Research Advantage

Standard operating procedures and animal wellbeing phenotype reports

Standard Operating Procedures

Appropriate use of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) as part of the animal ethics approval process may facilitate the preparation of applications by researchers and teachers.

The Australian Code of Practice for the Care and Use of Animals for Scientific Purposes (enacted in NSW legislation under the Animal Research Regulation) outlines concerns that there is a risk that the use of SOPs may reduce the rigour with which procedures are considered by the Animal Care and Ethics Committee (ACEC).

Clause 2.2.17 of the Australian Code therefore stipulates that SOPs should only be referred to in ACEC applications under the following circumstances:

  • New SOPs must be approved by the ACEC before implementation.
  • SOPs must include in the title the date on which they were last approved or reviewed and be reviewed regularly by the ACEC at least every three years.
  • ACEC members must have ready access to copies of all current SOPs.
  • Researchers or teachers named on a proposal must have the necessary skills to implement a SOP.
  • Variations to a SOP must be detailed in the application to the ACEC.

For further information please see the following:

If you are unable to access any of the SOPs please contact an Animal Ethics Officer.

Animal Wellbeing Phenotype Reports

The standards for the welfare of genetically modified and cloned animals and the special ethical and welfare issues related to the creation and use of genetically modified and cloned animals are outlined in the Guidelines for the generation, breeding, care and use of genetically modified and cloned animals for scientific purposes issued by the NHMRC's Animal Welfare Committee in addition to the Australian code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes.

Genetically modified and cloned animals may have specific welfare needs that will continue throughout their lifespan and into subsequent generations.

The Animal Care and Ethics Committee (ACEC) will consider projects for which the generation or use of genetically modified and cloned animals has been justified on the basis of the predicted benefits of the research and the impact on the wellbeing of the animals.

Researchers seeking to alter an animal's genetic make-up for research purposes are required to complete an Attachment I and an Animal Wellbeing Phenotype Report for consideration by the ACEC. Upon approval by the ACEC these Phenotype reports can be referenced in other applications to the ACEC by researchers who plan to use these genetically modified animals in their own projects.  Note:  A project specific Attachment I must be submitted with all applications using GM animals.

These reports are available for review on the following pages ordered by genetic background strain and 'nickname'.

For further information please see the following pages: