TTUHSC Libraries
HomeLibrariesOther Internet Resources

TTUHSC Animal Testing and Animal Welfare

Template Search for Animal Testing Alternatives articles using PubMed

1. From the Libraries' homepage, select PubMed from the Databases tab.

2. Choose "MeSH Database" located on the right side of PubMed's home page. Please see the Libraries' tutorial on searching with MeSH.

3. Additional appropriate terms from the following list can be used to retrieve articles. The * allows you to truncate the terms. For an example, cell* will pick up cell, cells, cellular, etc. Quotes keep the phrase together when it is searched.


"alternative animal model*" interactive
alternative* invertebrat*
anaesthe* invertebrate*
analges* isolated (cell, tissue, organ)
anesthe* mannequin* or manikin*
anxiolytic* "mathematical model*"
artificial model*
"artificial intelligence system*" plastinat*
assay*, technique*, method* protozoa*
bacteria* sedative*
"behavior enrichment*" simulat*
behav* "single-celled"
cadaver* software
comput* "statistical model"
"computer aided instruction" toxicity
culture (cell*, tissue*, blood, organ*) train*, educat*, teach*
"digital image*" video
environ*, enrich* virtual
"environmental enrichment" virus*
euthanas* vitro
fish*, cephlopod, amphibian*, reptile* vivo
handl* welfare, pain, distress, stress, "well being"


PubMed - Medical Subject Heading terms [MeSH]:


amphibians animal welfare
anatomic models anxiolytic
anesthesia and analgesia artificial cell
animal disease models artificial intelligence
animal euthanasia behavior
animal housing biological assay
animal model biological specimen banks
animal testing alternatives cadaver
animal use alternatives cell culture
cold shock proteins and peptides organ culture
computer simulation organ culture techniques
controlled environment organisms category
culture techniques pain
environment physiological stress
in vitro [publication type] reptiles
interactive tutorial [publication type] software
invertebrate statistical models
invertebrates theoretical models
laboratory animal model tissue culture techniques
laboratory animals toxicity [subheading or MeSH terms]
manikins virus



Additional databases may need to be searched for a more in-depth search.

For additional information Ask A Librarian


Information Requirements of the Animal Welfare Act

Auth. 9 CFR 2.31 (d)

"[The] IAUCUC shall determine that...

(ii) The principal investigator has considered alternatives to procedures that may cause more than momentary or slight pain or distress to the animals, and has provided a written narrative description of the methods and sources, e.g., the Animal Welfare Information Center, used to determine that alternatives were not available;

(iii) The principal investigator has provided written assurance that the activities do not unnecessarily duplicate previous experiments."

USDA Regulatory Intent

Final Rules and Regulations

Federal Register Vol. 54, No. 168

Thursday, August 31, 1989

"The principal investigator must provide a written narrative of the sources, such as Biological Abstracts, Index Medicus, The Current Research Information Service (CRIS) and the Animal Welfare Information Center that is operated by the National Agricultural Library. We believe that in fulfilling this requirement Committee members will discuss these efforts with the principal investigator in reviewing the proposed activity. We also believe that considerations of alternatives will be discussed during Committee meetings where proposed activities are presented for approval, and made part of the meeting minutes..."


3 R's of Alternatives

Reduction- Number of animals used

Refinement - techniques and procedures to reduce pain and distress

Replacement - of animal with non-animal techniques or lower organism.

Russell, W.M.W. and R. L. Burch (1959, 1952) The Principles of Humane Experimental Techniques, Universities Federation for Animal Welfare: England, 238p.


AWIC Tips for Searching for Alternatives

General area of study

Species being used

Describe protocol

Organ systems involved


Names of hormones, enzymes, CAS#, trade names, etc.

Prominent authors in field including work published by investigator

How the proposed study is unique

Is the investigator aware of any possible alternatives

Any previous searches conducted - keywords used


National Agricultural Library

10301 Baltimore Blvd

Beltsville, MD 20705

Phone: 301-504-6212

FAX: 301-504-7125


Additional Information Resources

AGRICOLA MEDLINE/Pubmed Search and Veterinary Information Resources
AltBib NCBI Genetics Databases Search Page
Animal Welfare Information Center (AWIC) Ovid MEDLINE
embase Scopus
ISI Web of Knowledge TOXNET/Toxline


Page last updated: March 29, 2011