WEDNESDAY MORNING

WORKSHOPS


W-11 Introduction to GI Endoscopy in Laboratory Animals
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 345
Leader: Eric K Hutchinson, Kelly A Rice
Faculty: Patrick McElwee, Karl Storz, Joshua A Kramer, Tom L Thomas
Facilitator: Jodi A Scholz
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 20

This workshop is targeted towards laboratory animal veterinarians with a large animal focus. Flexible GI endoscopy represents an important diagnostic and research support tool for the practicing laboratory veterinarian. It is a specialized skill, but provides a virtually pain-free, minimally invasive approach to evaluating GI health and obtaining tissue samples for definitive diagnosis. As researchers continue to pursue treatments and vaccines for HIV-related disease in nonhuman primate models, the laboratory veterinarian is increasingly called upon to assist with experimental endoscopic biopsies. Further, nonspecific gastrointestinal signs are not an uncommon presentation for large laboratory animals with spontaneous disease. This introductory workshop aims to provide a foundation for laboratory veterinarians with a focus on endoscopic equipment, diagnosis, and integration of flexible endoscopy in the laboratory setting. Techniques for nasopharyngoscopy, esophacoscopy, gastroscopy, enteroscopy, colonoscopy, and tissue biopsy therein will be discussed. This half-day workshop will consist of lecture- and video-based learning and discussion followed by a hands-on laboratory to familiarize participants with the endoscopy equipment and allow for technical instruction and practice using nonanimal teaching models.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Karl Storz Endoscopy and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine Research Animal Resources.


W-12 LAS Pro Article Writing Boot Camp
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 348
Leaders: John Farrar, Liz Rozanski
Faculty: Bob Dauchy, Elizabeth Nunamaker, Penny Devlin, Jamie Naden, Robin Tucker
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: free Workshop Limit: 50

Laboratory Animal Science Professional (LAS Pro), the flagship AALAS publication, features articles highlighting the latest developments and strategies in management, professional development, occupational health and safety, as well as technician tips and feature stories on the diverse professionals who work in our field. Do you want to be a part of your association’s magazine? Bring your concepts or an article outline and we will help you get started down the road to publication! The magazine’s Editorial Advisory Board will be on hand to offer encouragement and expert advice. The targeted audience for this workshop is any AALAS member looking to publish, particularly those who have not published previously. Participants are encouraged to bring their own laptops to the session. This is a free workshop and limited to 50 participants.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS).


W-13 Successful Operation of a Gnotobiotic Facility
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 349
Leaders: Betty R Theriault, Alton G Swennes, Stephanie Fowler, Jessica K Lang, Carrie Murczek
Faculty: Stephanie W Fowler, Jessica K Lang, Carrie Murczek, Alton G Swennes
Facilitator: Julia Krout
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

This workshop is designed to provide guidance to those in the early stages of developing a gnotobiotics facility. The workshop will provide background on facility design and requirements, sterilization techniques and their limitations, and the effective use of common equipment. Discussion will focus on the use of flexible film isolators (sterilization cylinder packing and port entry), use of semi-rigid isolators and positive-pressure sealed IVC systems, including key procedural aspects that enable the maintenance of germ-free or gnotobiotic animals. Participants will gain perspective from workshop faculty that have developed research investigator facilities and large academic centrally managed programs. The targeted audience includes managers, veterinarians, research scientists, and program administrators. The workshop will introduce attendees to the variety of equipment options available and the current standards in the field of gnotobiology.

This Workshop is sponsored in part by Allentown, CBC, Charles River, ENVIGO, Taconic, and Tecniplast.


W-14 Understanding the Roles of Animal Care and Facility Design Staffs in Planning a Research Animal Facility
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: 346
Leader: Robert E Nalls
Faculty: Jeffrey M Polo, Bruce A Scharf
Facilitator: Misty J Williams-Fritz
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

The complexity of requirements for facilities supporting animal models for research is a direct result of their scientific necessity, biosecurity, and sophistication of techniques. This session reviews the challenges faced by both animal care staff and the design team in supporting the planning and construction of a research animal facility. Topics include regulatory standards, space allocations, as well as architectural, engineering, and operational requirements. Case studies will be used to illustrate some of the challenges and opportunities from several recent projects. Despite the fact that animal care is directly impacted by the design and detailing of facilities, animal care staff often gain an understanding of the design process and performance criteria only through the “battlefield experience” of being thrust into participation in a construction project, or by struggling to effectively operate a poorly planned or obsolete facility. This team-taught workshop by a laboratory animal program director, a laboratory architect, and a science facility engineer will endeavor to give animal care staff the tools to effectively identify needs in their current facility or to be more effective in the planning and construction process for a new or renovated facility. Concepts will be aimed at facilitating their role in supporting the planning, design, and construction effort. This workshop will illustrate the appropriate role of animal care staff in the facility planning process and their impact on facility design. Planning and functional issues, as well as approaches to solving them, will be presented from both an animal care and facility design perspective. The planning/design/construction process as well as tools that can be used will be illustrated and distributed. Anticipated attendees include institutional representatives who are involved with the operation or funding of animal facilities, particularly those who anticipate renovation or construction projects.

SEMINARS


Building an Inclusive Workforce in the Laboratory Animal Facility

8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom I
Leader/Moderator: Marilyn M Watson
Facilitator: Darin McNeill

Individuals with disabilities can provide staffing solutions to add diversity to laboratory animal facilities. People with disabilities are often an untapped market. In 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor statistics noted labor force participation rate for people with disabilities is 20.4% (68.4% for those w/o disabilities) and the unemployment rate for individuals with disabilities is 10.2% (4.7% for people w/o disabilities). Leveraging the strengths of each individual offers the unique opportunity to develop strategic advantages for the team to accelerate innovation, kindle problem solving, enhance productivity and job satisfaction, improve quality, and, most importantly, find better ways to meet needs within our animal facilities. In this seminar, attendees will hear multiple perspectives from employees in institutions that are building an inclusive workforce in the laboratory animal vivarium. The session will cover strategies that an institution or work unit can use to recruit and support individuals with disabilities. Participants will learn about Project SEARCH, which is a transition-to-work program for young people with intellectual and development disabilities, and how incorporation of this program has had positive impacts not only on the students but also on the vivarium staff. An animal care technician, who is a person with autism, will provide her experience working in a vivarium. This perspective forms a better understanding of neurodiversity and how to build bridges across your work units. A discussion of how facilities can support individuals with sensory disabilities will also be provided, including how an institution has successfully incorporated an interpreter system to facilitate communication amongst a staff where a high proportion are deaf or hearing impaired, as well as steps that can be made to support individuals with visual disabilities. Studies have shown that inclusive work environments boost morale, productivity, and profitability. This session would be of interest to any individual interested in supporting an inclusive work environment.

Speakers/Topics:

8:00 Marilyn M Watson Welcome and Introductions
8:05 Dawn M Kirchner Diversity Recruitment
8:20 Douglas J Jazdzewski Integration of Project SEARCH into a Vivarium
8:50 Francie Dahlin Understanding Neurodiversity
9:20 Jennifer C Smith Working with Hearing Impaired Staff in a Lab Animal Program
9:50 Chandra D Williams Working with Individuals with Low Vision


Don't Just Survive: Nontechnical Skills to Thrive in Your Laboratory Animal Science Career
8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom II
Leader: Sharron M Kirchain
Moderator: Robin M Kramer
Facilitator: Mia T Lieberman

This seminar will explore several challenging issues in today’s workplace culture. The importance of women in leadership will be discussed in the context of the laboratory animal science industry, as will gender stereotypes, disparities in leadership and salary earnings, and what challenges exist for women in leadership roles. Elements of work-life balance will be explored, why it is important, what the obstacles are, and how to achieve it. Finally, we will look at workplace culture and how workplace assessment tools can help navigate it. Selected tools that may be helpful in the laboratory animal science setting will be reviewed. Live smartphone polling will be used to survey the audience and foster discussion points. Participants will learn non-technical job skills such as interacting with diverse groups/cultures in the workplace; awareness of gender bias and unconscious bias in society and work; how to approach issues of work and personal life to achieve both productivity and personal satisfaction; and information about several individual and team assessment tools to assist in fostering positive workplace culture. Men and women leaders, managers, and anyone interested in gender, diversity, workplace culture, or work-life balance should attend this seminar.

Speakers/Topics:

8:00 Robin M Kramer Welcome and Introduction: Background, Demographics, and Workplace Statistics
8:15 Stacy Pritt Challenges for Women in Leadership
8:45 Gary L Borkowski You Work Hard, Don’t Forget to Play Hard: Strategies for Achieving Work-life Balance
9:15 Sharron M Kirchain The Workplace Culture: How Workplace Skills Assessment Tools Can Help
9:45 Robin M Kramer Group Discussion with Live Smartphone Polling

Geriatric Mouse Medicine, Management, and Welfare

8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom III
Leader/Moderator: Kathy A Perdue
Facilitator: Sheba Edmonds

In recent years, greater emphasis has been placed on healthy aging due to the lengthening of the human lifespan. As a result, aged rodent models, particularly mice, have become increasingly prevalent in research facilities. Aged mice present a nuanced challenge for veterinary and husbandry staff as well as IACUC and research staff given their potential increased longevity and age-related physiology. This seminar will provide an overview of the current practices in caring for, managing, and incorporating aged mice into research studies. A brief historical perspective on the use of aged mice will initiate the discussion. Next, clinical assessment of aged mice and the challenges associated with their care and treatment will be considered. A discussion on behavioral assessment will provide further insight into biological change over the course of the lifespan. This will be followed by a discussion of IACUC involvement in studies using aged mice, namely estimating necessary animal numbers and the development of humane and experimental endpoints. The final speaker will address resources currently available to the research community for obtaining aged mice. The seminar will conclude with a discussion to allow audience questions and conversation about others’ experiences with these challenging models. We encourage scientists, veterinarians, facility management, and animal care staff to attend to discover and incorporate new insight into their programs using aged mouse models with the goal of providing better management and care for this unique rodent population.

Speakers/Topics:

8:00 Kathy A Perdue Introduction and Historical Perspectives
8:20 Theresa M Meade Clinical Assessment and Care of Aged Mice
8:45 Ross A McDevitt Behavioral Assessment
9:15 Heather D Smith IACUC Perspectives
9:30 Francesca Macchiarini Resources Available to the Aging Research Community
9:50 Kathy A Perdue Group Discussion

Understanding Public Policy Advocacy: A Primer for the Next Generation of Leadership

8:00 AM - 10:15 AM/Room: Ballroom IV
Leader: Laura A Conour
Moderator: Donna J Clemons
Facilitator: Logan France

The advocacy needs of the animal research community is changing rapidly. Groups opposing research have skillfully moved from campaigns focused on protests, infiltrations and, at times, criminal activity to vocally seeking to influence research operations through public policy and the court system. An increasing number of legislative initiatives are introduced each year that seek to impact and, in some instances, outright ban laboratory animal research. We are seeing more sophisticated approaches to hindering animal research by activist groups in city hall, the courts, and legislative bodies. The laboratory animal community has many dedicated, skilled public policy advocates; however, many of these individuals hold senior leadership positions and are nearing retirement. We must engage our next generation of laboratory animal professionals now to ensure the important role of animals in biomedical research continues to be heard by our public officials. The under 35 workforce has a demonstrable interest in public policy and a willingness to speak out on issues of importance that exceeds the level of prior generations. While all AALAS members who seek to engage in public policy advocacy will benefit from participation, this seminar will primarily empower our younger professionals to become passionate public policy advocates for biomedical research. The session will include an introduction to the legislative and regulatory process, an overview of the key public policy issues affecting biomedical research at the state and national levels, and case studies reviewing both successful and unsuccessful advocacy efforts. Careful attention will also be paid to ensuring advocacy efforts comport with institutional policies. Participants will learn about ways to be effective in meetings with public officials, how to develop an effective advocacy strategy and process, as well as review communications and advocacy tools to maximize outreach influence.

Speakers/Topics:

8:00 Laura A Conour Introduction and Welcome
8:15 Thomas Leach Laying the Groundwork: Public Policy Issues Affecting Biomedical Research Today—State-Level Issues
8:45 Matthew Bailey Laying the Groundwork: Public Policy Issues Affecting Biomedical Research Today—Federal Issues
9:15 James O'Reilly Demystifying and Making the Most of Constituent Meetings/Advocacy Process and Strategies: They Work For You
9:45 Anita T Richert Training Module for Young Professionals/Peers to Talk with Legislators


PLATFORM SESSIONS

8:00 AM-10:45 AM

Platform Session abstracts will be available on www.aalas.org in July. They will also be included in both the mobile app and the National Meeting Final Program.

SPECIAL TOPIC LECTURES


Climbing the Hill: Getting Involved in Biomedical Research Advocacy and Public Policy
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom IV
Speaker: Logan K France
Moderator: Dawn C Fitzhugh
Facilitator: Donna J Clemons

Animal rights activists are becoming increasingly involved in promoting legislation that would adversely impact or possibly halt animal research. Now more than ever, strong voices are needed from the biomedical research community to communicate the truth about animal care in research and combat the harmful agenda of activists that could negatively affect medical progress. Many members of research support teams, including veterinarians, laboratory animal technicians, and others do not appreciate the significant impact they can have on public policy. This session will provide an overview of the current legislative landscape regarding the use of animals in biomedical research, including recent legislation targeting animal research, and a preview of legislation likely to be proposed in the next session. Participants will learn the many ways to advocate for biomedical research and how they can influence public policy, from social media posts to writing a senator or providing personal testimony at a legislative hearing. Tips and tricks for effectively communicating your message and developing a compelling argument will be also discussed. While this session will focus on informing young professionals of the legislative process and how to break into the public policy scene, all attendees will gain a better understanding of current challenges and opportunities and ways in which their voice can be heard.

This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by AALAS Government Relations Committee (GRC).


Effective Teaching Strategies Through Consideration of Adult Cognitive Developmental Theories
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom III
Speaker: Lisa M Kelly
Moderator: Natasha J Melfi
Facilitator: TBN

Robert Kegan, famed Harvard developmental psychologist, proposed that adults develop their own individualized perception of reality and that this perception is continuously evolving throughout their lifespan. This constructive-developmental theory was further expanded to include “orders of consciousness” that Kegan believes directly impact a person’s epistemology, or way of knowing. Based on Kegan’s theories, adults are often expected to handle situations or issues that are beyond the capacity of their mental development. The difference between this expectation and capacity can result in stress and create barriers to learning. This session will explain Kegan’s theories and propose ways in which trainers can evaluate the orders of consciousness of their learners and can construct effective holding environments that facilitate mental capacity development. Increased capacity will allow learners to make the cognitive leaps necessary to handle challenging expectations. The session will explore theoretical ideas on why learners are often resistant to change and how trainers can help them through tough transitions. It will also explore the necessary components for transformational leadership and learning that can successfully influence culture change. The session is ideal for anyone that would like to develop a deeper understanding of the psychology behind adult learning and ways in which theoretical principles can be applied to create effective educational curricula.


Nathan E Brewer Lecture
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom I
Speaker: TBN
Moderator: Christopher T Southern
Facilitator: TBN

Speaker and description will be available after the Award Selection Committee selects the Nathan Brewer Award recipient. This session information will be available in the mobile app and in the Final Program.

This Special Topic Lecture is sponsored in part by AALAS Awards Selection Committee (ASC).


What Could Possibly Go Wrong? Everything You Never Wanted to Know about the Microbiome
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM/Room: Ballroom II
Speaker: Vanessa L Hale
Moderator: Thomas R Meier
Facilitator: TBN

The microbiome and its relationship to health and behavior are rapidly growing areas of research. Recent work in laboratory animals has demonstrated how unintentional alterations of the gut microbiota can dramatically and unexpectedly change host phenotype. Changes in bedding, caging, diet, cage location, and experimenter, amongst other variables, can alter gut microbial communities in lab animals, which can subsequently alter host metabolism, disease susceptibility, and behavior. Identical strains of mice from the same vendors or from different vendors can also exhibit significant differences in gut microbial diversity and composition, resulting in differing responses to the same stimuli or conditions. Careful consideration and monitoring of laboratory animal gut microbial communities can help establish more reproducible results. The goal of this presentation is to introduce the microbiome, its role in animal health, and highlight current studies focused on the microbial communities of laboratory animals. Participants will learn important factors to consider in designing experiments or maintaining laboratory animals involved in experiments. This session would be of interest to anyone working with laboratory animals including health and care technicians, veterinarians, researchers, and vivarium managers.

WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON

PANEL DISCUSSIONS


Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Planning
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 339
Leaders: William (Bill) G Greer and Ron E Banks
Moderator: William (Bill) G Greer
Facilitator: TBN
Panelist: Ron Banks, Carol L Clarke, Julie Marshall, Ann McCann, Evan Shukan, Catherine M Vogelweid

The session is a continuation of last year’s discussion on nonregulatory practices for emergency management and disaster planning for research facilities in the context of harmonization with the local, state, and federal response to adverse events. This session will further educate the community on topics that include elements of the Federal Emergency Response Plan, the existing model of best practices established by zoos, and recommendations from IACUC Administrator Association's (IAA) Best Practice meetings. A summary of the results and recommendations from a recently released report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, “Strengthening the Disaster Resilience of the Academic Biomedical Research Community: Protecting the Nation’s Investment” will also be presented. The report identifies common problems that occurred at research institutions during past disasters and proposes ideas that will increase resiliency to better protect institutions against future losses. Each member of the animal care and use research community is responsible for the health and well-being of animals used in research, testing, and teaching animals during emergencies, adverse events, and disasters. Our goal is to encourage open communication and dialog amongst peers and response partners to encourage the use of more inclusive planning approaches that will yield enhanced protection for research animals during adverse events and disasters.

This Panel Discussion is sponsored in part by The IACUC Administrators Association.


Supporting Researchers and Protecting Science: The Importance of Institutional Collaboration in Outreach Efforts
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 337
Leader: Jim Newman
Moderator: Jennifer L Asher
Facilitator: Paula A Clifford
Panelist: Jim Newman, Amy Puffenberger, Charles E (Chuck) Roselli

Proactive communication about the importance of animal research is essential in today’s environment where the need to increase public trust continues to grow. Partnerships between individuals leading outreach efforts, an institution’s communications office, and other offices and individuals within an organization are critical for many reasons. These include ensuring that activities align with institutional policies, making certain that messaging remains uniform across all the offices that communicate with the public, and guaranteeing that those conducting research are effectively supported. Communications-outreach partnerships are often some of the most critical relationships when seeking administrative buy-in for these initiatives. This session will advise participants on how to develop effective organizational relationships to build a strong outreach program that aligns with and informs other institutional communications efforts. Speakers include animal research communications experts, members of the laboratory animal research community working to build their institution’s outreach and advocacy efforts, and a researcher who has been the focus of an anti-animal research campaign who can talk about the benefits of increased transparency. Participants will learn answers to the following questions: Where is the best place to start an outreach program? Who do I need to partner with? Who needs to be at the table? What do I do when there are disagreements when forming a program? What should we do if outreach receives negative or unwanted attention? How should I respond to letters from students, activists, or other members of the public? The target audience is those involved in outreach, as well as all members of the animal care and use program and institutional administration and communications teams.

This Panel Discussion is sponsored in part by American College of Lab Animal Medicine/American Society of Laboratory Animal Practitioners Program Committee (ACLAM/ASLAP).

The Human Variable: Essential Consideration for Promoting Excellence in Animal Welfare

12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 341
Leader/Moderator: Andy Foster
Facilitator: TBN
Panelist: Genevieve Andrews-Kelly, Cassondra Bauer, Jenny Jones, Nikki Vilminot

As compassion fatigue becomes a growing concern within the laboratory animal research community, the need to promote compassion satisfaction as a preventative measure is imperative. In addition to ethical responsibilities, institutions need to acknowledge that increased interest is being given to baseline animal wellness in analyzing study data, and must, therefore, work to control human variables such as the factors that lead to the onset of compassion fatigue. An institutional culture of compassion satisfaction and effective emotional engagement can be promoted in a variety of ways. By acknowledging, learning, and embracing human psychosocial behavior, institutions will leverage strengths inherent in emotional behavior instead of reacting to them. Successful implementation of programs that manage compassion fatigue as well as promote compassion satisfaction contributes to keen awareness in animal caregiving, acute performance in study function activity, retention of experienced leadership, positive employee engagement, and overall job satisfaction. While efforts may vary, maintaining a commitment to facilitating a culture of emotional supportiveness and compassion satisfaction is paramount in ensuring that animal welfare remains every institution’s foremost priority. In exercising this commitment, several initiatives have proven to be beneficial in achieving this type of culture and can be implemented with minimal capital investment. Participants of this panel discussion will learn basic psychosocial tendencies essential when considering action; receive details on proven methods for supporting compassion satisfaction; gain tips for approaching management and executive leadership for program approval; engage in brainstorming sessions to find right-fit solutions for each participant’s institution; share ideas for implementation and buy-in; and make connections for long-term support and encouragement in building a successful program. The target audience is laboratory animal science technicians, managers, veterinarians, and organizations.

This Panel Discussion is sponsored in part by Charles River, ENVIGO and The University of Michigan.


Working Smarter, Not Harder: The Latest Management Tools Proven to Make Vivarium Operations Easier
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM/Room: 343
Leader: Jarrod Nichol
Moderator: Gerry M Cronin
Facilitator: TBN
Panelist: Ethan Hildebrand, Donna Jarrell, Sharron Kirchain, Tammy Williams

Vivaria around the world are finding it difficult to manage while continuously tasked with doing more with less, and avoiding the insidious “fake work” that creeps in every day. This interactive session will unlock the mysteries behind removing everyday problems facing our industry. Through the use of innovative tools and techniques developed to foster a culture of quality, speakers will offer invaluable information on the tools they are using to work smarter, not harder. Using the collective experience of several institutions, we will demonstrate a wide array of tools and concepts to help you overcome your daily struggles. As the industry moves ever closer into the digital age, combining breakthrough apps with readily available yet powerful tools and techniques will increase the velocity and understanding of information to facilitate better management decisions. Our panel will highlight several low-cost and simple approaches that can and will solve some age-old problems our industry faces on a daily basis. Whether you’re looking to enhance your program by offering a continuous culture of quality, or you want to increase the visibility of operational data, our panel discussion will offer you a way to jump-start improvements at your own institution. Participants will learn successful and innovative techniques that work well for managers and staff. Practical and inexpensive solutions to everyday problems covering a variety of topics, and from the point of view of the veterinarian’s manager’s and husbandry technician’s viewpoints will be presented. The collective experience of several institutions will discuss their lessons learned so that attendees will be able to jump-start their programs ahead of the curve. Topics of discussion include management development tools and approaches, task management data reporting tools, building a culture of quality, low-cost electronic and self-service tools to enhance daily husbandry and veterinary rounds tasks, and lessons learned about going digital. The target audience includes directors, veterinarians, animal care technicians, veterinary technicians, and financial administrators.

WORKSHOPS


W-15 Animal Facility, Design, Processes, Decisions, and Technology
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 345
Leader: Mark Corey
Faculty: Laura Halverson, Katie McGimpsey, Cliff Roberts, Lauri Tyrrell
Facilitator: Karen L Lencioni
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

This session will benefit those involved with animal facility design and operations by describing the process, decisions, and technologies involved in the design, construction, and management of animal facilities. The workshop will begin with a discussion of the facility design process, including who should be involved, the objectives and level of effort by stakeholders, milestone decisions to be reached, and anticipated durations of the various phases of the process. Current trends in the industry will be explored through discussions about planning, interior construction, and finishes. Faculty will frame the discussion from the owner’s perspective and experiences in the real world. The workshop will also cover mechanical, electrical, and piping design and operations. The discussion will focus on the risks associated with animal welfare, loss of research and facility resiliency, and how engineering decisions affect each of these parameters. The lessons learned will help enable participants to make more informed decisions as they develop and operate their own facilities. Planning energy and resource efficient facilities is no longer a trend or an option, but rather an integral driver in facility planning. We will discuss sustainability strategies regarding energy and water that are being effectively implemented in animal facilities and the long-term benefits derived from each.


W-16 IACUC Protocol Review Challenges
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 348
Leader: Marcy A Brown, Deb A Frolicher
Faculty: Gary Borkowski, Marcy A Brown, Deb A Frolicher, Eileen Morgan, Nicolette A Petervary
Facilitator: TBN
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

This popular workshop will be presented using a mixture of case studies, group discussion, and interactive exercises. Workshop participants may submit scenarios involving protocol review challenges or IACUC issues that have either occurred at their institution or that they wish to discuss. Workshop leaders consist of certified IACUC professionals, as well as representatives from OLAW, USDA, and AAALAC International. Participants will work in small groups to discuss certain challenges and then share their recommendations with the whole group. Leaders will interact with each group on an individual basis to assist them in developing methods to deal with difficult situations involving the IACUC. Situations likely to be discussed may include pain/distress categories, humane endpoints, rationale for species and numbers of animals, noncompliance, difficult investigators, high-risk animal models, how to implement and use veterinary verification and consultation (VVC), and training issues. Participants will leave with a more thorough knowledge of common IACUC issues and a variety of methods to deal with them. The target audience includes veterinarians, IACUC members (including nonaffiliated members), animal technicians, investigators, and investigative staff members.


W-17 Vivarium Ergonomics: Working Safer and Smarter
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: 346
Leader/Faculty: Jennifer S Kilpatrick, Terry Snyder
Facilitator: Trinka W Adamson
Workshop Fee: $140 Workshop Limit: 50

Vivarium staff experience a high incidence of work-related musculoskeletal injury, pain, and discomfort. This can lead to loss of experienced employees, costly workers compensation claims, and negative impact on morale, quality, and productivity. A robust ergonomic program can successfully address these problems. Using practical examples this interactive workshop will introduce participants to effective strategies and methods for problem identification, worker engagement, and establishing a successful program of continual, sustainable improvements.

PLATFORM SESSIONS

2:15 PM-5:00 PM

Platform Session abstracts will be available on www.aalas.org in July. They will also be included in both the mobile app and the National Meeting Final Program.

SEMINARS


Effective and Efficient Semiannual Inspections How to get the Most Out of Your IACUC Inspections
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom I
Leader: Judy M Hickman-Davis
Moderator: Carrie L Freed
Facilitator: Kathryn Emmer

Semiannual program review can be complicated by the need to inspect multiple sites, follow-up on noted deficiencies, and ensure compliance with currently approved protocols and institutional policies. The ability to decrease regulatory burden, increase process efficiency, and adequately meet the intent of the current regulations while providing for excellent animal care is not simple. Researchers that use animals may experience several inspections a year from EHS, the biosafety office, and radiation safety, as well as from the IACUC. Collaboration among different institutional entities may decrease the number of inspections but has the potential to increase the time involved, complicate scheduling, and dilute the focus for any particular group. The use of dedicated post-approval monitoring personnel may increase efficiency or inflate the administrative burden. How findings are classified will impact what follow-up information or action is required, and how this information can be used to identify trends that may be of larger institutional concerns. The ability to address animal or facility concerns identified during the semiannual review process requires attention to detail, persistent follow through, and adequate personnel for oversight. Institutions should periodically review current practices to ensure they meet the letter and intent of the regulations without inadvertently erecting roadblocks that impact the ability to perform research. This session will review practices and options for conducting semiannual inspections at large academic institutions. Different ways to approach the inspection process, the role of the different members of the IACUC inspection team, difficulties associated with the classification of inspection findings, and a discussion of the challenges associated with enacting change post-semiannual review will be provided. This seminar would be for anyone who might be involved in the semiannual IACUC inspection process.

Speakers/Topics:

2:45 Carrie L Freed Welcome and Introduction
3:00 Judy M Hickman-Davis Education or Inspection? How Do You Approach the Semiannual Review Process
3:25 Erin N Yu Conducting the Inspection: Who, When, and How?
3:50 Valerie K Bergdall What Do You Call It—Significant, Minor, Administrative, or a Note?
4:15 Becky S Schwiebert Cracking the Whip: How to Follow-up and Get the Most Out of Your Inspection Findings

Improving Clinical Translation: Identifying Potential Confounding Factors and Sources of Bias in Animal Study Design

2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom II
Leader/Moderator: William P Feeney
Facilitator: TBN

There has been significant discussion in recent years about enhancing the characterization of animal models to ensure greater scientific and translational relevance. An increased focus on the optimization of animal models and a heightened awareness of the value of robust scientific review provide unique opportunities to address potential confounding factors and sources of bias in study design. These efforts can facilitate the improvement of scientific research studies by fostering increased scientific rigor and experimental reproducibility. Speakers will present reviews of select topics and/or case studies to illustrate how various experimental factors and unintended bias in study design can influence experimental outcomes. Intrinsic animal factors including genetics, immune status, and microbiome, as well as extrinsic factors including dietary influences, will be highlighted. In addition, the use of blinding and randomization to minimize experimental bias will be discussed. The object of this session is to promote further dialogue and action within the greater research community that will benefit our veterinary and human patients. Participants will learn how various confounding factors and unintended bias in animal study design can influence experimental outcomes. In addition, participants will learn about mitigation approaches to enhance scientific rigor and experimental reproducibility. The discussion will have relevance for research biologists, lab animal scientists, laboratory animal medicine practitioners, veterinary pathologists, and biostatisticians.

Speakers/Topics:

2:45 William P Feeney Welcome and Introduction
2:50 William P Feeney Extrinsic Factors—Dietary Influences
3:10 Michael P Quaile Intrinsic Factors—Immune Status
3:30 Alicia Donnelly Intrinsic Factors—Microbiome
3:50 Sunish Mohanan Intrinsic Factors—Genetics
4:10 Mandy l Bergquist Sources of Bias and Mitigation
4:35 William P Feeney Discussion

Journey to the Center of the Mouse

2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom III
Leader/Moderator: Norman C Peterson
Facilitator: TBN

Advances in in vivo imaging technologies have made it possible to visualize biological process at multiple levels in the live animal in real-time. These developments have enabled us to better understand systemic, tissue, cellular, and molecular interactions which have in turn led to advancements in science and medicine. Our journey will start by exploring whole live animal imaging with PETCT and optical imaging. With these modalities, we can map where labeled compounds and therapeutics travel throughout the body. Imaging biomarkers to study metabolism, tumor growth, and pharmacodynamic reactions as they occur in real-time will also be pointed out. We will then travel deeper into the physiological jungle and examine specific organs with the use of ultrasound. Applying this modality we will show how the heart and blood flow can be directly and dynamically visualized and how the tissues respond to stimuli and toxins. Finally, we will delve down to the cellular level with intravital microscopy (IVM) and see real-time cell-cell interactions with multiphoton confocal microscopy in the live animal. On this part of the journey, we are likely to see bacteria engulfing macrophages and witness immune cell interactions. After completing the journey, travelers will have a better appreciation of how the latest imaging technology is applied in discovery and pharmaceutical development.

Speakers/Topics:

2:45 Norman C Peterson Welcome and Introductions
2:55 Norman C Peterson Applications of PETCT and Optical Imaging in Animal Studies
3:30 Kathleen Gabrielson Applications of Ultrasound in Animal Studies
4:15 Jonathan Boyd Applications of Intravital Microscopy in Animal Studies

This Seminar is sponsored in part by North American 3Rs Collaborative (NA3RsC).

You Created a Compassion Fatigue Program—What's Next?
2:45 PM - 5:00 PM/Room: Ballroom IV
Leader: J Preston Van Hooser
Moderator: Sally Thompson-Iritani
Facilitator: Brianna N Meyer

Compassion fatigue (CF) is the cost of caring for other lives in emotional, mental, and physical pain. CF is characterized by deep physical and emotional exhaustion and a pronounced change in the ability to feel empathy. Laboratory animal professionals are vulnerable to CF because of the work that we do and the care that we provide to animals. While CF can be a normal consequence of caring, we must continue to learn ways to improve the support system within the laboratory animal workplace and become more resilient and avoid becoming overwhelmed, shutdown, and/or leave the profession altogether. Such support will help to maintain a healthy and productive climate in lab animal science for both humans and animals. In order for us to continue to provide the best environment possible for advancing science and supporting animal welfare, we must incorporate CF management as part of our overall work environments. The authors will provide a brief overview of the causes and impacts of CF as well as the progress and pitfalls of an institutional compassion fatigue program. Presentation will include perspectives from different institutions at different stages of implementation and references and ideas will be provided for attendees. The authors propose to work with AALAS to establish a National Compassion Fatigue Awareness week/month so that as an industry we can increase awareness about the topic. The learning objectives are 1) reintroduce the topic of CF as it applies to staff 2) share progress and pitfalls of established institutional compassion fatigue programs from around the country and efforts to incorporate CF into an occupational health (OH) program 3) present powerful ways to take control and learn how to change the image of our work by talking about and sharing the important work that we do and 4) develop and implement a National Compassion Fatigue Awareness week/month in collaboration with AALAS and fellow institutions.

Speakers/Topics:

2:45 Sally Thompson-Iritani Welcome and Introduction
2:55 Holly M Nguyen What is Compassion Fatigue and How Does it Apply to Laboratory Animal Professionals and Administrative Support Staff
3:20 Elizabeth A Clemmons Tips on Understanding and Recognizing Compassion Fatigue Systems
3:45 Andreanna D Pavan Assessing Oneself for Compassion Fatigue and Treating Compassion Fatigue in the Workplace
4:10 Ken Gordon Feeling Proud About Your Work and How To Talk About It
4:30 James "Preston" Van Hooser Establishing a National Compassion Fatigue Awareness Week
4:55 James "Preston" Van Hooser Closing Remarks