Transport of laboratory animals - FELASA-AALAS WG
In the last decades, due to the development of genetically-altered animals and to the globalization of research programs, there is an increase of exchange of laboratory animals. It includes the transport between specialized breeders and research institutions, between research groups, and also in the context of multi-site projects.
Supply chain is a critical step, and any means (road, sea, air) of transport should be in custody. Laboratory animals move from one controlled and monitored area to another one via one or several companies. As an example, when air transport from 3rd countries is achieved, it is not unusual that four or five companies are involved between the breeding colony and the research center, and that three or four pieces of regulations are referred. Nevertheless, thanks to the professionals involved, very few incidents are reported.
Although the transport of animals is highly regulated, there are differences between American and European countries, and even within EU, and with other parts of the world. Those are complex regulations and not dedicated to laboratory animals. In some cases, the regulation is not appropriate to laboratory animals.
This joint FELASA-AALAS working group aimed to set up recommendations related to good transport practices, considering all kind of transportation (road, sea, air). Intra-institution transport was excluded of the tasks.
The WG is now closed, the WG did not produce recommendations.