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IACUC Resources and Searching Tips

The Institutional Animal Care & Use Committee (IACUC) is responsible for the oversight of animal care and use in various programs. This guide provides resources and searching tips related to IACUC protocols.

USDA-APHIS Requirement

Policy #12 of the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's Animal Care Policy Manual addresses the Animal Welfare Act requirement that researchers consider alternatives in animal testing that account for the 3Rs.  

When a database search is the primary means of meeting this requirement, the narrative should include:

  1. the name(s) of the databases searched (due to the variation in subject coverage and sources used, one database is seldom adequate);
  2. the date the search was performed;
  3. the time period covered by the search; and
  4. the search strategy (including scientifically relevant terminology) used.

Many databases have a Saved Search History feature that can support this documentation.  Note that multiple databases should be searched in order to locate a comprehensive set of articles for review.

Saved Search

For Web of Science:

  • Run all of your searches.
  • Click the "Search History" tab.
  • Highlight and copy the number of results and search terms.
  • Paste them into a word processor.
  • Delete extraneous columns.​
  • Label your table, including the name of the database used and the dates of your searches.

For PubMed MEDLINE:

  • After running your searches, click the Advanced link from the Search results page.  It's located under the search bar.
  • Below the search Builder, you will see your search History.
  • Click the Download history link in the upper right of this section.  Your search results will download as a .cvs file.
  • You can then copy and paste this data into your search documentation.
    • Remember to remove extraneous columns
    • Label your table and include the name of the database and the dates of the searches.
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