The Institute of Laboratory Animal Resources (ILAR) prepares authoritative reports on subjects of importance to the animal care and use community; develops and makes available scientific and technical information on laboratory animals and other biological research resources.
ILAR promotes high-quality, humane care of animals and the appropriate use of animals and alternatives. ILAR functions within the mission of the National Academy of Sciences as an advisor to the federal government, the biomedical research community, and the public.
ILAR publishes about thematic topics. Most of these issues are available online. Particularly relevant with respect to humane endpoints are the issues which can be found in these ILAR- journals, for example:
- ILAR Journal 41(2), 2000: Humane Endpoints for Animals Used in Biomedical Research and Testing
- ILAR Journal 49(1), 2008: Noninvasive Bioimaging of Laboratory Animals
- ILAR Journal 48(2), 2007: Training and Adult Learning Strategies for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals
In addition, ILAR published reports related to the topic of humane endpoints:
- The Guide for Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, National Research Council, eight edition (2011), ISBN: 978-0-309-15400-0.
Relevant information includes:
"In the case of a pressing health problem, if the responsible person (e.g., investigator) is not available or if the investigator and veterinary staff cannot reach consensus on treatment, the veterinarian must have the authority (...) to treat the animal, remove it from the experiment, institute appropriate measures to relieve severe pain or distress, or perform euthanasia if necessary." (page 114)
"Euthanasia may be planned and necessary at the end of a protocol or as a means to relieve pain or distress that cannot be alleviated by analgesics, sedatives, or other treatments. Criteria for euthanasia include protocol-specific endpoints (such as degree of a physical or behavioral deficit or tumor size) that will enable a prompt decision by the veterinarian and the investigator to ensure that the endpoint is humane and, whenever possible, the scientific objective of the protocol is achieved." (page 123)
- Recognition and Alleviation of Pain in Laboratory Animals (2009), ISBN-10: 0-309-12832-3 and ISBN-13: 978-0-309-12832-2;
- Recognition and Alleviation of Distress in Laboratory Animals (2008), PAPERBACK ISBN-10: 0-309-10817-9, ISBN-13: 978-0-309-10817-1.
More information can be found on the website of ILAR.