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Open Access Antimicrobial Stewardship in Laboratory Animal Facilities

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Bacterial resistance to antimicrobial drugs has become a global health crisis. Physicians and veterinarians are embracing the concept of 'antimicrobial stewardship' (AMS) to preserve the efficacy of antibiotics for future generations. Antimicrobials are used in laboratory animals to treat clinical disease, to protect populations that may be vulnerable to infection, and in research projects including studies of the microbiome and to influence expression in genetically engineered animals. This overview provides a critical look at the use of antimicrobials in contemporary vivaria, with special attention to rodents because they are the most commonly used species in research and because antimicrobial use in rodents is not straightforward. Improvements in antibiotic use are encouraged with the goal of decreasing bacterial resistance while continuing to provide quality clinical care and research support. Suggestions are framed by using the 5 Rs: Reduce, Refine, Replace, and Review antimicrobial use in the vivarium, and take Responsibility for the judicious use of antibiotics in research animals.

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Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: Animal Health and Care Section, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland;, Email: [email protected]

Publication date: 01 January 2017

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  • The Journal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (JAALAS) serves as an official communication vehicle for the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS). The journal includes a section of refereed articles and a section of AALAS association news. The mission of the refereed section of the journal is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information on animal biology, technology, facility operations, management, and compliance as relevant to the AALAS membership. JAALAS accepts research reports (data-based) or scholarly reports (literature-based), with the caveat that all articles, including solicited manuscripts, must include appropriate references and must undergo peer review.

    Attention Members: To access the full text of the articles, be sure you are logged in to the AALAS website.

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