Our Mission

The Animal Care & Use Program fosters a culture of excellence, compassion, and adherence to the highest standards of animal welfare in the conduct of research, testing, and teaching at the University of Michigan.

A Message from Our Leadership

Male and female scientist in laboratory performing biopsy

For decades, laboratory animals have been essential to almost every major advance in human and animal medicine. The University of Michigan community is committed to the highest standards of excellent and humane care in the use of these animals in its research, and we believe that this commitment is central to the rigor and impact of our work.

Our approach goes beyond strict adherence to all required guidelines. In addition, we embrace the principles known as “the three Rs”: reducing the number of animals used to the minimum necessary, replacing animals with other options whenever possible, and refining practices to ensure the most humane conditions and procedures possible.

Our Program comprises three units that support our campus-wide research community and ensure our collective commitment to the welfare of all animals under our care:

Through projects and training activities that span a wide variety of fields, including medicine, dentistry, natural resources and the environment, engineering, public health, and kinesiology, scientific and medical knowledge developed through animal research has saved countless lives and improved health outcomes for both humans and animals.

Some examples of life-changing research projects and teaching programs at the University of Michigan are highlighted in the stories below. 


S. Jack Hu, PhD
Vice President for Research
Professor of Engineering
Institutional Official

Robert C. Dysko, DVM, DACLAM
Attending Veterinarian
Director, Unit for Laboratory Animal Medicine

William Greer, BS, CPIA, LAT, CM
Assistant Vice President - Animal Program Compliance Oversight
Director, Animal Care & Use Office

Daniel D. Myers, DVM, DACLAM
Associate Professor of Surgery
Chair, Institutional Animal Care & Use Committee

Researcher holding black mouse
Tuesday, February 28, 2017Germ-Free Mice Study Shows Importance of High-Fiber Diet in Protecting Against Infection
Using U-M's germ-free mouse facility and advanced genetic techniques, an international team of researchers studied the impact of diets with different fiber content -- and those with no fiber. The findings show the importance of eating natural fiber to protect the digestive tract's vital mucus barrier.
Researcher donning personal protective equipment holds small black mouse
Sunday, February 5, 2017New Mouse Model Leads to a Surprising Discovery that Sheds Light on Metaplastic Breast Cancer
For more than a decade, Celina Kleer, M.D., Harold A. Oberman Collegiate Professor of Pathology and director of the Breast Pathology Program at the U-M Cancer Center, has been studying how a poorly understood protein called CCN6 affects breast cancer. To learn more about its role in breast cancer development, Kleer's lab designed a special mouse model that deleted CCN6 from the mammary gland in mice, which allowed the team to study effects specific to the loss of the protein. The results, recently published in Oncogene, have revealed a key genetic driver for a rare form of metaplastic breast cancer.
Rats being studied in laboratory
Monday, December 12, 2016U-M Researchers Share Rat Model with Scholars Worldwide
It's a pretty obvious connection - those who exercise more often are less susceptible to disease. But how exactly does a man’s aerobic capacity affect his chances of suffering a spontaneous heart attack? And how does a woman’s running ability impact her brain function? U-M researchers have developed a unique rat model that provides scientists worldwide with a significant resource to study how exercise endurance capacity correlates with disease risks.


As a public institution and an accredited site for animal use, we are open to inquiries, reports of concern, or other communications from within and beyond the U-M. Questions about the care and use of laboratory animals at the University of Michigan should be directed to acuoffice@umich.edu