The Animal Core is an essential feature of the MARC and provides a standardized set of rules and practices for animal provision, husbandry and distribution. These Animal Core practices include careful tracking of animal information (such as date of birth, parent identity, litter number and size) and providing information regarding behavioral phenotyping for both mice and rats.
As a central aspect of the MARC, the Animal Core provides an expansive set of resources that is crucial for the success of all associated projects. Aside from general animal provision and husbandry, the Animal Core will catalog and maintain a genetically diverse set of mice for all MARC related research projects including those who are genetically predisposed for methamphetamine consumption or possess specific mutations for the TAAR-1 gene. Mice are also available to outside investigators. All animals are cared for under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian and a team of highly qualified veterinary technicians in AAALAC approved facilities. Our facilities also employ a sentinel-screening program to identify any viral and/or bacterial contamination to rapidly detect and prevent the spread of contaminants.
Additionally, the Animal Core benefits from oversight of the Administrative Core and can provide valuable animal information to the Translational Service Core. This allows for results generated by experiments using Animal Core resources to be shared easily with Component investigators and integrated with other relevant research data.
Overall, the Animal Core provides a strong framework for the generation of valuable research data that improves the MARC as a whole.