Animal Health Diagnostic Laboratory (AHDL)

Frequently Asked Questions

What needs to be tested?

All tissue/cell lines, tumors, stem cells, and biological products originating off the NCI-Frederick campus, including tissues/cell lines from the NIH campus, commercial suppliers such as the ATCC (American Type Tissue Collection) and all animal serum products must be tested.

How are samples prepared for submission?

MTBM-M/R Testing: Samples will be submitted to the LASP Animal Health Diagnostic Laboratory (AHDL) as in the past, but the AHDL will submit samples to RADIL each Wednesday. Samples received on Tuesday pm, Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday will be sent the following week. For testing cultured cells, one small cryovial of each sample with 1 x 107 cells per vial. Cells may be in the form of pellet, in spent growth medium (preferred) or PBS. For testing non-cellular material, such as material extracted from cell culture, submit one cryovial with 0.5 ml per sample.

Where can I get the necessary paperwork?

An on-line submission form is available at the AHDL web site: The form must be filled out completely. Questions or concerns regarding the on-line form can be addressed to the AHDL at 301-846-1134.

Where samples should be taken?

Samples may be given to LASP Building Manager or taken directly to Building 429-AHDL, Monday through Friday 8am until 4:00pm.

Which agents will be evaluated?

Mouse hepatitus virus (MHV) Rat coronavirus (RCV)
Polyoma virus (POLY) Sialodacryoadenitis virus (SDAV)
Sendai virus (SEN) Sendai virus (SEN)
Pneumonia virus of mice (PVM) Pneumonia virus of mice (PVM)
Reovirus 3 (REO3) Reovirus 3 (REO3)
Minute virus of mice (MVM) Kilham virus (KRV)
Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus (GDVII or TMEV) Toolan's H-1 virus (H-1)
Lymphocytic coriomeningitis virus (LCMV) Retheliovirus (k)
Ectromelia virus (ECT) Mycoplasma spp. (MYCO)
Lactic dehydrogenase-elevating virus (LDHV) Rat parvovirus (RPV)
Mycoplasma spp. (MYCO) Rat murine virus (RMV)
Mouse parvovirus (MPV) Lymphocytic coriomeningitis virus (LCMV)
Mouse norovirus (MNV) Rat cytomegalovirus (RCMV)
Mouse rotavirus (EDIM or MROTA) Seoul virus (SEO)
Mouse adenovirus (MAD) Mouse adenovirus (MAD)
Mouse cytomegalovirus (MCMV)  

Who pays for this testing?

All investigators must pay for each line tested and must have an NCI-Frederick Cost Center Number. Investigators may contact their Administrative Office for such information. Requests for pricing can be directed to:

Are there any exceptions to the testing requirements?

Spontaneous tumors that arise within NCI-Frederick animals, provided that the cells are not collected during the time of a virus outbreak, may be exempted from testing; however, when a disease outbreak is confirmed within an NCI or NIH animal facility, all biological materials passaged in vivo within the previous six weeks should be re-submitted for testing or discarded so that they are not re-introduced into animals. If the passaging history or the parental origin is uncertain, the sample should be resubmitted and tested for the listed agents.

What about fresh human tissue?

Yes, although rare, agents such Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis Virus (LCMV) and Reovirus may be transmitted from humans to animals. These tissues need to be from documented HIV-negative and Hepatitis B negative patients.

How soon will results be returned?

MTBM-M/R Testing: 7 to 10 days

What do I do with the results?

Fax results to the appropriate ACUC Coordinator.

For Bethesda:
Attach results to your ASP or if the ASP was already submitted, fax results to Bethesda ACUC Coordinator at 301-402-1276 and specify to which ASP they should be attached.

For Frederick:
Attach results to your ASP or if the ASP was already submitted, fax results to Frederick ACUC Coordinator Angela M. Stahl at 301-846-6682 and specify to which ASP they should be attached.

General Information: There is no time limit on validity of results; however, investigators are encouraged to update testing periodically, such as every 10 years, as the sensitivity and agents screened are likely to increase over time.