Review of Material Transfer Agreements

MTAs are contractual agreements used for the transfer or exchange of research materials both biological and non-biological to/from the university.  All MTAs should be reviewed and approved by the Sponsored Programs Office and signed by both the PI and FAU’s authorizing official prior to transferring the materials. 

When research materials are transferred to FAU, typically the sender will issue the MTA.  However if requested, FAU can draft a MTA on their behalf. 

FAU uses the Uniform Biological Material Transfer Agreement template issued by the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM).

Templates available are:

AUTM also provides guidance when reviewing non-UBMTA agreements from the transferring organization.  AUTM’s MTA Guiding Principles provides best practices in the transfer of published research materials.

Prior to signing, the transfer of materials requires the review and approval of the appropriate compliance office.  

The EH&S Office reviews the transfer of biological/non-biological materials and chemicals. 

The Research Integrity Office reviews the transfer of live animals and human tissue, cells lines or blood.

Once the compliance office has approved the transfer, both the PI and FAU’s authorizing official will sign.  If FAU receives a MTA that does not include a signature line for the PI, a signature line will be added for the PI. 

**Note:  When transferring materials from FAU to another institution, the following questions should be asked before signing MTA:

  • Is the material patentable?
  • Already patented?  If Yes, where was the material developed? (at another institution?)
  • When was material developed?

If materials are patented, may need to acquire approval from owning institution prior to transfer. Copies of signed MTAs are provided to the Technology Transfer Office.