animal care and use committee

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Ethics: Views from IACUC Members

Lise Houde, Claude Dumas and Thérèse Leroux

Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) members were interviewed on various ethical matters, including ethics, animal ethics, science and ethics, and the use of animals in research, in order to explore their implicit ethical framework. The results revealed that IACUC members entertain rich and diverse beliefs about ethics, that are part of an implicit ethical framework which relates to different domains of knowledge, such as biology (differences between human and animals), psychology (e.g. affective relationships with pets), and so on. The results also revealed that IACUC members hold quite a restrictive view on both animal ethics and animal use in research, and that they apply implicit ethical notions, such as respect and justice, to some elements (e.g. ethical rules) of the explicit ethical framework they are provided with when performing ethical evaluations of animal use. The study suggests that IACUC members should be provided with more up-to-date information on topics such as animal ethics and animal use in research.
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