For both humanitarian and scientific reasons, Caltech is committed to ensuring that animals involved in research and teaching receive humane care and treatment. Caltech maintains an Animal Welfare Assurance (A3426-01) from the NIH Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare assuring Caltech's compliance with the the Public Health Service Policy on the Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals. Caltech is also registered with the USDA (#1181, Certificate 93R-0028) to ensure that laboratory animals are provided with care and comfort meeting USDA standards, and to assure compliance with the Animal Welfare Act.
Additionally, the Caltech animal research program is accredited by the Association for the Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC) and has been so since 2003. AAALAC is a private, nonprofit organization that promotes the humane treatment of animals in science through voluntary accreditation and assessment programs.
All research or teaching activities at Caltech or at JPL involving use of live vertebrate animals or tissues collected from such animals must be reviewed and approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC). The primary role of the IACUC is to ensure the ethical and humane care and use of animals in research, testing and teaching. The IACUC members meet monthly to review new and ongoing protocols using animals. The IACUC is also responsible for ensuring that the animal research program is in compliance with federal regulations and the Guide to the Care and use of Laboratory Animals. To support compliance, the IACUC also inspects Caltech animal facilities and laboratories regularly and oversees training and educational programs regarding animals research.
The Office of Laboratory Animal Resources (OLAR) at Caltech provides services to the animal researchers and hosts the website for the IACUC.