Problem statement: Developing a complete animal use protocol (AUP) literature search process is imperative to identifying alternatives to procedures that may cause more than momentary pain or distress, and to demonstrate that proposed activities do not unnecessarily duplicate previous experiments.
Description of research: The regulations of the Animal Welfare Act require investigators using animals in research to consider alternatives to procedures that may cause more than momentary pain or distress, and to demonstrate that proposed activities do not unnecessarily duplicate previous experiments. A comprehensive literature search is an acceptable method of meeting this mandate and, when properly constructed, identifies literature references containing information that has the potential to replace the species with a lower species or non-animal alternative, reduce the numbers of animals used, or refine the experimental procedures to minimize pain or distress (the 3Rs). For principal investigators (PIs), generating a literature search can be a daunting task. As many institutions provide PI training covering the regulatory aspects of the literature searches, guidance for actually creating the literature search strategy may not be included. Therefore, to help PIs begin new literature searches, it's important to know available resources for completing literature searches that include, but are not limited to, the USDA Animal Welfare Information Center, university librarians, and information specialists. In addition to these resources, PIs can also reference conferences, colloquia, and subject expert consultants as noted in USDA Policy #12: Consideration of Alternatives to Painful/Distressful Procedures. This poster describes a process used at Pfizer, Inc. for generating literature searches which enable the PI to develop adequate biomedical research protocols focused on the 3Rs.