Notice of Memorandum of Understanding Between NIH and NASA Concerning Laboratory Animal Welfare

Notice Number: NOT-OD-20-095

Key Dates
Release Date: April 16, 2020

Related Announcements

Issued by
Office of The Director, National Institutes of Health (OD)


This Notice announces a memorandum of understanding (MOU) concerning laboratory animal welfare between the NIH Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare (OLAW) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Memorandum of Understanding

NIH and NASA operate under an MOU to ensure consistent and effective oversight of the welfare of animals used in activities funded by NASA. The agreement provides a framework to enhance communication and harmonize the agencies' efforts while reducing regulatory burden to supported institutions. The MOU is posted at NIH MOU with NASA.


OLAW is responsible for the administration and implementation of the Public Health Service (PHS) Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (Policy). The Policy requires institutions to establish and maintain proper measures to ensure the appropriate care and use of all animals involved in research, research training, and biological testing activities. Institutions receiving PHS funding through grants, contracts, or cooperative agreements for research involving vertebrate animals are required to comply with the Policy.

NASA holds its awardees responsible for the humane care and treatment of any vertebrate animal used or intended for use in activities such as field or laboratory research, development, training, experiments, biological testing, or for related purposes supported by NASA grants, contracts, or cooperative agreements. Any NASA awardee performing research on live vertebrate animals must comply with the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) [7 U.S.C. 2131 et seq.], the AWA Regulations [9 CFR 1.1-4.11], the PHS Policy, and the U.S. Government Principles for the Utilization and Care of Vertebrate Animals Used in Testing, Research, and Training. The awardee must follow the guidelines described in the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals and the AVMA Guidelines for the Euthanasia of Animals.


Please direct all inquiries to:

Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare
Telephone: 301-496-7163