- Resources and references
- Cardiac puncture sampling in other animals
- All blood sampling techniques in the rat
Please read the general principles of blood sampling page before attempting any blood sampling procedure.
Cardiac puncture is a suitable technique to obtain a single, large, good quality sample from a euthanised rat or a rat under deep terminal anaesthesia if coagulation parameters, a separate arterial or venous sample or cardiac histology are not required. It is appropriate for all strains of rat.
A sample of 10 - 15 ml of blood can be obtained depending on the size of the rat and whether the heart is beating. Blood samples are taken from the heart, preferably the ventricle, which can be accessed either via the left side of the chest, through the diaphragm, from the top of the sternum or by performing a thoracotomy. Blood should be withdrawn slowly to prevent the heart collapsing.
Cardiac puncture should not be used if the peritoneum needs to be lavaged to harvest cells, as this technique can cause blood to escape into the peritoneal cavity.
|Number of samples||One|
|Sample volume||Up to 15 ml|
|Equipment||19G - 21G needle|
|Staff resource||One person is required to take the blood sample.|
- Beeton C, Garcia A, Chandy KG (2007). Drawing blood from rats through the saphenous vein and by cardiac puncture. Journal of visualized experiments: JoVE
- Parasuraman S, Raveendran R, Kesavan R (2010). Blood sample collection in small laboratory animals. Journal of pharmacology & pharmacotherapeutics1(2): 87
- Hoff J (2000). Methods of blood collection in the mouse. Lab Animal 29:10
- Morton DB, Jennings M, Buckwell A, Ewbank R, Godfrey C, Holgate B, Verschoyle R (2001). Refining procedures for the administration of substances. Laboratory Animals 35(1): 1-41