This workshop will feature discussions on the availability and genetic diversity of marmosets; presentations on their use as research models; elements of marmoset husbandry and veterinary care; and ethical and welfare considerations regarding the use of marmosets in research. Invited speakers and discussants will contribute perspectives from government, academia, industry, and nonproﬁt sectors at the global and national level.
The New World primate, the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus), is a research model of increasing importance for biomedical research in the United States and globally. Marmosets present certain advantages compared to more traditional nonhuman primate species and may be particularly useful for the development of new disease models using genetic engineering (achieved using the CRISPR/Cas9 technology) and assisted reproductive technologies. Germline transmission of a transgene in marmosets was first shown in 2009 while mapping of their genome was published in 2014. Production of transgenic models of disease in marmosets is currently being tested in the United States and in Japan among others. However, a number of concerns have been voiced with respect to the increasing popularity of marmoset animal models based on the advent of genetic engineering/gene editing. Planned by an ad hoc committee, the Roundtable on Science and Welfare in Laboratory Animal Use will host a public workshop to explore and address these concerns.
Invited experts and speakers from academia, industry, non-profit organizations and government agencies will convene for this two-day public workshop to:
1. Examine the availability of marmosets in the United States and abroad;
2. Discuss animal welfare (e.g., the Three Rs- replacement, reduction, and refinement; risk/benefit analysis) and ethical considerations stemming from the use of wildtype and genetically modified marmosets;
3. Discuss standards of housing and care, dietary needs and feeding requirements for wildtype as well as genetically modified marmosets in captivity.
The presentations and discussions at the workshop will be captured in a workshop proceedings.