The ANU Animal Ethics Committee (AEC) approves, monitors and regulates the use of animals in research and teaching carried out at ANU, and ensures on behalf of the institution that all care and use of animals is conducted in compliance with the Australian Code for the Care and Use of Animals for Scientific Purposes. The AEC applies a set of principles, outlined in the Code, that governs the ethical conduct of work involving the use of animals for scientific purposes. The role of the AEC is to ensure that the use of animals is justified and provides for the welfare of those animals and incorporates the principles of Replacement, Reduction and Refinement.
The AEC meets to review new animal ethics applications every five weeks. See the link above for all meeting dates and submission deadlines.
Applications for for review by the AEC are due at close of business Tuesday four weeks prior to the meeting. Please start preparing your application early to ensure you meet the submission cut-off deadlines and to allow time for the Committee’s review process and any pre-submission review required. If you have a protocol that needs replacement, we recommend submitting your renewal application two AEC meetings or more prior to your end date.
ANU AEC members are appointed as per the requirements of the NHMRC’s Australian code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes.
According to Section 2.2.4, institutions must ensure that membership of the AEC comprises at least one person from each of four categories of membership:
Category A—a person with qualifications in veterinary science that are recognised for registration as a veterinary surgeon in Australia, and with experience relevant to the institution’s activities or the ability to acquire relevant knowledge.
Category B—a suitably qualified person with substantial and recent experience in the use of animals for scientific purposes relevant to the institution and the business of the AEC. This must include possession of a higher degree in research or equivalent experience. If the business of the AEC relates to the use of animals for teaching only, a teacher with substantial and recent experience may be appointed.
Category C—a person with demonstrable commitment to, and established experience in, furthering the welfare of animals, who is not employed by or otherwise associated with the institution, and who is not currently involved in the care and use of animals for scientific purposes. Veterinarians with specific animal welfare interest and experience may meet the requirements of this category. While not representing an animal welfare organisation, the person should, where possible, be selected on the basis of active membership of, and endorsement by, such an organisation.
Category D—a person not employed by or otherwise associated with the institution and who has never been involved in the use of animals in scientific or teaching activities, either in their employment or beyond their undergraduate education. Category D members should be viewed by the wider community as bringing a completely independent view to the AEC, and must not fit the requirements of any other category.
Additional members to assist the AEC to function effectively:
2.2.5 Institutions should appoint to the AEC a person responsible for the routine care of animals within the institution.
2.2.6 Institutions may appoint additional members with skills and background of value to the AEC.
Access to expertise
2.2.7 The AEC may invite people with specific expertise to provide advice, as required.
Balance of membership
2.2.8 Categories C and D must together represent at least one-third of the AEC membership.
Page updated 6 May 2021