Frequently Asked Questions

compass pointing toward integrity

What is the IBC?  

The National Institutes of Health require any organization that receives funding for recombinant DNA research to have an Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) to review and approve relevant projects.

What projects need IBC registration?  

Any project that involves the use of recombinant or synthetic DNA, microorganisms, biological toxins or venoms, human or non-human primate materials, or field work with animals, requires registration with the IBC.

Do I need to register with the IBC if I do not receive NIH funding?  

Yes. The NIH requires all relevant projects to be reviewed by the IBC regardless of their funding source.

What projects require review by the full committee?  

Any work that falls under Section III-A, B, C, D or E of the NIH Guidelines, involves the use of infectious organisms included in Risk Groups 3 and 4, or the use of Biologically Active Toxins listed as Select Agents will require review by the full committee.

Is a separate IBC registration required for every project?   

Projects that use similar biohazards in a similar manner can be grouped into a single IBC registration.

Can I use Select Agents in my research?  

If your research involves Select Agents or any activities that fall under Dual Use Research of Concern (DURC), you should contact Florida Atlantic’s Biosafety Officer before proceeding.

How do I fill out the IBC Registration Application Form?  

Not every part of the IBC Registration Application Form will need to be filled out for every project. Only fill out the sections that are relevant to your project. All applications should include the Project Information section at the beginning and the Safety section at the end.

Where should I send my completed IBC Registration Application Form?  

Send completed forms to Andrew Donovan, the IBC Coordinator, at

How long does an IBC registration approval last?  

IBC registrations are approved for three years.

Can I modify an existing IBC registration?  

Yes, amendment forms are available in the forms section of the Florida Atlantic IBC website:

Can I do work at BSL-3 at Florida Atlantic?  

At this time, Florida Atlantic does not have the capability for BSL-3 work.

What training is necessary to receive IBC approval?  

All laboratory staff are required to complete the CITI Initial Biosafety Training course. All staff involved in handling recombinant or synthetic DNA are required to complete the CITI NIH Guidelines course. Other training is required by EH&S. Information about these courses can be found in the training section of the Florida Atlantic IBC website.

Who should I contact about IBC questions?  

Please contact Andrew Donovan, the IBC Coordinator, at