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Description of our Facility

Overview

Cyagen Transgenic Animal Center (CTAC) is a specific-pathogen free (SPF) barrier facility. It houses 6,000-7,000 cages of mice in an ultra-clean environment. The facility’s housing space is divided into multiple separate barrier areas, each with its own restricted access, ventilation system, and husbandry staff.

Accreditations

CTAC is AAALAC accredited and OLAW assured.

Information Security

All information pertaining to clients’ projects are treated in a strictly confidential manner. Information is stored on company servers in secured areas with daily backups. All systems are password protected, allowing restricted access only to authorized personnel. Information from one client’s project is never shared with other clients or third parties. Upon initiation of a client’s project, project tracking numbers are used during production in place of information that could be used to identify the client. Only authorized personnel such as project managers have access to the original client information.

Animal Husbandry

Housing

Animals are housed in exhaust ventilated cage (EVC) systems or individual ventilated cage (IVC) systems. Each rack can accommodate 70-100 cages depending on the type of rack. Each cage houses 1-5 adult mice. For pre-weaning pups, only the pups and their mother are housed in the same cage. Mice showing signs of fighting are separated into different cages.

Ventilation

Air in the facility is controlled by fully enclosed ventilation systems. Different barrier areas in the facility are ventilated by independent systems. Air is filtered to class 10,000. The rate of ventilation is >15 air changes per hour. Air source is >70% fresh (filtered from outside). Pressure in the animal housing areas is >10 Pa higher than the corridors, and pressure in the corridors is >10 Pa higher than the outside. Pressure gradients are monitored and recorded on a daily basis. Performance of the ventilation systems is certified annually by the Guangdong Laboratory Animals Monitoring Institute. Assessment is also conducted when problems arise (e.g. strong odor, rushing noise when doors are opened, stagnant air, etc.).

Temperature, Humidity and Light/Dark Cycle

Temperature and humidity are controlled by fully automatic air conditioning systems. Temperature is kept at 24±2°C Humidity is kept at 40-70%. Light/dark cycle is automatically set for light from 6 am to 6 pm, and dark for the rest of the day.

Personnel Gowning

Reusable whole-body covers (covering entire body from head to toe except face and hands) and presterilized single-use gloves and surgical masks are worn by personnel accessing the barrier facility. Whole-body covers are washed and autoclaved after each use. Gowning takes place in an area prior to entering into the facility. Air shower is applied at the entrance of some barrier areas.

Diet and Water

Presterilized diet is purchased from reputable vendors manufactured to the standard published by the Chinese government (No. GB 14924.3-2010, Laboratory Animals: Nutrients for Formula Feeds). The quality of diet is monitored via periodic testing by state-approved third-party test providers. Water is filtered from the city’s public water system, placed in bottles with sipper tubes and autoclaved prior to use.

Bedding and Nesting Material

Bedding is purchased from reputable vendors. It is placed in cages and autoclaved with the cages prior to use. Additional enrichment items such as nesting materials and paper cups are provided where appropriate. These materials are autoclaved before use.

Cage Change and Cage Washing

Cages are changed once per week on designated animal change stations with HEPA-filtered laminar air flow. Changes are also done when need arises. Dirty cages are washed with water manually and inspected visually for cleanness. Bedding is then added and the cages are autoclaved, with temperature sensitive labels placed inside of selected cages to monitor the effectiveness of the sterilization.

Animal Monitoring

Animals are observed by animal care personnel on a daily basis. Any animal injuries, illness or death are recorded. Animals showing signs of significant pain or distress will be sacrificed. Animals showing signs of mild to moderate pain or distress will be placed under closer monitoring. If the signs persist, the animals will be sacrificed.