Refinement Database

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

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

Links to the full text for publications that appear in open access journals or are published on the AWI website are provided under the abstract.

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 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) can be filtered by Animal Type and Topic. Most publications older than 2010 can only be searched by keyword. 

While non-human primate studies have long been conducted in laboratories, and more recently at zoological parks, sanctuaries are increasingly considered a viable setting for research. Accredited sanctuaries in non-range countries house thousands of primates formerly...

Neurophysiologic studies of NHP commonly involve their transfer from a housing enclosure to a laboratory by using a mobile chair. This transfer should be performed in a manner that is safe and minimizes stress for...

Hair plucking is observed in many captive primate species and is often characterized as an abnormal behavior. However, this behavior may be both self-directed and social and may have different etiologies. Early research in captive...

The Association of Primate Veterinarians (APV) recognizes that several forms of restraint, including physical and chemical, are necessary for the safe handling of nonhuman primates (NHPs). The following guidelines aim to provide information to researchers...

The genetic and biological similarity between non-human primates and humans has ensured the continued use of primates in biomedical research where other species cannot be used. Health-monitoring programmes for non-human primates provide an approach to...

The past few decades have seen a burgeoning of scientific studies on great apes’ use of nests for sleeping in the wild, as well as their nesting behavior and sleep in captivity. We review recent...

Evaluating the genetic diversity of natural populations of endangered species is important for conservation. Although the genetic analysis of wildlife usually requires collecting DNA non-invasively, the variety of non-invasive DNA sampling methods is limited for...

The revised fifth edition of Clinical Laboratory Animal Medicine: An Introduction is an accessible guide to basic information for conducting animal research safely and responsibly. It includes a review of the unique anatomic and physiologic...

This article describes the importance of providing laboratory animals with opportunities to engage in play, and provides a few practical ideas for how to do this.

Activity budget comparisons between groups or individuals in the wild and those in captivity are commonly used to determine the range of wild-type behaviors that nonhuman animals in captivity perform. These comparisons are conducted with...

The Association of Primate Veterinarians (APV) recognizes that CSF collection may be required for both clinical and research purposes in nonhuman primates (NHP). Because there are inherent risks associated with the technique, the laboratory animal...

Training nonhuman primates (NHPs) to perform cognitive tasks is essential for many neuroscientific investigations, yet laboratory training is a time-consuming process with inherent limitations. Habituating NHPs to the laboratory staff and experimental equipment can take...

In the past few decades, there has been an increase in the number of zoo-based touchscreen studies of animal cognition around the world. Such studies have contributed to the field of comparative cognition despite the...

This article describes creative enrichment ideas for nonhuman primates, including celery stalks embedded with seeds; paper rolled into tubes, braided and filled with fruit and seeds; pineapple crowns loaded with treats; dry spaghetti noodles coated...

When primates exhibit hair loss and are observed to engage in self or social hair plucking (a rapid jerking away of the hair shaft and follicle by the hand or mouth, often accompanied by inspection...

"When you keep adult Rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta) males, adult Cynomolgus (Macaca fascicularis) males or adult Vervet males (Chlorocebus pygerythrus), in the same enclosure, is it advisable to have the canines of the males blunted...

Facial thermography has enabled researchers to noninvasively and continuously measure the changes of a range of emotional states in humans. The present work used this novel technology to study the effect of positive and negative...

Abnormal behavior occurs in a number of captive nonhuman primate species and is often used as an indicator of welfare. However, reported levels of abnormal behavior often vary across species, making general welfare judgments difficult...

Innovations in apparatus technology come about for a variety of reasons such as the need to use the same methodology with various species, the opportunity to present dynamic and carefully controlled stimuli, the goal of...

For humans and for non-human primates heart rate is a reliable indicator of an individual’s current physiological state, with applications ranging from health checks to experimental studies of cognitive and emotional state. In humans, changes...

The field of primate behavior management has had only limited success in preventing and treating abnormal behaviors, such as stereotypy and self‐injury, in captive non‐human primates (NHP). In contrast, applied behavior analysts have had great...

"Do any of you give cooked food like pasta, potatoes or vegetables to non-human primates? What’s your experience? Do the animals benefit from cooked food; do they like it; does it affect their health in...

Specifically designed restraint chairs are the preferred method of restraint for research studies that require NHP to sit in place for sustained periods of time. In light of increasing emphasis on refinement of restraint to...

It is widely known that the psychological wellbeing of captive animals can become compromised by a captive environment that lacks proper environmental stimulation. Environmental enrichment programs have become the norm in captive environments yet research...

More than a quarter of a century has elapsed since the Animal Welfare Act mandated that research facilities develop and follow a plan to promote the psychological well-being of captive primates. Since passage of this...

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