University receives highest accreditation standard for care of lab animals

11/5/2007 8:00:00 AM

The University has received full accreditation from the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Care International (AAALAC), considered one of the most important internationally known recognitions a research institution can receive.

AAALAC International is a private, nonprofit organization that promotes the humane treatment of animals in science through voluntary accreditation and assessment programs. More than 730 companies, universities, hospitals, government agencies and other research institutions in 30 countries, in demonstrating their commitment to responsible animal care and use, have received the honor.

"It's a significant statement that our program is at the gold standard of animal care," said Roger Van Andel, director of laboratory animal medicine at the University. Van Andel led the University's accreditation effort. "It shows we are operating at the level seen in all of the best research institutions."

In addition to the University, some of the institutions that have earned AAALAC accreditation include Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, St. Jude's Children Research Hospital, the American Red Cross and the National Institutes of Health.

"I am delighted about this milestone for our institution," said Mark Brenner, the University's vice president for research. "Most significant research institutions in the country reach this level of accreditation. It speaks well of the commitment our University has for the care of our laboratory animals, and as well, sets a standard that all of our researchers on campus work every day to achieve.

"Roger Van Andel and his staff have done an outstanding job during the accreditation process, and should be recognized for the thorough and time-intensive work that proved our worthiness for full accreditation."

Van Andel said that now that Nevada has achieved full accreditation, the institution will undergo a re-accreditation process every three years. During that process, Nevada will be asked to produce a report on its progress in meeting re-accreditation goals, and will host a site visit re-accreditation team of national animal laboratory care experts.


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