The importance of in vivo small animal research to the scientific community cannot be overestimated. Along with the advantages of small animal manipulations come inherent difficulties, among them intubations which are often necessary for inhalation anesthesia. In small animals, placing endotracheal tubes is technically difficult primarily because of the small size of the subject and the lack of equipment specifically designed for this task. This project focuses on development of a small animal intubation and imaging device which will alleviate all of the associated problems currently posed by small animal intubation. The compact design of the BioTex Stylet Intubation Scope or """"""""BioSIS"""""""" will also allow standardization of the procedure across several types of common small laboratory research animals.
This project focuses on the development of a novel intubation probe for in vivo small animal research. We estimate that hundreds of thousands of small animals are intubated as part of research studies each year in the U.S. alone. Surprisingly, no single device or universal protocol for small animals exists. The developed device will have the ability to image, illuminate and magnify detailed structure of the oral cavity, and will be suited for small animal intubation of the endotracheal tube. The device is expected to greatly speed such procedures, reduce training requirements, and minimize animal suffering.