Tufts Welcomes Public to Institutional Biosafety Committee Open Meeting March 27, 2010

NORTH GRAFTON, Mass. — The Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University welcomes the public to an open meeting of its Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) on Saturday, March 27, 2010 from 10 to 11 AM in the Kohnstamm Conference Room of the Administration Building, 201 Westboro Road, Grafton.

Scheduled topics of discussion, with opportunities to ask questions, include the role of the IBC in the school’s biomedical research, overview of a typical meeting, its oversight of biosafety procedures and a review of registration application, approval, and post-approval oversight of research.

An optional tour of the school’s $31-million New England Regional Biosafety Laboratory (NE-RBL) will follow starting around 11 AM. The Biosafety Level-2 and Level-3 facility is dedicated to a better understanding of—and therapeutics and vaccines for—food and water-borne illnesses and zoonotic diseases. The NE-RBL recently underwent a site visit as part of the process of certification by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of both its facility and operating procedures for handling Select Agents.

In accordance with the NIH Recombinant DNA Guidelines, Tufts University formed an Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) that is responsible for the review and approval of recombinant DNA (rDNA) and infectious agent use. Committee members have extensive experience in the areas of infectious disease, molecular biology, physical containment, research animals and biosafety, as well as regulatory and policy issues.

In 2005, the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine formed an IBC based in Grafton to focus specifically on rDNA and infectious agent research on the Cummings School campus. In 2006, the Cummings School IBC registered with NIH and, in March 2007, this IBC assumed responsibility for the rDNA and infectious agent research done at the Grafton campus.

Membership on the Grafton IBC includes individuals nominated by the Cummings School and two members of the Grafton community nominated by the Board of Selectmen. A third Grafton community member may also serve as an alternate IBC member. Beginning in 2008, the Grafton Board of Health Agent was also designated an ex officio member of the Grafton IBC. All members are approved by the Vice Provost’s office at Tufts University.

For more information on the Institutional Biosafety Committee, please visit www.tufts.edu/vet/ne-rbl/community/institutional_biosafety_committee.html.

Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University

Founded in 1978 in North Grafton, Mass., Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University is internationally esteemed for academic programs that impact society and the practice of veterinary medicine; three hospitals and two clinics that combined treat more than 80,000 animals each year; and groundbreaking research that benefits animal, public, and environmental health.




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