The UAB Animal Resources Program is pleased to introduce a rodent Room Entry Order (REO) for the purpose of restricting spread of rodent pathogens. Here at UAB, we are fortunate to only have two significant rodent pathogens, Helicobacter (hepaticus and bilis) and Mouse Norovirus (MNV). These agents are not considered pathogens universally, but since both can contribute to experimental variation, the UAB ARP would like to establish an appropriate REO to minimize their spread.
These organisms were present and distributed by commercial and noncommercial sources before they were identified as potential pathogens, and many institutions became infected. Some institutions do not test for or restrict animals with these agents. Both have low mortality in immunocompetent rodents, but MNV can cause high mortality in mice with deficient innate immunity. MNV survives in the environment for up to 3 weeks so, it is easily spread. Helicobacter, conversely, lives only hours in the environment and is more easily contained.
We can now assign a REO based upon room pathogen status determined by quarterly health surveillance results. PI's receive these results from their animal room(s) at least every six months but also if room pathogen status changes. This REO will allow stabilization of room pathogen status and future establishment of specific pathogen free (SPF) areas. The ARP strongly encourages all animal facility personnel to adhere to this REO as described below.
H. hepaticus/bilis status
Special SOPs Used