Administration of Biohazards to Animals

The administration of biohazards to animals requires careful coordination among the research staff, Laboratory Animal Resources and EHS. The Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC)/Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) policy "Work with Biohazards in Princeton University Laboratory Animal Research Facilities" (see RIA Animal Use and Care) describes the responsibilities and containment practices for working safely with infected animals.

The Biosafety Manual contains a summary of Animal Biosafety Levels 1 and 2.

Administering Human-Derived Materials to Research Animals

The Institutional Biological Safety Committee (IBC) policy entitled “Biosafety Containment for Animals Exposed to Human-Derived Material” (see IBC Policies and Guidelines) establishes biocontainment for research involving administration of human-derived materials to animals. Administration of human-derived material to animals must be conducted at Animal Biosafety Level (ABSL) 2. Human tissues and cells have the potential to harbor infectious agents. Testing may not identify all pathogens of concern.

Containment required for housing of animals exposed to human-derived materials may be downgraded to ABSL 1 based upon an evaluation of the following information:

  • Availability of screening results showing that the specific sample to be used in animals is free of known bloodborne pathogens.
    § Note: The LAR Attending Veterinarian and the Biological Safety Officer (BSO) will provide recommendations for the frequency of human cell line testing on a case by case basis.
  • Presence of other infectious agents in the animal.
  • Likelihood that bloodborne pathogens may be shed in urine or feces.
  • Nature of the cell line.
  • Nature of the genetic insert.
  • Animal’s immune status.


Meagan Fitzpatrick, Biosafety Officer