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Welcome To The Laboratory Animal Medicine Program

Purpose & Mission

Guinea pig drawing by Dr. Leanne Alworth
All images on this site are
courtesy of Dr. Leanne Alworth

The Laboratory Animal Medicine Program (LAMP) is a division of the Department of Population Health in the College of Veterinary Medicine and is the academic home for the University’s laboratory animal medicine specialists.

Our mission is to advance scientific knowledge and improve the health and well being of humans and other animals while ensuring the humane care and responsible use of laboratory animals. This mission is advanced through our service, research and teaching activities.

In biomedical research, experimental animals have enormous importance as models for elucidating and predicting behavior, health, and disease or for gaining information regarding basic biologic processes. Scientific, legal and ethical considerations have prompted comprehensive and rigorous standards for the handling, care and use of experimental animals.

The university houses more than 20,000 animals on campus, encompassing at least 20 different species. While more than 90 percent of these animals are rats, mice, and fish, our veterinarians are expert in the needs and health care for a wide variety of other animal species, including non-human primates, dogs, cats, guinea pigs, rabbits, pigs, hamsters, birds and amphibians.

hamster drawing

Research Activities

A key part of our research activities is providing expertise to scientists in developing and refining their experimental animal models, and in some cases participate in collaborative research projects.

Independent research in laboratory animal medicine (comparative medicine) includes the development of animal models of human or animal disease, investigations into infectious diseases of laboratory animals, improved handling and care of research animals, computer modeling, procedural and surgical techniques, anesthesia and analgesia, and animal nutrition.

Teaching Activities

Our academic role is expanding with the initiation of a new 2-year residency training program in laboratory animal medicine [PDF]. This training program is designed to meet all the criteria for recognition by the AVMA specialty organization, the American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine (ACLAM). This program is on hold, however, until funding can be secured for an additional faculty member (a clinical laboratory animal veterinarian).