• 35 years of experience in special diets for laboratory animals
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Frequently asked questions

A specific question about nutrition, care and housing of laboratory animals? Or about the appliances and equipment of a laboratory and animal unit? Have a look at our FAQs first. Or contact us.

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What is laboratory nutrition?

It is a range of standard diets for laboratory animals. We have a permanent stock, which allows us to deliver quickly. We deliver standard diets for rats, mice, rabbits, guinea pigs, dogs, pigs and primates. For other species, please contact us: +32 (0)14 45 13 10 or admin@carfil.be.

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What is a special diet?

A special diet is nutrition made on request to meet your specific research needs. The following special diets can be delivered:

  • Purified special diets to cause symptoms of oversize and deficiencies
  • Special diets to trigger specific diseases (e.g. obesity, diabetes, atherosclerosis)
  • Control and test diets containing special substances
  • Medicated diets, mixed with active pharmaceutical substances
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What is the shelf life of special diets?

Special diets are carefully pelletised into 10 mm pellets and can also be delivered as a powder. In general these diets can be used indefinitely up to 3 months after the production date, if stored in a dry, dark and cool place (< 7°C). 

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What is the minimum ordering quantity for a special diet?

The minimum quantity for an order of special diets is 10 kg. This minimum batch size is based on technological conditions to achieve the highest possible homogeneity and accuracy of the mixture. Feeding is normally ad libitum. A standard analysis of each batch is available on request. If a specific analysis is required, this should be requested in advance.

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How are special diets formulated?

Special diets are formulated using purified-derived and chemically-defined ingredients. The reaction of test animals can specifically be influenced by using special diets. Thus, ingredients and additives can be added in excessive or insufficient method to induce reproducible disease symptoms, which are very similar to those of human being. Purified diets are available for all animal species, mostly used for rats and mice. They are always based on a control diet which is formulated according to physiological demands. Experimental diets are variations of this control diet as one or more parameters are adapted in accordance with the scientific study.

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For which disease models can special diets be delivered?

Purified diets are available for the most common disease models. Especially modified high fat diets are used for inducing obesity, diabetes, atherosclerosis, metabolic syndrome, hypertension and lipemia. Special diets causing other medicinal conditions e.g. fatty liver, cancer, caries and many others are available too.

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What is the difference between autoclavable standard and radiation nutrition?

The process of autoclaving destroys certain vitamins and amino acids. That is why autoclavable nutrition is supplemented with vitamins and amino acids. The autoclavable nutrition is packaged in double-walled paper bags which can easily be opened with steam. Standard nutrition is not sterilised. Radiated nutrition is sterilised but did not undergo heat treatment, thus ensuring that the best nutritional properties are conserved.

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What materials are the cages made of?

We distribute housing manufactured by Uno bv. The cages are made of polycarbonate (Makrolon®) or polysulfone. Both solid, hard and transparent materials able to resist high temperatures. They are not harmful and suitable for use in medical applications and for contact with food products.

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What is the difference between polysulfone and polycarbonate?

Polysulfone (PSF) is a plastic with a very high resistance to heat and better chemical resistance than polycarbonate (PC; Makrolon®). It is hydrolysis resistant for continuous use with hot water and steam at high temperatures. At Carfil Quality we offer both types of cages.

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What are metabolic cages?

Metabolic cages for test animals are made of stainless steel. They are equipped with a unique system for the separate collection of faeces and urine. The design guarantees a maximum of comfort for the animal. Maintenance is efficient and quick.

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What is the advantage of nesting material for laboratory rodents?

Rodents are busy nest builders. Nest material increases the feeling of safety of the animals and reduces stress and loss. It contributes to an improvement of the research procedures because it offers a solution for a number of very important biomedical and test-related issues. Nestlets – made of pulped cotton – are for example the perfect nesting material for laboratory rodents. Nestlets do not only meet the natural needs of the animals, but also meet the strict demands of laboratories. 

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What are GLP studies?

GLP stands for Good Laboratory Practice. It is a quality system dedicated to the organisational processes and circumstances governing the planning, implementation, follow-up, determining, archiving and reporting of non-clinical studies. This is to assess the safety of chemical substances in relation to humans, animals and the environment.

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What is the price for diets, care and housing of laboratory animals?

The price for diets depends on the required ingredients, quantity and end products (pellets or powder). Contact us for prices or request a quote, no strings attached.

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