2007 Humane device for bleeding mice Northeast

Award Year 

Each year thousands of researchers worldwide use more than 20 million mice in scientific projects. The vast majority of the experiments require blood to be drawn as part of the re-search project, and the primary method used in the United States to draw blood is retro-orbital (eye) bleeding. While this is a rapid and efficient bleeding method, it is extremely inhumane to the mouse. In fact, many countries have banned this procedure. Alternatively, bleeding by clipping (more) off the end of the tail is simple and slightly more humane; but this yields a very limited amount of blood and neither method can be used when multiple samples are required from the same animal in the same day. Mice can be bled from the subman-dibular region (at the rear of the jawbone) using an expensive scalpel or hypo-dermic needle to puncture a vein; however, a great deal of practice and a fine touch are required be-cause the scalpel or needle must be inserted deeply enough to punc-ture the vein but not so deep that it goes through the cheek. Drs. William Golde and Luis Rodriquez wanted to design a device that could only be inserted to a specific depth and would be a simple method for bleeding mice that could be easily taught and mastered. They were unsuccessful in their attempt to modify the finger-stick lancets used by diabetics, so they designed a prototype lancet they believed would work. They contacted Peter Gollobin, the owner of a small Long Island company that designs and manufactures medical products, to discuss the design and manufacture of a prototype, and a Cooperative Research and Development Agree-ment (CRADA) was established. Gollobin de-signed and produced several lancets. Additional Humane Device for Bleeding MiceDepartment of AgricultureAgricultural Research Service-North Atlantic Area, Plum Island Animal Disease Centermodifications and improvements established a design that was easy to use and worked every time. The final design is a 2” strip of surgical steel with a triangular blade that controls the penetration depth. Different point lengths accommodate different size mice. The technique has increased the accuracy of experiments that require mul-tiple samples from the same animal. This simple method of drawing blood has reduced the suffer-ing of laboratory mice. Internationally, research-ers are rapidly adopting this technology and have purchased over a million lancets in less than a year. (less)