ULAR Caging Types (PDF)
As a service unit, University Laboratory Animal Resources (ULAR) is obligated to recover costs associated with the procurement, husbandry and care of animals used for research at UCI. These costs are covered by recharging Principal Investigators (PIs) for per diem (animal maintenance cost for any portion of one calendar day) and fees for facility space, supplies, and other specialized services. These charges are billed on a monthly basis. Invoices are distributed to the respective PIs following the month these charges are incurred.
Per Diem rates are calculated using, as a guide, the NIH's Cost Analysis and Rate Setting Manual for Animal Facilities. Per Diem charges generally include the following services:
Animal HusbandryAnimal husbandry includes daily care and maintenance of animals, including observation, feeding, watering, cleaning cages, and providing a suitable environment (proper temperature, humidity ranges and light cycles). Related activities such as record keeping, census taking, cage changing and cleaning, and sanitizing animal and procedural rooms are also included.
General and Administrative CostsULAR general and administrative costs include direction, control, and general management for the provision of ULAR services and general use supplies, such as gloves, gowns, shoe covers, masks, environmental enrichment devices, etc. and for the daily operation and maintenance of ULAR trucks and vehicles.
Refuse Disposal/General SanitationRemoval and disposal of refuse includes fees charged for refuse disposal and costs for facility sanitation, housekeeping, and maintenance over and above that provided by UCI.
Cage Washing and PreparationCage washing includes the sanitation of animal cages, cage racks, and related activities done in designated cage washing rooms. Cage preparation for rodents includes the placement of bedding into cages and assembly of the cage, wire top, water bottle and filter top.
Sterilization of Rodent CagingSome rodent housing situations (e.g. immunodeficient or barrier-housed mice) require the use of sterile caging, irradiated or autoclaved diet, sterile bedding and specific handling requirements. The cost of this service is reflected in the higher per diem charges for rodents housed and maintained this way.
Animal Health CareAnimal health care consists of veterinary medical care provided for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of naturally occurring diseases or accidental injury to animals. Additional fees may be charged to individual investigators for veterinary medical care, supplies or medications resulting from experimental manipulations or choice of experimental model.
Carcass DisposalPer diems also cover the cost for disposing of standard or hazardous animal carcasses at the completion of the study.
Additional charges may be incurred for services not considered part of normal husbandry, and thus not included in the per diem charge, such as the following:
- The use of special food, water, bedding or cages
- Special procedures required for handling animals treated with biological, chemical or radiation hazards
- Cage changing more often that the ULAR standard
- Medications to treat experimentally induced conditions
- Breeding and weaning animals
- Separating overcrowded cages
- Euthanizing animals
Recharge rates are subject to annual review by the Animal Research Advisory Committee (ARAC) and approval by the Office of Research. A justification for recharge rate changes is submitted annually to the Budget Office for review and approval.