 2017 CompMed survey on this topic, which generated >150 responses from a range of individuals working in research settings. Attendees will discuss the need for developing generic guidelines that could be tailored to different studies, as a continuing refinement effort. Target audience includes IACUC coordinators, veterinarians, supervisors, animal care personnel, IACUC members, and anyone with an interest in lifetime use and disposition of research and teaching animals.

Strategies for Mitigating the Effects of Privilege in Laboratory Animal Science
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 17B
Leader/Moderator: Michael K Fink
Facilitator: Angela P King-Herbert
Panelist: Craig L Franklin, William A Hill, Mildred M Randolph

As acts of intolerance escalate in scope and scale across the country, the advantages that privilege affords its beneficiaries are becoming increasingly clear. The diverse and varied backgrounds of laboratory animal science professionals are in direct conflict with the consequences of privilege afforded to cross sections of our field and may impart inequalities in advancement, authority, and standing between individuals. Privilege is a pervasive social structure that confers advantages and unearned benefits to individuals within specific social groups. Privilege is multifaceted, with individual forms of privilege (sex, age, race, sexual orientation, etc.) encompassing perceived or actual differences between individuals. Many individuals experience multiple forms of privilege simultaneously which act in concert to intensify those inherent advantages and benefits. Laboratory animal science is not immune to the far-reaching effects of privilege that accompanies each of us and our colleagues across the threshold and into the workplace on a daily basis. We recognize that privilege exists in laboratory animal science. The next step is to develop and put into practice strategies and solutions that begin to dismantle this systematic form of oppression in our field. In this panel discussion, we will discuss with attendees in a safe and open forum institutional resources that can be leveraged to better mitigate privilege in the workplace. Panelists will also detail the results of a questionnaire disseminated to the laboratory animal science community which focused on acknowledging and responding to privilege. This panel discussion is appropriate for all meeting attendees and will encourage constructive conversation and audience participation. Attendees will discover that many of their peers are disadvantaged in ways not previously realized, that privilege should be taken into account when addressing efforts for positive change in the workplace, that institutional mechanisms and resources may be available to assist in confronting privilege in the workplace, and that open dialogue is necessary to identify and implement potential solutions to the effects of privilege in laboratory animal science.

Veterinary Technician Tricks of the Trade
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 16A
Leader/Moderator: Summer M Boyd
Facilitator: Chrystal L Montgomery
Panelist: Verda A Davis, Meri DuRand, Ricardo Fernandes, Stephanie Rideout

A panel of credentialed veterinary technicians will conduct an interactive session to share tips and tricks they have acquired while working in a variety of lab animal facilities. The panel will describe specific techniques that are not usually shared in literature, including their own “trade secrets” for procedures such as a pioneering technique of nonhuman primate anesthesia specifically while working with sensitive brain mapping equipment, tail vein catheterization of rats for imaging and lesion formation, and anesthesia and blind intubation of rabbits. Additionally, nonhuman primate behavior and its implications for improved animal welfare will be covered. This session is ideal for veterinary technicians and advanced lab animal technicians. Attendees will be encouraged to share their own tips and tricks with the group during the last portion of the session.

This Panel Discussion is sponsored in part by Society of Laboratory Animal Veterinary Technicians (SLAVT).


Adapting to Change in the Animal Research Oversight Environment
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 18B
Leader/Moderator: B Taylor Bennett
Facilitator: William S Stokes

In the 8th edition of the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, the authors offer a succinct description of the oversight of the care and use of animal models in biomedical research in the United States: “The use of laboratory animals is governed by an interrelated, dynamic system of regulations, policies, guidelines, and procedures." By definition a dynamic system is one that is always active or changing. There are many things that drive those changes and how an institution adapts to those changes in managing its animal care and use program (ACUP) can have a direct impact on its ability to assure its compliance and create an environment that facilitates the research program. This seminar will provide the attendees with an opportunity to hear from representatives of the USDA, OLAW, AAALAC, and NABR as it relates to recent changes, as well as other ongoing issues within their organization and to discuss with those representatives how their organization’s activities impact the environment in which we work and what changes to expect in the future. Questions for the speakers can be submitted to The target audience is those who need to keep current with the regulations and requirements for conducting animal-based biomedical research.


2:45 B Taylor Bennett  Welcome and Introductions
2:55 Robert Gibbens  USDA Update
3:15 Patricia Brown  OLAW Update
3:35 Kathryn Bayne  AAALAC Update
3:55 Michael Dingell  NABR Update
4:15 All  Questions and Answers

This Seminar is sponsored in part by National Association for Biomedical Research (NABR), USDA, APHIS Animal Care, National Institutes of Health (NIH), Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare (OLAW) and AAALAC International.

Challenges of Having an OLAW Compliant Program on the International Space Station
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom D
Leaders/Moderators: Terry Blasdel, Stephanie L Bassett
Facilitator: Jody Swain

The audience will be informed of the special challenges that NASA faces while trying to conduct animal research on the International Space Station. This topic will highlight the difficulties that are faced by having the laboratory in low earth orbit and while working without the benefit of gravity. The astronauts and cosmonauts are the animal technicians and their training is lengthy and detailed. The program is PHS assured, but the actual (ISS) laboratory cannot be inspected like ground-based programs on a semiannual basis. We will show the special housing and hardware that are designed to protect the animals and crewmembers who fly with them. Allergen testing of crewmembers is done for ground training and air samples are taken while mice are onboard the station to ensure that allergens are not being released into the closed ISS atmosphere. Veterinary care is provided for the animals via video downlinks and visual checks by crewmembers. Procedures are monitored in real time by scientists on the ground in our "mouse mission control." If permission is granted by NASA PAO, video of mice taken during past ISS missions will be shown, as well as other animal videos from past shuttle missions. Dr. Rick Linnehan will speak about his experience as an astronaut and working in microgravity and the challenges associated with rodents in that environment.


2:45 Stephanie Bassett  Welcome and Introductions
2:50 Thomas M Butler Veterinary Aspects of Caring for the Nonhuman Primates that Were the Stars of Early Space Flight Missions
3:20 Stephanie Bassett  Coaching the Crew: Higher Educationfor a Talented Team
3:50 Terry Blasdel The Gravity of Departures from the Guide: Assessing Performance Standards in Low Earth Orbit
4:20 Alex Dunlap  Lab Animal Hardware Validation for Ensuring Animal Welfare on the ISS
4:50 All Questions and Answers

The DIY App Revolution: One Program's Journey
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom F
Leaders: Ethan Hildebrand, Jason Jorgenson
Moderator: Ethan Hildebrand
Facilitator: TBN

Today's vivarium workplace involves interdependent processes with many moving parts and multiple personnel, distributed across many buildings. The nature of our work requires reliable completion of all tasks, including accurate documentation for regulatory purposes. Moreover, in these times of increasing costs and decreasing research funding, data-driven decisions for increased productivity are more important than ever. We recognized the need early on to make the work more efficient. That included a transition from paper forms to digital platforms for communication, record keeping, and analysis. That led us on a journey to implement software and hardware products designed specifically for lab animal programs. In that process, we had to contend with significant sunk costs, institutional assumptions and constraints, and our own lack of experience in software implementation. All of this led to missed deadlines and extended timelines. Seven years and over $1M later, we could link protocols, animal procurement, and census into an almost seamless package. But, we were using only 75% of available software functionality while other program needs remained unmet. We figured there had to be a better way. What we found is that we could adapt inexpensive apps and other generic software. We issued our staff with workplace-restricted iPhones and installed apps that we customized for our needs. Even software we use every day, like Microsoft Office®, could be leveraged for specific vivarium essentials. When we compared what we did using this approach versus what we had done previously, it was obvious that we could save a lot of time and money, with a more adaptable response to institutional assumptions and constraints. Meeting management's needs in smaller yet faster ways led to an increased appetite for newer and even more flexible applications to address newly identified needs. This seminar is intended for anyone who is interested in making the lab animal care workspace more efficient. We'll review our experiences and challenges associated with traditional software procurement and implementation, and offer cheap and simple alternatives that can be easily adapted by users for specific vivarium needs, all without the need to purchase expensive software or write customized code.


2:45 Ethan Hildebrand  Welcome and Introductions
2:50 Ethan Hildebrand  What We Learned When They Made Us Project Managers
3:00 Ethan Hildebrand  Why Spend $1M When You Could Spend $10,000 (or Less)
3:30 Mary Ann Crowley  The Apps We Use Everyday
4:00 Jason Jorgenson  So, How Much Time and Money Will It Save Us?
4:30 All  Discussion

This Seminar is sponsored in part by Harvard University Office of Animal Resources and Vivarium Operational Excellence Network.

Training for Success: Ensuring Your Training Program Is Helping Your Employees Succeed
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 9B
Leader: Michelle L Wallace-Fields
Moderator: Lorraine Bell
Facilitator: Bernard Hughes

Personnel are our most valuable investment. Ensuring that new hires are adequately trained and mentored can mean the difference between success and failure for both a program and an employee. This seminar is designed to walk attendees through the process of training new hires, from ensuring that they will have everything they need to get started, to how to track and manage refresher training for all employees. It will provide tools and examples, including new hire check sheets, how a program is developed, how a program can change over time, and how to transition an employee from the initial shadowing period to when they are a trusted and valued member of the team. Throughout the session, samples of training documents will be presented. The active roles that training staff play as a crucial part of the training process will be explained, as well as a demonstration on how a gradual increase of responsibilities and workload, with an eye toward early support and intervention, is very effective in retaining the new hire's focus and helping to improve their success and morale. This seminar will present ways to ensure new employees are knowledgeable from the moment of hire and how to keep them engaged and growing within the department, plus ways to develop tools to make sure that all necessary training is covered and documented, and recommendations on how to conduct and document follow-up and annual training. Finally, ways to assess training and solicit feedback in order to improve the training program will be discussed, including examples of adjustments that can be made based upon that information. This seminar is designed for anyone who supervises or trains employees or is working to move into management positions including supervisors, managers, and directors. Participants will learn how to develop, revise, refine, and document training for new hires and refresher training for existing employees.

2:45 Michelle L Wallace-Fields  Welcome and Introductions
2:50 Lorraine Bell  Identifying the Necessary Components and Organizing the Tools Needed for Your Training Program
3:10 Kim Schoonveld  Assembling the Pieces of Your Training Program: Making a List and Checking It Twice
3:30 Mindy M Yarbrough  Monitoring the New Hire's Progress: Ensuring Your New Employee Succeeds
3:50  Break
4:05 Holly Goold  Veterinary Technician Training: Developing the Technical Skills Necessary to Assist, Monitor, and Teach in the Research Setting
4:20 Michelle L Wallace-Fields Preventive Maintenance of Your Training Program: Your Program Changes, Is Your Training Program Keeping Pace?
4:35 All  Panel Discussion

Exhibit Hall Hours

  • Tuesday, October 17, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. 
Oct 18   

Wednesday Morning


W-13 Advanced Techniques in Gnotobiotics 
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 5A
Leader: Julia R Krout
Faculty: Stephanie Fowler, Christina M Olivares, Alton G Swennes, Betty R Theriault
Facilitator: Stephanie M Cormier
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

This workshop is designed to provide advanced technical perspective in gnotobiotics. Participants that possess a basic understanding of flexible film isolators, semi-rigid isolators, or bioexclusion ventilated rack systems will learn advanced techniques that are essential for long-term facility operation. These include isolator component replacement and repair, equipment maintenance, transfer and shipment of animals, the use of non-standard diets and supplies, colony management, and alternative housing methods. The workshop will feature hands-on work in a variety of equipment used in gnotobiotics. This workshop targets those who have a basic understanding of gnotobiotic animal husbandry and wish to learn advanced techniques that are essential for long-term facility operation. Also, the workshop will introduce attendees to the variety of equipment options available. Presenters will guide workshop attendees through the following advance technical procedures and provide perspective.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Allentown, Charles River, Class Biologically Clean, Taconic and Tecniplast.

W-14 Animal Facility, Design, Processes, Decisions, and Technology
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 4B
Leader: Mark A Corey
Faculty: Mark B Gold, Laura Halverson, Lauri Tyrrell, Katie L McGimpsey
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

This session will benefit those involved with animal facility design and operations by describing the process, decisions, and technologies involved in the design, construction, and management of animal facilities. The workshop will begin with a discussion of the facility design process, who should be involved, the objectives and level of effort by stakeholders, milestone decisions to be reached, and anticipated durations of the various phases of the process. Next, current trends in the industry will be explored through discussions about planning, interior construction, and finishes. Next, we will present a case study about creative facility solutions for housing large animals, including an open discussion comparing EU and AWA regulations for these kinds of facilities. Lastly, we will discuss mechanical, electrical, and piping design and operations. The discussion will focus on the risks associated with animal welfare, loss of research and facility resiliency, and how engineering decisions affect each of these parameters. These lessons learned will help enable participants to make more informed decisions as they develop and operate their own facilities. Finally, planning energy and resource efficient facilities is no longer a trend or an option, but rather an integral driver in facility planning. We will discuss sustainability strategies regarding energy and water that are being effectively implemented in animal facilities and the long-term benefits derived from each.

W-15 Innovative Ways to Incorporate Lean Tools and Concepts into Routine Facility Processes
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 7
Leader: Gerry M Cronin, Julieanne Brandolini
Faculty: Angie Heiser, Titilayo Lamidi, Amy Mikkola, Ashley Stamatis
Facilitator: Caroline R Warren
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

The Center for Comparative Medicine (CCM) at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) supports biomedical research across multiple campus locations and species. In an effort to build and support an innovative continuous improvement (CI) culture, we empower staff to find opportunities to improve processes. Increased effectiveness and efficiency, in turn, impact both staff and animal welfare in a positive way. CCM began a lean journey 12 years ago and in 2013, formed a Continuous Improvement Steering Committee (CISC) tasked with identifying gaps in the lean program. Due to the complex work environment we identified lean knowledge training as a challenge that affected our CI culture. Our countermeasure was to use interactive technology and adapt games to engage staff and foster our CI culture. In doing this, we have been able to integrate CI concepts into our daily animal care schedules rather than having to carve out time for lectures or workshops. To ensure that measurable improvements were made, surveys were distributed to staff before and after this initiative. Scores demonstrated a 19% increase in lean knowledge across the department, including a marked increase in scores attained by employees in their first 6 months. This indicated that we were successful in enhancing staff’s understanding of our CI concepts simultaneously with their animal care training rather than as an afterthought. Attendees will experience interactive teaching practices that make learning lean or any process fun. These exercises are easily accomplished as a team, in the work area, and in a short period of time. Topics to be addressed include, accelerating a CI program with a steering committee, developing rapid learning techniques, engaging staff and reinforcing team culture, and collecting metrics to show increased knowledge.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Comparative Medicine.

W-16 LAS Pro Article Writing Boot Camp
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 8B
Leaders: John Farrar, Liz Rozanski
Faculty: Chris Boehm, Andrew Burich, Bob Dauchy, Penny Devlin, Jamie McClellan, Elizabeth Nunamaker
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: Free Workshop Limit: 50

Laboratory Animal Science Professional (LAS Pro), the flagship AALAS publication, features articles highlighting the latest developments and strategies in our field, as well as technician tips and feature stories on the diverse professionals who work in our field. Do you want to be a part of your association’s magazine? Bring your concepts or an article outline and we will help you get started down the road to publication! The magazine’s Editorial Advisory Board will be on hand to offer encouragement and expert advice. The targeted audience for this workshop is any AALAS member looking to publish, particularly those who have not published previously. Participants are encouraged to bring their own laptops to the session.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by AALAS.


A Change in Climate Can Lead to a Better Safety Culture
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom F
Leader/Moderator: Larry J Shelton
Facilitator: Donna L Goldsteen

Laboratory animal research presents unique hazards pertaining to worker safety. Often, unsafe conditions are not discovered until an injury occurs and in most cases, the injury could have been prevented had someone informed the staff or safety team of an at-risk condition or a near miss. Most observations go unspoken due to fears of repercussions. In an effort to cultivate the safety climate in animal facilities and encourage proactive rather than reactive reporting, laboratory animal research (LAR) groups should partner with safety health and environment (SHE) groups to take a behavioral-based approach to safety. A primary focus is to measure the performance of culture, rather than the absence of injury. These partnerships focus on promoting safe behaviors within the working environment, increasing the reporting of near misses and at-risk conditions/behaviors, and encouraging employee participation in safety awareness while further evaluating technical and husbandry procedures. The initiatives are further encouraged through participation and transparency of management and by incorporating safety components into the overall goals of the LAR groups. The speakers on this panel will discuss how a behavioral-based approach to safety works in various LAR environments. We will discuss the successes in our own LAR programs following implementation of such a program. Target audience includes facility directors, facility managers, technical staff, and IACUC administrators.


8:00 Larry J Shelton  Welcome and Introductions
8:10 Jonathan Harris  Creating a Culture of Safety: A Behavior-Based Approach
8:30 Erin Straley  Behavioral-Based Safety: An Industry Perspective
8:50 Marisa St Claire  Behavioral-Based Safety: A BSL3/BSL4 Perspective
9:10 April Clayton The ABCs of Lab Animal Biosafety Risk Management: Attention to Human Behavior to Curb Risk and Enhance Animal Care
9:30 George W Lathrop, Jr  Behavioral-Based Safety: A Government Perspective

Corynebacterium bovis in Immunodeficient Rodent Colonies: Current Landscape in Detection, Routine Surveillance, Treatment, and Control Strategies 
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: 9B
Leader/Moderator: Nicolette A Zielinski Mozny
Facilitator: TBN

Corynebacterium bovis continues to have an impact on scientific programs working with severely immunodeficient rodent colonies. C. bovis is primarily associated with athymic nude mice but is an opportunistic pathogen of other immunocompromised strains such as haired SCID and NOD scid gamma mice. Pervasive contamination of the environment and common use equipment is known to perpetuate the infection and slow efforts to eliminate this pathogen. Increased scrutiny of biologics, such as tumor tissue, has recently been reported as a source of reintroduction of C. bovis. Traditional isolation by culture and the more recent PCR applications are important tools for C. bovisscreening. Correct sampling, sentinel programs, and biologics testing will impact the effectiveness of an exclusion and surveillance program. Once C. bovis is detected in your facility, discussions on how institutions work with this information to create informed program decisions for treatment and eventual eradication will be addressed. The participants will learn about current strategies to detect, treat, and control C. bovis from the perspective of an international diagnostic laboratory and three academic institutions. Overlapping stories will focus on surveillance programs and decontamination practices, as well as treatment and control. The target audience for this session is any academic or industrial institution working with immunodeficient rodents. This includes research scientists and the veterinary and husbandry teams involved in the operations of a vivarium.


8:00 Nicolette A Zielinski Mozny  Welcome and Introduction
8:10 Nicolette A Zielinski Mozny Corynebacterium bovis in Immunodeficient Rodent Colonies: Current Landscape in Detection, Routine Surveillance, Treatment, and Control Strategies
8:20 Kenneth S Henderson  Methods to Exclude and Monitor for Corynebacterium bovis
8:40 Chris A Manuel  Corynebacterium bovis Remediation: The Fight Is at the Room Level
9:00 Keely L Szilágyi  It’s a Hairy Situation: Maintaining Corynebacterium bovis-free Haired Immunocompromised Mice
9:20 Nicolette A Zielinski Mozny  Now You Have Corynebacterium bovis: What Are Your Next Steps?

Refining the Use of Laboratory Rodents: New Approaches to Improve Animal Welfare and Scientific Outcomes 
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: 18B
Leader: Mark J Prescott
Moderator: Samuel Brod
Facilitator: Emma Stokes

Rodents are by far the most commonly used animals in research. Techniques developed to improve the welfare of these animals can therefore have a large impact within the scientific community. Implementation of refinement opportunities is also important from a scientific perspective, because animals with compromised welfare have disturbed behavior and physiology, which can lead to unreliable conclusions and/or unwanted variation in scientific output, affecting the reliability and repeatability of experiments. Throughout 2017, the NC3Rs is highlighting new technologies and approaches for improving the welfare of mice and rats and for optimizing scientific outcomes, as part of our "year of laboratory rodent welfare." This seminar will present four such advances, developed with NC3Rs funding, ranging from a bespoke system for continuous 24/7 monitoring of the location and activity of individual rodents housed socially in the home cage, to refined methods of handling mice which reduce mouse anxiety and stress and improve performance on behavioral tests. A discussion session will allow for questions between the speakers and audience, and delegates will be provided with printed resources to help raise awareness of some of the refinement opportunities within their research facilities. We encourage scientists, veterinarians, and animal care staff to attend the seminar to learn about new opportunities to refine the use of laboratory mice and rats, and to expand their knowledge of the link between good animal welfare and good quality science.


8:00 Mark J Prescott  Welcome and Introduction
8:05 Sara E Wells  Automated Monitoring of Mouse Behavior in Social Home Cage Groups: What Happens When You Are Not Looking?
8:35 Jane Hurst  Optimizing Reliability of Mouse Performance in Behavioral Testing: The Major Role of Non-Aversive Handling
9:05 Michael Emerson  A New Mouse Model of Pulmonary Embolism: Major Refinement and Improved Clinical Relevance
9:35 Mark J Prescott  Opportunities for Improving Animal Welfare in Rodent Models of Epilepsy and Seizures
10:05 All  Discussion

Updates on Rodent Thermoregulation: Is It Hot In Here or Is It Just You?
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom D
Leader/Moderator: F Claire Hankenson
Facilitator: TBN

Comprehension of the mechanisms, influences, and outcomes of rodent thermoregulation is critical for both scientific, husbandry, and veterinary professionals to best promote animal wellbeing and care. The body of literature continues to evolve regarding the benefits and challenges related to diminished and elevated individual and environmental temperatures on laboratory rodents. Common murine behavioral and physiological adaptations to cold stress within the context of the modern vivarium will be described, with emphasis on ventilated cages, nesting material, and stocking density. Next, challenges and benefits of maintaining rodent temperatures, both in the conscious and anesthetized mouse, will be reviewed. The thermal physiology of laboratory rats will then be discussed, including autonomic and behavioral responses, with emphasis on restraint stress and caloric restriction. Finally, the seminar will emphasize the importance of documenting and describing aspects of environmental and experimental methods to bolster reproducibility and repeatability of rodent studies. The intended audience is scientists, veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and husbandry teams involved in the care and wellbeing of laboratory rodents.


8:00 F Claire Hankenson  Welcome and Introductions
8:10 John M David  Thermal Biology of Mice with Special Focus on Modern Vivaria
8:35 James O Marx  The Whys and Hows of Keeping Anesthetized Mice Warm
9:05 Christopher J Gordon  Thermal Physiology of the Laboratory Rat: Consequences of Stress
9:30 F Claire Hankenson  Reproducibility: Can You Repeat That?

Special Topic Lectures

A Proposal for Noise and Vibration Standards in the Lab Animal Vivarium
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 18B
Speaker: Jeremy G Turner
Moderator: Paige A Ebert
Facilitator: TBN

The Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (8th ed) mentions the problems of noise 39 times and vibration 28 times. The Guide effectively warns us (facility managers, technicians, veterinarians and PIs) that noise and vibration in the research animal facility space can serve as stressors for the lab animals and potential confounds for research using them. However, the Guide offers no hard information about what levels of noise and vibration are normal or acceptable in the vivarium, nor how/whether such variables should be measured, making it difficult for those of us charged with caring for lab animals to know whether their environments are safe. In this presentation, we propose a series of noise and vibration standards, based on the scientific literature and our experience with these measurements in the animal facility environment, that can be used as guidance for animal facilities until the Guide is able to address them directly. Our proposal suggests levels of noise and vibration that are to be avoided, as they are expected to be harmful to animals, as well as various strategies for mitigating noise and vibration problems if they are found. Our proposal also suggests best practices for planning, measurement, and monitoring for construction activities in and around the animal facility.

Caretaker Behavior as an Influence on Nonhuman Primate (NHP) Welfare
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom D
Speaker: Kate C Baker
Moderator: Maggie S Behnke
Facilitator: TBN

The role of NHP caretakers in behavioral management programs has expanded since the early 2000s. A larger proportion of facilities now involve caretakers in areas such as positive human interaction, positive reinforcement training (PRT), implementation of interventions for animals displaying abnormal behavior, and monitoring of social introductions. This is true even in large facilities, which are more likely to employ behavioral management departments and staff. This exciting development illustrates the increased integration of behavioral care into overall animal care. Caretakers are in a unique position to influence welfare. First, caretakers observe NHPs in different contexts from other employees, which may be pivotal for evaluating welfare and making decisions. For example, observations of social behavior during feeding are necessary for evaluating compatibility. Caretakers can also evaluate how well individuals respond to routine stressors. The success of a change in behavioral management may not be evident under quiet conditions, but may manifest in the contexts in which carestaff observe animals. Second, particularly for singly housed animals, caretakers are important outlets for expression of social behavior. Last, caretakers may engage in positive activities, such as feeding and providing enrichment, as well as those that could cause anxiety or distress (e.g. restraint, administration of injections). Amount of time exposed to caretakers and the mixed nature of caretaker activities suggest that optimizing caretakers’ behavior and interaction with the animals under their care should receive attention. Educating carestaff in PRT may introduce important principles into the management of NHPs. A number of steps are recommended to increase carestaff involvement, such as including welfare activities in job descriptions and performance reviews. Additionally, carestaff require significant training to perform these roles, including recognition of species-appropriate and abnormal behavior. This lecture aims to inspire managers, carestaff, and behavioral management departments to recognize that a well-trained team of caretakers can support strong behavioral management programs, and that both facilities and their NHPs will benefit from an expanded view of the nature of care and scope of the primate caretaker position.

This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine (ACLAM)/American Society of Laboratory Animal Practitioners (ASLAP) Program Committee.

Creating a Security Culture
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 9B
Speaker: John J Sancenito
Moderator: Rachel R Strittmatter
Facilitator: TBN

This presentation will discuss how creating a security culture within a research organization can create a safer environment for employees, visitors, animals, property, and data. Physical security measures and security protocols are useless if they are not followed, yet employees regularly bypass or ignore them. Most security vulnerabilities are created by accident or ignorance, not malice. This allows for an organization to change these behaviors by incorporating security practices into daily routines. The following steps to creating a security culture will be discussed: effective security awareness training programs; communication and reinforcement of security concepts; embedding security principles into practices, policies, and procedures; empowering employees; and management support of security. The attendee will have a better understanding of crime prevention techniques, behaviors that put them and their organization at risk, social engineering/fraud scams, and things they can do to protect themselves, their families, and their workplaces.

Nathan E Brewer Lecture
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom F
Speaker: TBN
Moderator: Cammie M Symonowicz
Facilitator: TBN

Speaker and description will be available after the Award Selection Committee selects the Nathan Brewer Recipient in July 2017.

This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by AALAS Awards Selection Committee (ASC).

Wednesday Afternoon

Panel Discussions

Continuous Improvements and Innovations in Laboratory Animal Welfare 
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 12B
Leader: Letty V Medina
Moderator: Kelsey A Lin
Facilitator: Donna J Strasburg
Panelist: Carey M Allen, Brian J Ebert, Chris L Medina, Letty V Medina

AbbVie is committed to providing the highest quality of care to our research animals. To accomplish this, we work hard to maintain high standards of animal care and use, and we continuously look for innovative ways to improve our programs. Our Comparative Medicine department includes husbandry/operations, veterinary services, and research/surgical services groups. These groups work closely to support all animal research staff and collaborate often with the Global Animal Welfare team, including the Alternatives Committee, to adopt enhancements to our animal care and use program. Participants will learn about a variety of innovative management and care practices that enhance laboratory animal welfare. These practices include examples of enrichment and operant conditioning, husbandry improvements, management tools to support better animal care oversight, as well as a practical way to highlight progress in adoption of the 3Rs. The panelists will emphasize how these various efforts were implemented primarily through the inventive ideas of the staff who are dedicated to a continuous improvement process. Developing a culture of continuous improvement ensures we are making steady progress rather than sliding backwards. These ongoing efforts to imagine, invent, improve, and inspire better animal care create a culture of continuous improvement that is both rewarding and optimal to maintaining a high quality animal care program.

This Panel Discussion is sponsored in part by AbbVie, Inc.

Preparing the Next Generation of Laboratory Animal Veterinarians: Strategies and Challenges in ACLAM-Recognized Training Programs
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 19A
Leader/Moderator: Julie Watson
Facilitator: Kinta J Diven
Panelist: Richard E Fish, Megan H Nowland, Peter C Smith, Douglas K Taylor

The 48 ACLAM-recognized residency training programs in laboratory animal medicine are incredibly varied in size, structure, and types of clinical, didactic, and research experience offered. Participants in this panel discussion represent a cross-section of available programs. They will discuss how they approach meeting required training program standards and describe facets of their programs that work particularly well, as well as those that present challenges. Topics to be discussed include what kind of candidates are a good fit, methods of recruitment, provisions of acclimation/orientation and individual or peer mentoring, degree of resident supervision/independence, program length and structure, communication issues, how research and pathology experience is provided, and whether the program provides help with writing CVs and finding jobs. Participants will also discuss the impact of T32 funded research training on LAM programs, and the desirability of incorporating specific training in business management, supervisory skills, and manuscript writing into their programs. Last, we will discuss whether faculty who participate in training programs should have specific training in curriculum design and student assessment. This discussion will be of interest to everyone in the LAM community and should be helpful in generating ideas to improve training programs.

The Internet of Things in Laboratory Animal Operations
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 17B
Leader: Pam A Straeter
Moderator: Melissa A Hostrander
Facilitator: Joanne C Drew
Panelist: Susie Chow, Kevin Gift, John J Sancenito, Pam A Straeter

The “Internet of Things," according to Webopedia, is defined as a network of physical objects with internet connectivity that communicate with each other and other internet-enabled systems. In the age where technology and smart devices intersect and enhance our personal lives, the world of laboratory animal operations has followed suit. With equipment RFID, security webcams, remote environmental monitoring systems, and so much more, the convenience of being connected 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, one has to wonder how far is too far? As the technology is refined and advanced, these systems continue to take control over our surroundings so much so that we may lose some ability to secure the information. Where is our industry’s vulnerability as we continue to embrace technology that will assist us in controlling and organizing our operations? In this panel discussion, we will explore the advantages and risks that internet-enabled systems present and provide participating laboratory animal management personnel the opportunity to examine and discuss the exposed spaces needed to balance operational effectiveness and efficiencies while ensuring security and safeguarding valuable animals and research.

What's in Your Facility? Consideration of Extrinsic Environmental Factors to Improve and Inspire Reproducibility in Animal Research
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 16A
Leader/Moderator: Malgorzata Klosek
Facilitator: Stephanie Murphy
Panelist: Cory Brayton, Samuel Cartner, Robert Dauchy, Bonnie Hylander, Randal Voss

There is concern within the animal research community that extrinsic environmental factors, like lighting, temperature, caging, and housing-related issues affect study outcomes. The full biological ramifications of such factors are not well understood, but there is growing recognition that to accurately describe any experimental set up, it is necessary to provide information about the environmental conditions in which an animal was generated, raised, and housed. This panel will address current knowledge and practices regarding monitoring of extrinsic environmental factors, accounting for them in the experimental design, identifying their influences on research results, and sharing such information with other researchers to enhance reproducibility in animal research. Panelists include researchers, editors, editorial board members, veterinarians, resource directors, lab managers, and health scientist administrators. The panel will engage members of the laboratory animal science community to share their views on priorities on addressing these issues, particularly with regards to specific animal species, scientific thematic areas, experimental approaches, and the most dominant extrinsic environmental factors. Participants will learn about the current practices and existing tools on how to collect, summarize, and share extrinsic environmental data; the need for community-derived guidelines on environmental data collection, extraction, and sharing in connection to best practices for animal facility management; experimental study conduct; interpretation and application of research findings; and the challenges associated with community consensus on data content and formats, and wider acceptance and use of such guidelines, including a unified content of such data in publications. The target audience includes all individuals engaged in research involving animal models, including animal facility managers; lab animal and research technicians; veterinarians; IACUC members; scientists from academia, industry, and government; and editors, reviewers, and authors.


W-17 Achieving Cultural Competency in Global Laboratory Animal Science
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 5A
Leaders/Faculty: Tiffany L Whitcomb, LaTesa J Hughes
Facilitator: Jodi A Scholz
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

Modern information technology capabilities, increased availability of international travel, and recent drives for global harmonization of research practices make interfacing among researchers and animal care and use personnel of diverse cultural backgrounds more likely and more feasible than ever before. While diversity is critical for an institution’s ability to innovate and adapt in a fast-changing environment, it presents a unique challenge to achieve standards in animal research and care. Foremost of these challenges is the language and communication barrier that can lead to misunderstandings, ineffectiveness of training and education, and noncompliance issues. Other examples include religious beliefs and cultural and societal mores that can challenge a personnel’s ability to perform necessary job duties. This workshop aims to help participants gain a different perspective and achieve competency in global laboratory animal science by actively engaging them in various activities. The session will open with an exercise that challenges participants to critically evaluate common myths and facts in recent publications. Another activity involves a language-learning exercise to promote cultural empathy and understanding. Participants will also have opportunities to explore common workplace challenges rooted in differences in culture through small group discussion. Valuable resources for learning about other cultures and languages will be shared. The workshop is appropriate for all attendees, including veterinarians, IACUC members, compliance and training officers, animal care staff, and human resource personnel. By the end of the session participants will be able to challenge their beliefs about diversity in the workplace by exploring common myths and facts in recent publications, build on empathy generated during a language-learning exercise to refine skills for working with personnel when a language barrier exists, connect their prior experiences in the workplace to common personnel interactions described in situational vignettes, and apply key cultural competencies to predict improved personnel management strategies as a result of discussing vignettes.

W-18 Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Planning: Does Your Facility Plan Harmonize with the Local, State, and Federal Responses to an Emergency or Disaster?
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 8B
Leaders: William G Greer and Ron E Banks
Faculty: Carol L Clarke, William G Greer, Jeanie Lin, Julie Marshall, Anne McCann, Erin Ribka, Gordon S Roble
Facilitator: William G Greer
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

The IACUC Administrator’s Association (IAA) facilitates opportunities for IACUC professionals to share successful processes and ideas, especially through best practice meetings to discuss emerging problems, and works collaboratively with the USDA, OLAW, and AAALAC. The purpose of this panel meeting is to begin the discussion on non-regulatory best practices for emergency management and disaster planning for research facilities in the context of harmonization with the local, state, and federal response to adverse events. This program will be based on a model already established by U.S. zoos that was facilitated through the USDA. The goal would be to begin the process for establishing a similar resource for the animal research community. The target audience is everyone involved in the animal care and use community. Every member of the community is responsible for health and wellbeing of research and teaching animals. This topic will give each the opportunity to learn about disaster planning and provide input from their point of view and based on their specialty.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by USDA and the IACUC Administrators Association.

W-19 Introduction to Acupuncture in Laboratory Animal Medicine
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 7
Leader: Harvey E Ramirez
Faculty: Alan G Brady, Stephanie J Buchl, Patty Chen, Elizabeth R Magden
Facilitator: Jennifer L Asher
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 25

Acupuncture is an ancient therapeutic technique that involves the insertion of sterile needles into defined sites on the body in order to stimulate physiologic balance through neural signaling. It is one of the most recognized and scientifically validated complementary modalities used in veterinary medicine, and its use has dramatically broadened the scope of what should be considered high-standard veterinary care. The research supporting the use of acupuncture demands that laboratory animal veterinarians cultivate a progressive mindset regarding alternative and complementary treatment modalities and their implementation in laboratory animal care. In this workshop, participants will receive a historical perspective of acupuncture and traditional Chinese veterinary medicine, be provided with an indepth understanding of the neurobiological and neurophysiological mechanism of acupuncture treatment, learn to locate the most commonly used acupuncture points in laboratory animal medicine, learn basic techniques used when placing needles, and learn indications and contraindications for dry needling, aquapuncture, and electro-acupuncture. The target audience includes veterinarians with an interest in learning acupuncture with the goal of integrating it into their clinical care of laboratory animals.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Chi Institute of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine.

W-20 Teaching Monkeys to Cooperate with Restraint: Using Positive Reinforcement Training and Temperament Testing Methods
(8-hour workshop continued on Thursday 8:00 AM)
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 10B
Leader: Jaine E Perlman
Faculty: Mollie A Bloomsmith, Kris Coleman, Jennifer L McMillan
Facilitator: Mark J Prescott
Workshop Fee: $250 Workshop Limit: 50

The workshop includes 8-hours of instruction using positive reinforcement training (PRT) to teach monkeys to cooperate with various restraint procedures, as well provide information about using temperament testing to assist in selection of subjects and planning for their training. Participants will learn approaches to training laboratory primates to cooperate with restraint for sample collection (e.g., blood, vaginal fluids) and administration (e.g., injections) and for chair restraint. PRT is an important refinement in the care of nonhuman primates and an effective means of improving their welfare. However, animals respond differently to restraint, and measuring temperament provides insight into how individuals might respond to these procedures, allowing for individualized and more effective training plans. Goals include introducing participants to animal training terminology and techniques; teaching PRT techniques as they apply to restraint procedures, such as the use of the cage squeeze back mechanism and chair restraint; and teaching methods to assess and quantify temperament in monkeys and to use this information to develop individualized training plans. Participants will also learn to incorporate alternative techniques, such as negative reinforcement to meet research timelines. Participants will learn how to shape behavior and apply desensitization techniques, how to maintain trained behaviors over time, and how to transfer trained behaviors among multiple staff members. Participants will learn how temperament can impact training approaches and the anticipated timelines for training to cooperate with restraint. Understanding the intersection of individual differences in temperament and animal training will aid in the design of more efficient animal training programs. This workshop is designed for those experienced in working with primates, including behavior specialists, animal caregivers, research technicians, animal managers, veterinarians, and investigators.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Hybex Innovations, Lomir Biomedical Inc., NC3Rs, and Unifab Corporation.

W-21 The Art of the Perfect Presentation
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 8C
Leader: Christal Huber
Faculty: William Singleton
Facilitator: Temeri Wilder-Kofie
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

Giving a great presentation is no simple accomplishment. It takes time and a lot of effort to learn how to give good presentations. Perfection is a relative term, yet we all attempt to improve our delivery with each presentation. Often the anxiety associated with public speaking is significant enough to negate any amount of preparation. It’s been said that people in general, fear public speaking over any other fear. In this session we will look at some critical factors to help your presentation be as perfect as possible while eliminating some of the associated anxiety. Special emphasis will be place on the power of practice and the importance of preparation. Opportunity will be provided in this session to learn how to practice. We will discuss the impact of finding the right mode for delivering content, whether that is commonly used power points or incorporating the use of handouts and audience participation. More and more research is confirming the use of active learning strategies to maximize engagement and learning. The idea that people learn best when lectured to is just no longer true. This session will introduce various active learning strategies that can be incorporated into a 15 minute presentation or a 4 hour workshop. And finally we will provide metrics to help you know if your presentations meet your intended objectives. At the conclusion of the session, attendees will have a better understanding of how to use the tools and skills necessary to deliver a memorable and great presentation. This session will be ideal for any one that wants to improve their public speaking skills. From the novice to the experience speaker, this session will introduce tools, activities and ideas anyone will be able to practice and perfect to deliver perfect presentations.


Challenges and Opportunities in Support of Interinstitutional Collaborations: Are You Prepared?
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 9B
Leader: Betty R Theriault
Moderator: Nicolette A Zielinski Mozny
Facilitator: Christina M Olivares

The interdisciplinary landscape of 21st century biomedical research is presenting new challenges for the laboratory animal community in support of intra and inter-institutional collaborations. Such collaborations arise not only from synergistic relationships resulting from intellectual collaborations, but also through the desire to transform individual research programs beyond the scope of what a given institution may have resources or capacity to support. Many institutions have developed scientific and/or medical centers and institutes of excellence by assembling top researchers and physicians in specialized areas of expertise. In doing so, highly specialized as well as costly technology may be acquired to support these local, regional, or national centers of excellence which may not be readily available more broadly due to limited financial resources or individualized expertise in a given field. To capitalize on these limited technical and intellectual resources, many researchers are extending the scope of their programs to include interinstitutional collaborations which may encompass academia to academia, academia to industry, or visiting scientist arrangements to achieve their scientific goals. In this seminar, we will explore examples of inter-institutional collaborations and discuss some of the many critical components necessary for their success. Participants will learn the current climate pressures which are fostering inter-institutional collaboration interests. Regulatory requirements and considerations for institutions, IACUCs, and individuals engaged in collaborative studies will be outlined and discussed. Consideration of regulations, animal and colony health status, timing, and the practical procedures for sharing animal model resources will be summarized. The seminar is directed to research scientists, veterinarians, program directors, operations specialists, shipping coordinators, IACUC members, compliance officers, and program administrators.


2:45 Betty R Theriault Welcome and Introduction
3:00 Betty R Theriault Animal Model Collaborations:  Considerations in Facilitating Resource Sharing
3:20 Nicolette A Zielinski Mozny  Grant Based Collaborations: How Does Your Institution Collaborate?
3:50 Marcy A Brown  Outsourcing Studies: Managing Risk while Advancing Research
4:20 Ann Schue  Import/Export Considerations for Collaborative Studies between Institutions

Emerging and Re-Emerging Infectious Agents of Laboratory Rodents 
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom D
Leader/Moderator: Robert S (Bob) Livingston
Facilitator: Kayla Johnson

Infectious diseases have been emerging and re-emerging since the beginning of time. In laboratory animal facilities, emerging and re-emerging infectious agents present an ongoing threat. With the increase in the use of immunocompromised animal models, we have seen the emergence of several previously unrecognized pathogens. In this seminar, information about two newly recognized rodent pathogens will be presented: rat polyomavirus 2 (RPyV2) and a novel Corynebacterium species. Presentations will describe disease manifestations, identification and characterization of the pathogens, diagnosis, prevalence, and elimination of the organism. And, as if we didn’t have enough to worry about, there has been a recent outbreak of Seoul virus in pet rats that has raised concerns as to the potential for this virus to re-emerge in our animal facilities. The last presentation will discuss CDC’s investigation of the Seoul virus outbreak and the resulting human infections. The target audience is laboratory animal veterinarians, facility managers, study directors, and technical specialists who manage animal health programs. The goal of the seminar is to heighten awareness of newly recognized infectious diseases that affect immunocompromised rodent models commonly used for cancer and transplant organ investigations.


2:45 Robert S Livingston  Welcome and Introduction
2:55 Cynthia L Besch-Williford  Identification and Characterization of Rat Polyomavirus 2
3:25 Megan L Lambert  Impact of Rat Polyomavirus 2 Infection on a Rat Breeding Colony
3:35 Joseph T Newsome  Rederivation to Eliminate the Rat Polyomavirus 2 Infection and Potential Impact on Research
4:00 Marcus J Crim  A Novel Corynebacterium Species Infecting Immunodeficient Mice
4:20 Matthew H Myles  Update on the Recent Outbreak of Seoul Virus in Pet Rats
4:40 Robert S Livingston  Summary

Staffing and Working in a High-Containment Environment 
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom F
Leader: George W Lathrop
Moderator: Rex Howard
Facilitator: Patrick O Mills

Performing animal research within high containment laboratories presents unique challenges for facility managers, PIs, veterinary staff, and animal caretakers. Speakers will present a general overview of the challenges that working within a high containment facility (HCL) entails, along with a framework for evaluating whether pursuing the construction of a HCL is economically feasible. Optimizing facility resources, managing equitable allocations, achieving education compliance, managing training efforts, and assuring adequate learning exposures will also be discussed. The regulatory requirements for work with USDA-covered species will be introduced, along with the ADDIE (Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation, Evaluation) model of instructional program design. After this seminar, participants will be able to estimate and evaluate the costs associated with staffing and operating a high containment laboratory, develop protocols to train staff and investigators in high containment work, select animals for use within high containment labs, and return to their facility with the tools necessary to design a mock HCL for personnel training. This discussion will be valuable to attendees with a variety of backgrounds, including veterinarians, behavioral specialists, veterinary technicians, facility managers, and animal care providers.


2:45 Rex Howard  Welcome and Introduction
2:55 Cassandra M Tansey  Animal Selection for High Containment Work
3:15 Sarah Genzer  Return on Investment in High Containment Laboratories
3:45 April Clayton  Planning and Developing a Mock HCL
4:05 Brianna Skinner  Steps in Developing Training Protocols

Tools for Developing a Stimulating and Cooperative Environment for Laboratory Minipigs 
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 18B
Leader: Nicole Navratil
Moderator: Kirsten R Jacobsen, Michelle L Salerno
Facilitator: Pam Huber

The complexity of swine cognition should not be underestimated in the laboratory. When developing behavioral management and husbandry procedures for laboratory minipigs, it is important to remember that minipigs are highly intelligent with a unique perspective about their environment. This intelligence can cause a challenge to providing stimulating environments, but it can also provide a benefit as minipigs can be trained to participate in study procedures. This seminar will review ways in which minipigs may experience their environment, how to evaluate and mitigate stress, as well as ways to help enhance environmental stimulation. This seminar is valuable for technicians, veterinarians, and managers who work directly with minipigs in their laboratory facilities.


2:45 Nicole Navratil  Welcome and Introductions
2:50 Kirsten R Jacobsen  Introduction to Swine Behavioral Management
3:15 Carolyn M Allen  Providing Cognitively Stimulating Enrichment for Laboratory Swine
3:40 Felipe Berard  Evaluation of Stress and Acclimation to New Environments, Procedures, or Equipment
4:05 Michelle L Salerno  Mutual Cooperation and Training Minipigs for Blood Collection and Other Procedures

This Seminar is sponsored in part by Marshall BioResources and Ellegaard Gottingen Minipigs.

Exhibit Hall Hours:

  • Wednesday, October 18, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Oct 19   

Thursday Morning


W-20 Teaching Monkeys to Cooperate with Restraint: Using Positive Reinforcement Training and Temperament Testing Methods 
(8-hour workshop continued from Wednesday 1:00 PM) 
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 10B
Leader: Jaine E Perlman
Faculty: Mollie A Bloomsmith, Kris Coleman, Jennifer L McMillan
Facilitator: Mark J Prescott
See Wednesday 1:00 PM for workshop description.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Hybex Innovations, Lomir Biomedical Inc., NC3Rs, and Unifab Corporation.


Innovations in Zebrafish Policies, Husbandry, and Veterinary Care 
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom F
Leader/Moderator: Monte Matthews 
Facilitator: TBN

The zebrafish (Brachydanio rerio) is an important model animal widely used in basic and biomedical research. The expanding scope and scale of zebrafish science demands a more innovated and sophisticated approach to the development and advancement of the institution’s program for the management of institutional policies, husbandry, and veterinary care. We will provide examples from multiple perspectives on successful programs that manage the husbandry and veterinary care of zebrafish facilities. We will discuss improvements in institutional policies and responsibilities for oversight of husbandry and veterinary care management. We will discuss innovations in animal environment, housing, and management and their impact on veterinary care. We will describe the intertwined husbandry and veterinary care components such as standard husbandry practice development (including environmental enrichment), sources of zebrafish, transportation, quarantine, health monitoring and sentinel programs, anesthesia, analgesia, and euthanasia. We will describe common diseases found in zebrafish and improvements for their treatment and control. Finally, we will discuss the advantages, limitations, and integration of improved environmental monitoring and ante mortem samples for zebrafish quarantine and colony health monitoring.


8:00 Monte Matthews Welcome and Introduction
8:15 Monte Matthews Developing Imaginative Institutional Policies for Zebrafish
8:35 Christian Lawrence Innovation and Reproducibility of Zebrafish Husbandry Practices
8:55 Kathy Snell Basic Improvements in Zebrafish Veterinary Care Programs
9:15 Michael L Kent Improvements in Detection of Common Diseases of Zebrafish
9:35 Marcus J Crim Innovations in Health Monitoring

Integrative Physiology for Improved Translation 
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: 9B
Leaders: Szczepan W Baran, Brian R Berridge, Natalie A Bratcher
Moderator: Szczepan W Baran
Facilitator: Marcel I Perret-Gentil

There is a growing debate about the usefulness of animal studies in biomedical research and drug development. Some of the challenges in translation from animals to human patients may be from weaknesses in how we conduct those studies. Technological advancements are providing opportunities to expand the data we collect from animals and improve alignment to clinical data and data management. Areas of potential 3Rs impact include environmental monitoring and controls, physiological monitoring, behavioral monitoring, and assessments and data management. Technologies are providing innovative approaches to determining optimal housing conditions, improved animal study reproducibility, physiologic and translationally relevant data collection, and ability to iteratively learn from studies in perpetuity. The overall impact of these capabilities when integrated in meaningful ways could reduce animal use, reduce pain and discomfort, and improve clinical predictivity. The target audience includes those interested in learning about how various technological advances are enabling 3Rs impact through improved reproducibility, physiologic, and translationally relevant data including scientists, technicians, veterinarians, IACUC members, or facility managers.


8:00 Szczepan W Baran Welcome and Introduction
8:05 Szczepan W Baran Emerging and Enabling Technologies with 3Rs Impact
8:15 Brian Berridge

Technology-Enabled Comparative Pathophysiology: Strengthening Our Line of Sight to the Patient

8:40 Natalie A Bratcher Improved Decision Making Using an Innovative, Non-Invasive Approach to Modeling Chronic Disease to Early Safety Signals in Rodents
9:05 Joseph P Garner Leveraging Animal Behavior in Equipment Design: Be as a Reed in the Wind, Not An Engineer with a One-Tool Toolkit
9:30 Paul Makidon Application of Imaging Technologies and Reverse Translation in Rodents for Improved Modeling and Decision Making
9:55 Szczepan W Baran Discussion

This Seminar is sponsored in part by North American 3Rs Collaborative (NA3RsC) and Innovation and Quality Consortium 3Rs Leadership Group (IQ 3RsLG).

Research Validity and Reproducibility: Everyday Challenges 
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom D
Leader/Moderator: Julie Watson
Facilitator: Alicia Braxton

Lack of reproducibility in research has been a topic of widespread discussion in recent years. Not surprisingly there is considerable concern when public money is invested in research that cannot be duplicated or that fails to translate into successful therapies. As veterinarians, we are in a unique position to consider the whole animal and its environment in relation to the research questions being asked, and are often called upon to troubleshoot when research doesn’t go according to plan. We will use a case-based approach to describe environmental variables that can affect research. Examples from mice and nonhuman primates will demonstrate the effect of husbandry factors such as feed, water, caging and noise; background strain effects such as blindness, deafness, and immune variation; effects of microbial status and medical interventions; and variation due to social stress, abnormal behavior, personality type, and intelligence. This seminar will be of interest to all those that are involved in biomedical research using animals, including researchers, veterinarians, and husbandry staff.


8:00 Julie Watson Welcome and Introduction
8:05 Cory Brayton Mouse and Microbial Contributors to Research Variability
8:50 Eric Hutchinson Weird Things Animals Do and How They Affect Your Research
9:25 Julie Watson How Husbandry Procedures, Infections, and Veterinary Therapies Can Affect Research
9:20 Erin S Lee Cavy Out of the Box: Adaptations of Guinea Pig Care in an ABSL-3 Study
9:45 Jori Leszczynski Questions and Discussion

Use of Dedicated IVC-Based Solutions for Gnotobiotic Mouse Studies: Validation and Operational Optimization 
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: 18B
Leader: Stephanie W Fowler, Patrick R Hardy
Moderator: Brian Bilecki
Facilitator: Scott Hoy

A growing population of researchers is interested in increasing their facility's capacity for gnotobiotic studies, or is interested in participating in gnotobiotic research but have little experience. Conducting gnotobiotic studies which require comparing different groups of microbiota is cumbersome or even impossible when isolators are the only housing option available. Housing single-study groups in isolators can be difficult due to limited isolator availability, the need to house gnotoxenic groups separately, room capacity, and cost limitations. Constraints combined with the booming interest for microbiota-related studies require a more innovative approach to housing gnotobiotic rodents. Specifically designed positive-pressure IVC units have been developed as a solution to many of these challenges. Upon implementation it is apparent that the specialized IVCs are not a plug-and-play solution, and success relies upon a cooperative review and customization of laboratory SOPs with educated consultants. Information gained from recent studies conducted with this new generation of dedicated equipment will be reviewed. Critical issues include project and local constraints analysis, integration of gnotobiology activity in the existing facilities, associating working cabinet and a suitable transfer systems and sterilization practices to the dedicated caging system, defining technical options, validation of microbiota/germ-free status/control of microbiota over maintenance over time, dealing with all operational practicalities, and adequate project optimization. Attendees will learn advantages and disadvantages of current gnotobiotic housing methods, how to implement newer housing solutions, and adjusting SOPs to greatly increase study volume in their existing facility, demonstrated by real-world implementations of newer housing methodologies. This presentation is targeted toward the growing population of researchers interested in increasing their facility's capacity for gnotobiotic studies, as well as researchers who are interested in participating in gnotobiotic research but have little experience.


8:00 Stephanie C Fowler Welcome and Introductions
8:15 Stephanie W Fowler Optimizing Cage Change and Handling Procedures in Germ-Free Mice when Using Sealed IVC Housing
8:55 Patrick R Hardy From Feasibility Studies to Operational Optimization: A Focus on Key Issues
9:35 Brian Bilecki Use of Dedicated IVC-Based Solutions for Gnotobiotic Mouse Studies: Validation and Operational Optimization

Special Topic Lectures 

Anesthetic Management for Laparoscopic and Thoracoscopic Procedures in Laboratory Animals 
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom F
Speaker: Dave Daunt
Moderator: Misty J Williams
Facilitator: TBN

Recently there have been dramatic increases in the number and complexity of minimally invasive surgical procedures in humans. Accordingly, more complex and challenging laparoscopic and thoracoscopic procedures and physician training activities have increased in laboratory animals. This lecture will cover the unique problems and complications associated with the anesthetic management for laparoscopic and thoracoscopic procedures. Methods to monitor and support physiologic functions will be covered in detail. Topics will include the unique physiologic challenges associated with insufflation of the abdomen and thorax. Common complications associated with laparoscopic and thoracoscopic surgery will be discussed. Understanding these principles will provide the basis for appropriate patient support, prevention, and treatment of these complications. Several methods of one-lung ventilation will also be presented for thoracoscopic procedures. This talk is targeted to veterinarians and veterinary technicians working in surgical laboratories that use laboratory animals for laparoscopic and thoracoscopic procedure development and physician training.

Effective Training Throughout Application of Learning Theories 
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom D
Speaker: Lisa M Kelly
Moderator: Natasha J Melfi
Facilitator: TBN

Constructive-developmental theory, proposed by famed Harvard developmental psychologist Robert Kegan, asserts that adults develop their own individualized perception of reality and that this perception is continuously evolving throughout their lifepan. This theory was further expanded to include "orders of conciousness" that are believed to directly impact a person's epistemology, or way of knowing. Based on these theories, adults are often expected to handle situations or issues that are beyond the capacity of their mental development. The difference between this expectation and capacity can result in stress and create barriers to learning. This session will explain constructive-developmental theory and propose ways in which trainers can quickly evaluate the orders of conciousness of their learners in order to create an optional environment for the learner to receive and retain new information. The session will explore theoretical ideas on why learners are often resistant to change and how trainers and those in leadership positions can help them throught tough transitions. It will also explore the necessary components for transformational leadership and learning that can successfully influence culture change. The session is ideal for anyone that would like to develop a deeper understanding of the psychology behind adult learning and ways in which theoretical principles can be applied to create effective training programs or sessions.

National Bio and Agrodefense Facility (NBAF): Confronting Global Threats 
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 9B
Speaker: Ron W Trewyn
Moderator: Maggie S Behnke
Facilitator: TBN

The National Bio and Agrodefense Facility (NBAF) is a next-generation biocontainment laboratory currently under construction on the campus of Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas. Built and operated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the mission of the NBAF is to protect U.S. livestock from foreign animal diseases (FADs), safeguard public health and food animal health, and preserve America’s food supply and agricultural economy. FADs on the NBAF research agenda include both animal-only and zoonotic biothreats such as African swine fever, foot and mouth disease, Rift Valley fever, and Ebola virus (BSL-4). Once operational, this BSL-3/BSL-3Ag/BSL-4 facility will replace the obsolete Plum Island Animal Disease Center and it will host the USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) as the primary research and diagnostic tenants. Government, industry, and university FAD collaborations are already growing in Manhattan while NBAF is under construction. Participants will learn the significance and current status of NBAF, how the Kansas State University campus was chosen for this location, and the reasons why former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle recently called Kansas State University and the area around NBAF “the Silicon Valley for biodefense.” The target audience includes technicians, veterinarians, researchers, biocontainment specialists, and anyone interested in biosecurity, biothreats, or foreign animal diseases.

This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine (ACLAM)/American Society of Laboratory Animal Practitioners (ASLAP) Program Committee.

Using Advanced Modeling and Simulation to Improve Efficiencies in Laboratory Animal Research Facilities 
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 18B
Speakers: Kevin Chriswell, Niranjan S Kulkarni
Moderator: Wayne DeSantis
Facilitator: TBN

The presentation will highlight the advantages of using operations improvement modeling, lean design concepts, and animation to enhance the operations and efficiencies in laboratory animal research (LAR) facility design. Through the addition of simulation and animation, the audience will see the benefits of virtual four dimensional analysis and demonstrations of operations within a LAR facility. Combined with building information modeling, the audience will see how operations improvement modeling can enhance mechanical systems design, energy analysis, CFD analysis, and commissioning and validation efforts. The audience will see the benefits of incorporating operations improvement modeling to enhance the design and improve efficiencies of LAR facilities. The target audience includes research institution and corporate laboratory animal facility administrators, vivarium managers, principal investigators, and research grant facilitators.
This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by CRB.

Thursday Afternoon

Panel Discussions 

Biosafety in the Use of Human-Derived Substances in Animal Research 
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 19A
Leader/Moderator: Jason S Villano
Facilitator: Jatinder Gulani
Panelist: Stephen Felt, Todd A Jackson, Vanessa B Jensen, Cheryl Perkins, Jason S Villano

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration’s Bloodborne Pathogens standard (29 CFR 1910.1030) prescribes safeguards to protect workers against the health hazards caused by bloodborne pathogens. The standard places requirements on employers whose workers can be reasonably anticipated to contact blood or other potentially infectious materials. This has direct impact on the administration of human-derived substances (HDS) such as cell lines and patient-derived xenografts to animals. This panel will review biosafety concerns related to the use of HDS in animal research, the requirements and expectations of regulatory and accrediting bodies, and approaches, including risk assessment, made by representative institutions in addressing biosafety. Main discussion points will include appropriate containment animal housing and other additional safety procedures. This panel discussion is appropriate for all attendees, including animal care and use program directors, veterinarians, IACUC members, compliance and biosafety officers, and animal care staff.

Getting a Positive Result in a Sentinel Mouse: What to Do after the Diagnosis 
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 12B
Leader/Moderator: James O Marx
Facilitator: Kristin L Gardiner
Panelist: Susan R Compton, James O Marx, Abigail Smith

Laboratory animal medicine has devoted a great deal of time and resources to the detection of adventitial organisms in mouse biomedical research facilities. This is important for both the production of high-quality research results and animal welfare. But the detection of the organism is only the first step. Ultimately, eradication of the agent and prevention of future outbreaks is required. Our group recently performed a survey of 63 institutions and found that there is a great deal of variation between institutions in the steps following the identification of an organism. This open, interactive discussion will cover the next steps in the eradication process, including confirmation of an outbreak, isolation procedures, treatment, and confirmation of complete eradication. A series of guided discussions of scenarios will be discussed with the audience, addressing the response to viral, bacterial, and parasitic outbreaks diagnosed by serology, PCR, and/or microscopic examination. Our goal is to provide information to the audience about options in addressing outbreaks of adventitial agents in mouse vivaria. The target audience is individuals involved in quality assurance programs, veterinarians, including laboratory animal medicine residents, and individuals involved in mouse husbandry.

Managing Risk Associated with Outsourcing Animal Work through Effective Diligence 
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 17B
Leader/Moderator: Linda K Fritz
Facilitator: TBN
Panelist: Natalie A Bratcher, Wendy J Underwood, Gina P Wilkerson

Pharmaceutical companies routinely place animal work at contract research organizations (CROs), universities, biotech companies, and governmental organizations. This work may involve collaborative research projects, single-study contracts, or master service agreements. A number of risks should be considered when placing work at a third party. Items to consider include risks associated with the animal work, including the care and welfare program at the contract or collaborative institution, and study-related risks associated with the work. This panel will share their risk mitigation strategies including diligence prior to work being placed and the following oversight plans. The learning objectives of the panel are to understand the risks associated with various types of externalized contracts or collaborations, to share diligence strategies for evaluations, to consider third-party animal welfare care and use programs, to study related risks, to discuss strategies for ongoing monitoring and site visits, to share IT solutions for managing assessment of outsourced work and collection of metrics, and to discuss the impact of pharma expectations on the third parties with the participants. Target audience includes contract or scientific staff responsible for placing animal work, third-party personnel responsible for compliance with pharma expectations, and those interested in risk management.

Scheduling Models and the Implementation of a Task-Driven Staff Assignment 
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 16A
Leader: Tasha M Thomas
Moderator: Ann L Murray
Facilitator: TBN
Panelist: David W Brammer, Tasha M Thomas, Yehia Wafa

In order to maximize productivity and operate efficiently, there should be a clear course of action on staff responsibilities and specific work duties for each team member. However, effective planning is time consuming and complex when considering the wide variety of activities and the proper resources necessary to support them. This includes materials, functioning equipment, and staff. In addition, the work becomes more complex when considering the live animals and the varied species staff may be required to work with. The implementation of a sound schedule impacts the work flow, staff satisfaction, and overall success of your laboratory animal research program. The presenters will provide an overview of several scheduling models and ways to optimize work efficiency through staff scheduling. The presenters will also provide an overview of the pros and cons of implementation, and a specific review of a task-driven scheduling model. In addition, special emphasis will be given to the task-oriented scheduling model and how it is used at two lean management facilities. The panel discussion will cover an introduction to lean management principles and discuss how lean management can be used in staff scheduling. The panel discussion will also include an overview of the room assignment scheduling model, the team captain area approach scheduling model and the task-oriented scheduling model. The panel discussion will allow participants to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each system and the methods of implementing each system.

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