Updates to IBC Policy and Form Submission Process – March 2023

The following message was sent via email to all University of Maine employees on March 20, 2023 by the Office of the Vice President for Research and Dean of the Graduate School.

The Office of Research Compliance has worked with the Biosafety Officer, Dr. Andy Holmes, and the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) to review and update the Policies and Procedures for Research Involving Recombinant or Synthetic Nucleic Acid Molecules or Infections Agents (PDF).

Two key changes to note:

  • New Registration Form: In order to ensure all biosafety spaces are inspected and that the IBC has a record of all biosafety work being conducted on campus, all labs (research and/or educational) using biological materials of any kind will fill out a basic Registration (containing information like PI, lab locations, BSL, summary of activity). Protocols will still be submitted to the IBC for individual projects for any non-exempt rDNA work and/or any non-exempt work that is BSL2 or higher; these protocols will be valid for 3 years.
  • Expanded definition of ‘PI’: The revised Policy adopts a broader definition of PI to include PIs, lab managers, research supervisors, instructors, or any individuals responsible for the biosafety work to be conducted.

The revised policy, updated Protocol Form and new Registration form are all available on the Biosafety section of the ORC website; direct links are below:

While the research community is encouraged to begin utilizing the new IBC Registration Form, this is a soft rollout during this spring and summer. IBC Registration will be required effective with the start of the Fall 2023 semester.

Please contact Dr. Holmes (andrew.p.holmes@maine.edu) or the Office of Research Compliance (umric@maine.edu) with any questions you may have regarding these changes.

Stay up to date with Biosafety and all other research compliance news by subscribing to the Research Compliance Newsletter!