Institution TypeNon-Profit Research Institute
Is there a medical school?No
Is this a land-grant institution?No
Vivarium Director

Trinka Adamson, MS, DVM, DACLAM

Program Director

Trinka Adamson, MS, DVM, DACLAM

Who to Contact

Trinka Adamson, MS, DVM, DACLAM

AddressSalk Institute for Biological Sciences, 10010 N Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla, CA 92037
Phone(858) 260-9794

Vivarium Information

Vivarium NameAnimal Resources Department (ARD)
Is the facility AAALAC accredited?Yes
Describe management structureCentrally managed animal care program with an ACLAM boarded veterinarian as Sr Director/AV and a board eligible Clinical Veterinarian.  The program has a total of 67 full time employees, including 2 Managers, 2 Assistant Managers, 4 Supervisors, and 2 Assistant Supervisors.  Veterinary Services has 1 Supervisor (who reports to the Clinical Veterinarian) and 7 registered veterinary technicians.
Describe the extent to which your facilities are centralizedAll animal facilities (3 main facilities and 7 satellite facilities) are centralized under ARD management except a gnotobiotic program (housed within one of the main facilities) and a zebrafish/cephalopod facility.  ARD and the investigators doing gnotobiotic and zebrafish/cephalopod work collaborate on various aspects of their operations to ensure compliance with all regulations/requirements.
Vivarium Square FeetARD currently operates over 45,000 ft2 of vivarium space.  The 3 main facilities include a 20,000 ft2 barrier mouse facility, a 14,500 ft2 conventional multispecies facility (including primate suites), and a 6,700 ft2 facility housing a transgenic core and behavioral testing core.  Satellite spaces include a SPF rabbit facility, xenopus and zebrafish facilities, a naked mole rat facility, and several rodent housing spaces across campus.
Summarize the nature of the animal population and the predominant types of clinical activitiesThe Salk Animal Resources Department provides care (including veterinary care, veterinary research support services, diagnostic services, business operations, and husbandry operations) for approximately 17,000 cages of mice, several hundred cages of rats, and a large NHP population (macaques and marmosets).  We also care for a number of other species, including but not limited to rabbits, naked mole rats, ferrets, guinea pigs, xenopus, and zebrafish.  Clinical activities primarily revolve around the rodents and marmosets, however there are sporadic cases in the other populations as well.
Number of Veterinarians in program2
Number of ACLAM Diplomates in program1
Number of Boarded Pathologists0 – Our program collaborates with the UCSD pathologists
Number of Other Boarded Veterinary Specialists0
Number of necropsies/week in the veterinary unit0-4
Number of surgical cases/week in the veterinary unit0-2

Training Program Details

Is this program recognized by ACLAM?Yes
Does this program participate in the Veterinary Internship & Residency Matching Program (VIRMP)?No
Number of concurrent residents1-2 (weekly discussions with UCSD residents)
How many residents/trainees have completed this program?0
Of these, how many have subsequently become ACLAM Diplomates?N/A
In what year did the program accept its first trainee?2019
How many years are required to complete this program (residency only)?3
Is formal coursework offered?Yes – Laboratory Animal Medicine Seminar Series in collaboration with UCSD
Is a degree program associated with this residency?No, however opportunities for PhD work are present on campus as well as with UCSD and may be pursued on an individual basis
If yes, what degree(s)?N/A
Which departments most commonly grant degree(s)?N/A
Give an overview of this program, describing its particular strengths and any unique aspects that are not addressed in any of the other sectionsThe Salk residency program will provide exposure to a multitude of species and unique vivarium operations (including barrier facilities, ABSL2 (and shortly ABSL3) suites, aquatic facilities, naked mole rats, non-human primates, transgenic core operations, behavioral testing, etc.).  Residents will be part of the IACUC and a highly functional and valued veterinary support team providing hands on clinical, diagnostic, and surgical services across campus. Residents will be encouraged to work up cases and will be required to do a research project of their choosing to become board eligible. Research opportunities include but are not limited to cancer biology, microbiome, infectious disease, and neuroscience. The ARD supports the teaching and research of 48+ faculty and their students, visiting scientists, fellows, and research staff, and is a vital component of the Salk mission.  Salk consistently ranks among the leading research institutions in the world in objective measures of contribution of faculty and the impact of their findings.  The institute has trained more than 2,700 scientists, including five Nobel prize winners, and the labs are home to nine Howard Hughes Medical Investigators and 14 members of the National Academy of Sciences.
Describe any unique research interests of your facultyGnotobiotic research, naked mole rats, transgenic marmoset models
Give a few literature citations of publications completed by trainees during their tenure in this programN/A (we will be graduating our first resident in 2022).
Where will vacancies be advertised?ACLAM, ASLAP, and AALAS
What month does the program begin?September (an earlier start date negotiable)

Living and Working

Starting Annual SalaryCompetitive salary at or above NIH postdoctoral salary scale
To what extent is travel to meetings, etc. paid for?National AALAS Meeting
Is individual health insurance provided?Yes
Is family health insurance provided?Yes
Describe any fees or tuitionN/A
Describe the residents' responsibilities for night, weekend, and holiday coverageResidents participate in emergency on-call rotations covering evenings, weekends, and holidays.  Typically, once every 3-4 weeks.
How many annual vacation days are given?N/A
How many annual sick days are given?

12 days of paid sick leave per year, paid on an accrual basis

12 paid holidays per year
Briefly describe the community

The Salk Institute is located in beautiful La Jolla, CA (, a hilly, seaside neighborhood within the city of San Diego, CA.  It occupies 7 miles of curving coastline along the Pacific Ocean within the northern city limits.  The population reported in the 2010 census with 46,781.

La Jolla is surrounded on three sides by ocean bluffs and beaches and is located 12 miles north of downtown San Diego and 45 miles south of Orange County.  The climate is mild, with an average daily temperature of 70.5 degrees F (21.4 degrees C).

San Diego is the 8th largest US city and offers a variety of cultural venues and activities, outdoor (as well as college and professional) sports, internationally recognized museums and regional theaters,

zoological conservation, and exhibition institutions, etc. The food and brewing community is vibrant and exciting as it continues to thrive and grow.

There are numerous highly productive and respected research institutions in the area which allow for an active local laboratory animal medicine community.  There are multiple informal and formal opportunities for collaboration, consultation, and communication.
Institutional, facility, or training program web site