PsychoGenics offers a comprehensive repertoire of validated screening tests for psychiatric, neurological and developmental disorders and pain. All steps of the process are regulated according to our diligent Quality Assurance
PsychoGenics prides itself on its rigorous quality control procedures. No test is offered without extensive validation. Most tests have been run in multiple strains of mice or rats and have shown the desired response to standard reference compounds. Studies on client compounds usually include a standard reference compound to confirm test outcomes.
Client contracts undergo Quality Control at each of the following steps:
Stringent scientific protocol is followed and scientists performing the studies are blinded to the treatments and quality control checks are performed on data and measurements for accuracy.
Animals are assigned a unique identification, compound usage is tracked, and experimental data are processed through PsychoGenics' proprietary databases where additional quality control checks are in place. Reports are signed by the Study Director and as appropriate, the Senior Director of Quality Assurance, and the Manager of Biostatistics or their designee.
PsychoGenics strong statistical capabilities ensure studies are sufficiently powered and appropriately analyzed. All electronic lab files are backed up each night as a consolidated backup file to a high capacity network. Additionally, offsite back up is also maintained in a fireproof safe cabinet. Information is archived for a period of at least two years.
Association For Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care International
PsychoGenics achieved Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC) International accreditation on June 28, 2007, and continued full accreditation notification in July 2010. PsychoGenics facilities operate to AAALAC standard for the health and welfare of our animals.
PsychoGenics’ animal vivarium (“Facility”) is operated to support the humane use of animals in research and testing programs. The care and use of animals within the Facilities meets the regulations of the Animal Welfare Act, principles of the Public Health Service (PHS) Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (“PHS Policy”) and regulations of the New York State Department of Health. In establishing policy, this institution is guided by the “United States Principles for the Utilization and Care of Vertebrate Animals Used in Testing, Research and Training” outlined in the PHS Policy, and the Guidelines for the Care and Use of Mammals in Neuroscience and Behavioral Research (National Research Council 2003). PsychoGenics has implemented a program of humane laboratory animal care and use based on the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (National Research Council 1996). PsychoGenics’ Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) review all procedures and behavioral test protocols for approval prior to the use of animals in research.
The facilities animal welfare and surgical program is overseen by our Consultant Veterinarian. The highest standards of animal care are implemented to promote a pathogen-free facility and that all animals are maintained to ensure good quality of life. Two recent complete health reports must be provided for all animals entering the facility and a quarantine period is required for all non-vendor mice. All work is conducted in PsychoGenics' 65,000 sq. ft. AAALAC accredited facilities.
In recognition of the important role of the investigative and animal care staff in animal care and use, quality assurance, and adherence to “Guide” standards, PsychoGenics Program of Animal Care and Use, and Standard Operating Procedures, instruction in laboratory animal science is required for all personnel handling animals, to ensure program compliance and the quality and integrity of our research. Staff must demonstrate knowledge of laboratory animal science or comparable training in animal care and use as monitored by the IACUC in order to perform animal research at PsychoGenics. All staff undergo training acceptable to the program Veterinarian and Senior Director of Quality Assurance, including a review of all relevant current guidelines, regulations, and laws concerning the use of animals in biomedical research.
Staff are trained in-house for technical and surgical procedures, and test procedures by a designated expert or certified trainer. Staff is required to obtain certification to perform a test or procedure by the expert or certified trainer, and by the Veterinarian for all surgical procedures. Training records are available to our clients.
Post Approval Monitoring of protocols and test procedures by the Veterinarian, Quality Assurance and Operations group include direct observation and evaluation of the competency of staff involved in an experimental procedure using animals. Regular laboratory inspections and data audits ensure the highest quality research.