Use of Controlled Substances in Research


Controlled substances are chemicals or drugs that can be used as analgesics, anesthetics, euthanasia solutions and/or steroids that have a tendency to promote abuse or physiological or psychological dependence. Controlled substances are chemicals that may be addictive, abused and illegal without proper licensing and registration. The U.S. Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) regulates licensing, registration, storage, security, use, and disposal requirements of controlled substances.

An alphabetical list of all controlled substances can be found in the DEA Orange Book (PDF).

Regulation of Controlled Substances

The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) places all substances which are in some manner regulated under existing federal law into one of five schedules.  This placement is based upon the substance’s medical use, potential for abuse, and safety or dependence liability.  More information about the Act can be found in Title 21 United States Code (USC) Controlled Substances Act.

Additional information about the regulations can be found on the U.S. Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Division Diversion Control Division.

In accordance with Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Parts 1300 to END, all University employees who are conducting research or teaching activities that involve controlled substances must:

  • comply with applicable federal and state laws and regulations regarding their use;
  • possess any necessary US DEA registrations;
  • adhere to controlled substance storage, inventory maintenance, and disposal requirements;
  • comply with reporting and record-keeping requirements.

Up next: Procedures and Guidance