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Biological and biomedical research offers groundbreaking opportunities to help further our understanding of biological mechanisms and processes and for targeting new and more effective therapies for devastating conditions. At the same time, however, this research carries inherent safety risks, which must be mitigated by exercising appropriate safety precautions and working at an appropriate biosafety containment level.

The TCU Institutional Biosafety Committee (“IBC”) is the institutional body responsible for oversight of activities involving biohazardous agents and recombinant and synthetic nucleic acid molecules that require approval for “biosafety activities” as described in current governmental regulatory requirement. These regulatory requirements include, but are not limited to, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Guidelines for Research Involving Recombinant or Synthetic Nucleic Acid Molecules (NIH Guidelines), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Guidelines, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations and compliance directives, and the CDC’s advisory document recommending best practices for the safe conduct of work in biomedical and clinical laboratories, Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories.

The TCU IBC’s oversight includes assessing biosafety containment level and other potentially biologics, such as:

  • Recombinant DNA and synthetic nucleic acid molecules
  • Infectious agents
  • Biological toxins
  • Human-derived tissues, fluids, cells
  • Certain animal-derived tissues, fluids, cells
  • Federally-regulated Select Agents, and experiments with Dual Use Research of Concern potential

Currently, only Biosafety Level -1 and 2 are permitted at TCU.

Resources:  This link will take you to TCU policy.

Does my research require IBC committee review


The TCU IBC is appointed by the Chancellor and reports to the Associate Provost for Research. The composition of the committee meets the requirements as specified in the NIH Guidelines and includes two community members that are not affiliated with TCU. The Department of Environmental Management and Safety provides the necessary administrative support for the functions and business of the IBC. For more information, contact