IACUC Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


When is my protocol or amendment due to the IACUC?

Paperwork should be submitted by the 1st of the month that you would like it reviewed. Paperwork received late cannot be guaranteed to be included in that month’s IACUC meeting.

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Can I extend my expiration date if I’ve forgotten to submit my protocol for its 3 year review?

No. Protocols have a firm expiration date that cannot be extended. If you continue research beyond this date, it is a reportable offense to the Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare and you will likely face an official inquiry from the IACUC that may further impact your ability to continue work.

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Why do protocol reviews take so long?

A review that goes to full committee review will take at least one month, because it is due at the 1st of the month and the IACUC meets on the 3rd Thursday of the month. Delays in communication between the PI and the IACUC often further prolong the time until approval.

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What is the fastest turnaround for a protocol or amendment?

If a protocol or amendment goes to Designated Review (a decision made by the Chair) the committee has 5 business days to respond. Any item in DR can go to full committee review which will put it back into the regular timeline for protocol review.

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I cannot get the protocol forms to save properly, what is wrong?

You must use a copy of Adobe Professional to work with these forms. It is available through the OIT software purchasing link. http://www.oit.umd.edu/slic/

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Why is the IACUC questioning the scientific merit of my research?

The IACUC is required to ensure that all animal use is the best use of animals to achieve the expected result. The IACUC does not question the merit of your research, but the use of animals within it. The IACUC is charged to make sure that all research complies with the 3 R’s (reduction, replacement, and refinement).

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I am a student using tissues – do I need a protocol?

If the tissues are generated at another institution and being sent to you at UMD, no. If you are collecting the tissues yourself and bringing them back to UMD, yes. The only exception to this rule is primate tissues. All work involving primate tissue must have a protocol at UMD.

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I am a collaborator at another institution that is using animals – do I need a protocol?

Only if you or your students will be participating at the other institution. If that is the case, please provide a copy of the approved protocol to the UMD IACUC.

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I am a student – why can’t I be the PI?

The IACUC requires an employee of the university to be the PI.

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I’m concerned about the use of an animal – what do I do?

a. Please contact the IACUC as soon as possible. Concerns can be addressed directly to the IACUC Office or through iacuc@umd.edu (this is a reflector that the IACUC Chair and the VP of Research will receive). There is no such thing as a silly concern or a stupid question regarding animals. The IACUC investigates all concerns as serious concerns regarding the animal care and use program.

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