IACUC Review of Federally Funded Grant Applications

Effective: Moved to Policy Library from the Office of Research Assurances June 3, 2009
Reviewed and Updated: August 3, 2016
Contact: Office for Responsible Research


The purpose of this policy is to clarify requirements regarding institutional animal care and use committee (IACUC) review of federally funded research projects. The IACUC has delegated the responsibility of protocol and grant congruency to the Office for Responsible Research (ORR).

Policy Statement

Public Health Service (PHS) policy and the NIH grants policy require institutional certification—when research is supported by PHS funds or is funded by a PHS member agency or the National Science Foundation or the Department of Veteran's Affairs—that the proposed research has been reviewed and approved by the IACUC. In order to be in compliance with the regulations, investigators must submit copies of the federal grant proposal with the application for IACUC approval.

The institution is responsible for ensuring that the information in the application for approval is congruent with what is in the grant application. If discrepancies exist between the two documents, the investigator must provide clarification. This clarification may consist of the following:

  • Reconciling the information in the application to match the grant
  • Confirmation of what the actual research plan involves (e.g., confirm the portions of the grant application that are correct, provide an explanation for additional items included in the IACUC application, confirm that procedures listed in the grant application have been removed from the research plan or will be conducted at a later date, etc.). Although IACUC protocols are approved for a maximum of 3 years, a short description must be provided in the IACUC protocol for animal research that will occur in funding years 4–5.

This approach is based upon the guiding principle that the IACUC is responsible for the humane care and use of animals. And by the investigator clarifying any discrepancies, the institution will know what is being approved in both documents. This form of review also allows the flexibility necessary to accommodate changes

  • in the federal grant proposal due to budget reductions,
  • in the scope of the project, or
  • for which the investigator has obtained his/her program officer's approval, etc.

If there is a change in scope of the project, it is the PI’s responsibility to obtain approval from the granting agency.

Direct questions about this policy to Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee, Iowa State University, 515-294-9581, iacuc@iastate.edu.