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Animal Science Department

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The ASD department is Headed by Dr. Daniel Chivatsi Chai Msc. BVM

The department exist to serve IPR research programs. Our primary mission is to provide the best possible research support services in support of the institutional animal care and use IACUC and keeping with all applicable laws, regulations and guidelines and Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC) accreditation standards.

The department’s capabilities are broad based and flexible to accommodate a variety of research interests.

The team effort between Primate Medicine, colony management and Diagnostic is a “three-legged stool” of success, each leg is necessary to achieve the desired balance.

ASD Objectives

  • Provide high quality centralized clinical veterinary oversight services to ensure compliance with optimized standards of research conducted.

  • Colony breeding and husbandry of nonhuman primates NHP including data management, Identification, record keeping with information that help recognize genetic variability and produce animals whose family, relationships are known.

  • Maintaining an environment in the animal unit in which their physical, social, and psychological needs are met and regularly ensuring that behavioral attributes are indicative of well-being through enrichment.

  • Offer diagnostic and pathology services in areas of haematology, parasitology, bacteriology, mycology gross and histo-pathology fields.


Primate medicine

The primate medicine team comprises of Primate Veterinarians and Primate Animal Technicians. The team is responsible for clinical care of all nonhuman primates and encompasses all health needs across the lifespan from neonatal to geriatric stages and from preventive medicine services to intensive care, from animal health reports to reproductive cycles.

Primate medicine also provides support services to project investigators and an avenue of education growth in research sciences.

Unique features of Primate Medicine

  • Therapeutics:
    This involves provision of specialized care and treatment e.g. post-operatives including special forms like anaesthesia and analgesia.

  • Surgery room:
    With closed circuit laparoscopy TV monitors, scanner and other surgical equipment s to assist in surgical procedure.

  • Isolation rooms :
    For animals on recovery or suspected to harbour pathogens that can infect other animals in the colony.

Colony management section

This section is headed by an experienced and trained colony manager and has two sections:

  1. Animal care staff unit

  2. Enrichment and behavior management unit

The institute has cumulatively processed over 6000 NHPs comprising of monkeys of different species as at January 2017.

The section ensures that only healthy, well bred, well managed animals are to be used to achieve the quality of scientific information required through:

  • Experience of different animal species, physical, social and psychological needs.

  • Accommodation pattern of breeding, feeding and general management.

  • Behaviors and their deviation from normal under different conditions of maintenance.

Unique features of the section

  • New Breeding Harmony houses with species-specific enclosure design and sufficiently usable horizontal and vertical space. These houses can accommodate more animals with more enrichment opportunities suitable for colony breeding. (photo)

  • ASD Rodent program:
    A 4- room conventional rodent facility that can house all species of mice, rats, hamsters, Rabbits, guinea pigs and other small animal species. Entry is limited to animal care personnel and authorized staffs with PPE. (Photo)

  • New Nyani house :
    That has been built in the new art and technology with innovative and flexible animal housing units for experimental animal.

  • Quarantine units:
    Where groups of nonhuman primates brought from other sources are put through 90 days quarantine, their serum chemistry and virus profile are analysed, physically examined and Tuberculosis tested.

  • Bio containment

The unit is a secured area that provides BSL 2 care of animals infected with pathogens or agents associated with human diseases and pose moderate hazard to personnel and environment.

  •  Environmental enrichment:

  • A critical component of refinement, one of the 3Rs that provides an environment to the animals with opportunities to increase species typical behaviors and reduce frequency of stereotype behaviors.

Pathology and Diagnostic labs

The unit offers diagnostic and pathology services to the institute in areas of haematology, parasitology, bacteriology, mycology, gross and histo-pathology. It is poised to expand the scope of diagnostic services with the view of attracting a wider clientele I the field of wild and Veterinary medicine.


Department vision

The department aspires to provide quality laboratory animals especially NHPs for carrying out biomedical research with strict regard to the philosophy of the 3Rs and AAALAC international principles to make IPR a center of excellence in biomedical research.

Please direct your inquiries to Dr. Daniel Chai

email: dchai@primateresearch.org, dchivatsi2002@yahoo.co.uk

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