Refinement Database

Database on Refinement of Housing, Husbandry, Care, and Use of Animals in Research

This database, created in 2000, is updated every four months with newly published scientific articles, books, and other publications related to improving or safeguarding the welfare of animals used in research.

Tips for using the database:

  • This landing page displays all of the publications in the database.
  • Use the drop-down menus to filter these publications by Animal Type, Setting, and/or Topic.
  • Clicking on a parent category (e.g., Rodent) will include publications relating to all the items in that category (e.g., Chinchilla, Gerbil, Guinea Pig, etc.).
  • You may also add a keyword to further narrow your search.
  • Please note that at this time, only publications dated 2010 or later (with some exceptions that include earlier publications) can be filtered by Animal Type and Topic, and only publications dated 2020 or later (with some exceptions that include earlier publications) can be filtered by Setting. Most publications older than 2010 can only be searched by keyword. 

Melatonin (ML) and dexmedetomidine (DM) are used separately as anesthetic premedication or as an anesthetic in humans and laboratory animals. In this study, we aimed to investigate the anesthetic properties of both drugs combined. The...

Rats are a commonly used animal model for the study of the pathogenesis and novel treatments of glaucoma, which is induced experimentally using invasive, painful procedures. Peribulbar anaesthesia (PBA) is frequently used in people and...

Voluntary oral drug administration using sweet substances promotes rodents’ therapeutic compliance while reducing stress induced by forced drug administration. We aimed to test whether rats would willingly eat strawberry jam or condensed milk from a...

Formosan serows are endemic to the mountainous regions of Taiwan. This crossover study aimed to assess and compare the anesthetic induction and recovery using either dexmedetomidine–tiletamine–zolazepam (DZ) or dexmedetomidine–ketamine (DK) by intramuscular injection from a...

Alpha2-adrenoceptor agonists (α2-agonists) are widely used in animals as sedatives and for pre-anaesthetic medication. Medetomidine has often been given subcutaneously (SC) to rats, although its absorption rate is slow and the individual variation in serum...

Heart failure (HF) is a serious health and economic burden worldwide, and its prevalence is continuously increasing. Current medications effectively moderate the progression of symptoms, and there is a need for novel preventative and reparative...

Drug safety and efficacy studies frequently use oral gavage, but repetitive usage may cause problems. Administration through voluntary ingestion represents an opportunity for refinement. We aimed to develop a protocol for voluntary ingestion of gelatin-based...

Research in human volunteers and surgical patients has shown that unconsciousness under general anesthesia can be reliably tracked using real-time electroencephalogram processing. Hence, a closed-loop anesthesia delivery (CLAD) system that maintains precisely specified levels of...

Practical mechanisms that can be implemented by animal facilities to enhance refinement include the use of non-aversive handling, non-invasive alternative procedures, and additional environmental enrichment. Thus, we sought to collate these techniques by developing a...

We wished to improve the efficacy and safety of ketamine/xylazine anaesthesia in C57Bl/6JRj mice and achieve a surgical anaesthesia lasting 20-30 minutes, aiming at fewer anaesthesia related deaths and using the subcutaneous injection route to...

OBJECTIVE To determine whether anesthesia type (sedation or general anesthesia) affects kid survival to discharge in caprine cesarean sections (C-sections). ANIMALS Retrospective cohort of 99 caprine C-sections (2011–2021). PROCEDURES All surgeries were performed via left...

OBJECTIVE To test whether the use of low-dose epidural anesthesia (EA) in goats undergoing lower urinary tract surgery reduces the requirements of perioperative analgesics, contributes to intraoperative hypotension, and improves postoperative comfort during the first...

Oral vaccines are gaining attention for their ease of administration and ability to activate mucosal immune responses. However, preclinical studies using this route often require the use of gavage, which has limitations. In this comment...

OBJECTIVE Bearded dragons (Pogona vitticeps), a popular zoological companion species, frequently require sedation for procedures. A novel formulation of alfaxalone with preservatives was FDA approved for 28-day use after the vial is breached. Research has...

The goals of this study were to determine whether mice would adapt to a low-calorie flavored water gel as their sole source of hydration and whether the addition of acetaminophen, tramadol, meloxicam, or buprenorphine to...

Anesthesia with isoflurane prior to carbon dioxide euthanasia is recommended as a refinement, but vaporizer access can be limited. An alternative to vaporizers is the ‘drop’ method, introducing a fixed volume of isoflurane into the...

Using food rewards to motivate mice is commonplace in behavioural research. Using a reward which is highly desirable is of benefit, as it can reduce the need to food restrict animals and can encourage higher...

Tamoxifen-induced CreER-LoxP recombination is often used to induce spatiotemporally controlled gene deletion in genetically modified mice. Prior work has shown that tamoxifen and tamoxifen-induced CreER activation can have off-target effects that should be controlled. However...

Precise oral dosing in rodents is usually achieved by intragastric gavage. If performed incorrectly due to technical difficulties, inexperience, or animal resistance, oral gavage may have animal welfare implications such as esophageal and gastric rupture...

Modified Handling for Mice: Handling mice by gripping the base of the tail has been shown to negatively impact animal welfare by increasing anxiety and aversion to handling. We aimed to refi ne the dosing...

It is desirable to administer drugs by the least invasive route to (1) optimise welfare, (2) reduce the risk of injury to animal handlers and (3) minimise the impact of restraint and transient pain on...

Isoflurane has been characterized as a distressing agent for rodents, causing both physiologic and behavioral effects. Using a "darkened home cage" has been recommended during CO2 administration for rodent euthanasia; this is arguably a similar...

Preclinical drug studies routinely administer experimental compounds to animal models with the goal of minimizing potential adverse events from the procedure. In this study, we assessed the ability to train adult male Long Evans rats...

Oral administration of medication to experimental animals is a cause of significant stress. When coupled to animals who are already under strenuous circumstances due to the disease being modelled, there is a significant risk for...