Vivariums, Specialized Housing & Procedure Rooms

The Tufts Boston Health Sciences Center offers two, state-of-the-art AAALAC accredited vivariums that are available to researchers.

The vivariums include a 22,000 square foot rodent facility and a 11,000 square foot mixed animal facility. The rodent facility has multiple animal holding rooms and procedure rooms (nearly 1:1) for performing procedures in close proximity to the housing. Rodents are maintained in individually ventilated cages using autoclaved bedding, irradiated food, and acidified, filtered water. The procedure rooms are outfitted with isoflurane anesthesia machines, circulating hot water heating pads, exam lights, glass bead sterilizer, scale, central vacuum, central CO2, and lockable cabinets and drawers that can be assigned. Class II biological safety cabinets are available in select procedure rooms. The mixed animal facility houses rodents, rabbits, ferrets, pigs, sheep, goats, and other species except non-human primates.

In addition, there are specialized housing areas for in vivo use of radionuclides, hazardous chemicals, infectious agents, and human xenografts in immunocompromised rodents.

The Husbandry and Operations (H&O) unit of Tufts CMS, which ensures that the facilities and critical environments are functioning properly to support the animals and research, manages all of the facilities.

H&O provides the following services:

  1. Receipt, transport, and uncrating of newly obtained animals;
  2. Daily feeding and watering of animals;
  3. Daily observation for health-related problems and referral to the Animal Health Service and investigative staff if detected;
  4. Provision of special diets and water;
  5. Euthanasia of animals;
  6. Changing and sanitization of caging and related equipment;
  7. Sterilization of animal cages, feed, bedding and equipment for immunocompromised animals;
  8. Quality control of cage and water bottle sanitization processes and microbiological monitoring of rodent feed;
  9. Decontamination of animal quarters;
  10. Vermin control and eradication;