Abstract # 105:

Scheduled for Friday, August 1, 2003 08:15 AM-10:15 AM: Session 9 (Science Theatres 143) Symposium

Ketamine: The Good, The Bad, And The Alternatives for Physiological and Behavioral Data Collection in Nonhuman Primates

A. J. Bennett
Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Department of Physiology and Pharmacology & Department of Pediatrics, Medical Center Blvd, Winston-Salem, NC 27157, USA
     Ketamine is a dissociative anesthetic drug whose use is ubiquitous in veterinary medicine and in research settings with nonhuman primates. Despite its widespread use, much basic information about its potential adverse consequences, its long-term effects on neurobiological and behavioral processes, or its potential to confound study results, is unavailable. The purpose of this symposium is to stimulate discussion on the role of ketamine in current research and veterinary practices and to generate strategies for alternatives to its use. Participants will present experimental data that demonstrate ketamine effects on physiological or behavioral outcomes commonly measured in nonhuman primate research. A diverse set of outcome measures is represented in the presentations: stress hormones, immunologic markers, heartrate variability, cognition, activity, and exploratory behavior. The second emphasis of the symposium is on strategies for reduction of ketamine use. Methods for physiological sample collection in awake animals will be presented as important alternatives for data collection in nonhuman primates. Appropriate selection of alternative anesthetic agents will be discussed as a second option for reduction of ketamine exposure. The overall goal of the symposium is to use these presentations as a platform for discussion on ketamine use in nonhuman primate research. Key discussion points include assessment of current practices across facilities, evaluation of the need for ketamine reduction, and identification of other strategies to use during veterinary and research procedures.