Taconic has designed and constructed a germ-free shipper for delivery of germ-free animals. These animals are free of all other life forms with the exception of endogenous viruses, which are present in the somatic and germ cells of all mice, including germ-free mice. The germ-free shipper preserves the germ-free health status of the animals during shipping.
The germ-free shipper is a large, flexible vinyl sleeve with filtered openings and an accompanying case. The sleeve measures approximately 12 inches in diameter and 3 ½ feet in length. Up to three animal cages (11 ½″ x 7 ½″ x 5″) can fit in the sleeve. Germ-free animals at Taconic are housed in isolators that follow strict gnotobiotic techniques for entry of animals and autoclaved supplies. To move animals from an isolator to a germ-free shipper takes careful maneuvering. One end of the shipper sleeve is connected to the isolator and empty animal cages (pre-positioned in the shipper) are carefully moved from the shipper to the isolator.
The animals located in the isolator are placed into the cages in accordance with prescribed densities. The cages are then moved back into the germ-free shipper, which is then disconnected from the isolator and sealed. The animals are never exposed to outside air; only filtered isolator air and then air from the filtered opening of the germ-free shipper.
Once animal cages have been placed in the germ-free shipper, the shipper is placed in a clear plastic box for transport to its destination. See below for instructions on how to correctly remove the animals from the germ-free shipper.
Orders for the germ-free shipper itself are fulfilled with pre-sterilized shippers. No additional sterilization is required upon receipt.
Gnotobiotic Equipment Prices
Germ-free Shipper (without animals)
Germ-free Shipper (with animals)
Number of mice packed per germ-free shipper:
Up to three animal cages (11 ½″ x 7 ½″ x 5″) can fit in the sleeve of a germ-free shipper.
- 24 at 3-4 weeks (8 per cage)
- 21 at 5 weeks (7 per cage)
- 21 at 6 weeks (7 per cage)
- 18 at 7 weeks (6 per cage)
- 15 at 8 weeks and older (5 per cage)