Office of Responsible Research Practices
The Ohio State University

Office of Responsible Research Practices News

Update on Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) activities during the COVID-19 pandemic

Posted: April 22, 2020

The IBC is supportive of research efforts involving SARS-CoV-2.  Any research that includes handling samples with the virus or research with the virus requires IBC review.  To help expedite these reviews, the IBC is meeting on an as needed basis via videoconferencing to review these new protocols and amendments.

A guidance document is available to assist with protocol preparation.  Please be sure to read this document to ensure you are providing the information required by the IBC. The IBC consists of faculty members who are also experienced researchers. Your help in preparing a well-designed research protocol is appreciated. The IBC also recommends that a new protocol be submitted rather than amending an already approved protocol if the work is not related.

Examples of Activities that require IBC review

  • Creating recombinant or synthetic nucleic acid molecules  (vector plus gene) or inserting these molecules into cell lines/tissue cultures, whole animals, humans, or plants
  • Using or creating transgenic or knock-out animals
  • Using a microorganism that is pathogenic to humans (including immunocompromised individuals), plants, or animals (based on wild-type organism)

Examples related to SAR-CoV-2:

  • Using or collecting human or non-human primate materials (body fluids, tissues, cells and established cell lines, etc.)
  • Isolation of SARS-CoV-2 virus (BSL3)
  • Propagation of SARS-CoV-2 virus (BSL3)
  • Expression of SARS-CoV-2 proteins in non virus systems (typically BSL2)
  • Expression of SARS-CoV-2 proteins in heterologous virus systems (BSL2-BSL3)
  • Vaccination studies with SARS-CoV-2 proteins (BSL2)
  • Isolation of viral nucleic acids from clinical or environmental samples (BSL2)
  • Blood serology for antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 (BSL2)
  • Nucleic acid-based intestinal microbiome studies of infected individuals (BSL2)
Category : IACUC / ORRP

IACUC Rodent Survival Surgery Policy Workshop: How to Stay Compliant

Posted: April 15, 2020


The Office of Responsible Research Practices IACUC staff presents a training webinar for investigators and lab personnel on the IACUC Rodent Survival Surgery Policy.

Although this webinar is for PIs and lab personnel with IACUC approved protocols involving rodent survival surgery activities, anyone who may be considering adding a rodent survival surgery activity is welcome.

IACUC Rodent Survival Surgery Policy Workshop: How to Stay Compliant
Recorded: April 29, 2020
View the presentation video
Download the IACUC Rodent Survival Surgery Policy Training slide deck with Q & A

Contact Justin Lahmers at 614-292-0409 or with questions.

Category : IACUC / ORRP

Guidelines for animal colony maintenance during the university state of emergency

Posted: March 31, 2020

Updated March 30, 2020


It is imperative during this time that we minimize the number of individuals coming to campus.  However, we must also ensure the safety and welfare of our research animals and maintain colonies where possible. Experimental activities should have been discontinued at this time, and access to the vivarium is limited to activities required for colony maintenance (with the exception of approved COVID-19 research activities).

ULAR staff are continuing to work and are currently on a split schedule to maximize physical distancing.


Can I come in to the vivarium to wean and genotype my mice?
Essential colony maintenance to ensure continuity of research once this crisis passes is allowed.  Labs should have one designated essential personnel lab member, approved by the appropriate Associate or Vice Dean for Research or CCC leadership, who will be responsible for doing all the lab’s weaning/cage separation/genotyping activities on a weekly or twice weekly basis depending upon the colony size. If more than one designated staff member is needed, the number of individuals can be increased with approval from the appropriate Associate or Vice Dean for Research or CCC leadership as appropriate for the size of the colony(s). The designated lab member should plan to do the work at a time when the animal care staff will not be present in the room to promote social distancing.  If you wish to access the vivarium, please contact the ULAR team lead for your area, or the clinical veterinarian assigned to your area (see link below).  They will work with you to arrange access times that do not overlap with animal care staff and/or other investigators, to maintain appropriate social distancing.

We need you to delay all non-necessary genotyping at this time recognizing that this may need to be done depending on how long the restrictions are ongoing. If genotyping must occur, approval is needed by the respective college or the CCC as applicable. ULAR technical support can provide weaning service for your lab. Download the Request for Technical Services form.

My animals are enrolled in a long term study that started before the COVID crisis. Can I continue this study or do I need to terminate it?
Study timepoints should be altered to delay activities until the State of Emergency is lifted. If that is not feasible and/or there are concerns for animal welfare then you must speak with your college or CCC leadership, as applicable, and ULAR, for approval for an exception. If an exception is approved, you must limit the number of personnel doing animal work and conduct the work at a time when the animal care staff will not be present in the room to promote social distancing. If tissue harvesting is required, a designated laboratory staff member must be approved by the appropriate college or CCC. Please store tissues appropriately in your freezers and do not perform experiments or start primary cultures until restrictions are lifted. Work with your Associate or Vice Dean for Research to avoid overlap in personnel entering the research spaces.

Do I need to greatly reduce the number of cages I have to reduce the workload on ULAR staff?
ULAR staff are considered essential personnel, and are fully staffed to provide the animal care.  Staff are now working a split shift (morning team or afternoon team) to reduce the number of personnel present in the vivarium and support areas at any one time. At this time, ULAR does not anticipate staffing shortages that would impact their ability to provide adequate animal care. Changes in staffing may occur over time, and if services are impacted, investigators will be notified.

My IACUC protocol says I will do weekly measurement of tumors and weighing of mice. Will IACUC take action against me for not doing this during this Emergency State?
The IACUC recognizes the State of Emergency declared by the University restricts the ability of research personnel to conduct routine activities therefore the IACUC will not penalize researchers for not conducting routine monitoring during this period. ULAR technical staff can help monitor the animals condition if you anticipate that your research interventions may result in welfare issues during the State of Emergency. Download the Request for Technical Services form.

Can ULAR euthanize animals that they identify meet ERC, or have health issues for me?
Certainly.  If you have special needs for tissue collection for animals that ULAR euthanizes, please arrange with the ULAR technical staff pre-emptively so that supplies can be readily available. Download the Request for Technical Services form. If you are performing tissue harvesting for an animal that meets ERC, please follow guidelines noted above for mice in long-term studies. Euthanasia that is needed due to a welfare concern is done at no charge to the investigators. Euthanized animals will be handled at the investigator’s discretion, e.g., placed in a refrigerator for essential personnel to retrieve, frozen, discarded or placed in formalin. Retrieval can be done with approval in advance as above.

If I cannot come to campus to access the vivarium for colony maintenance, can ULAR help with this?
For any issues where a PI or team member cannot come to campus to access the vivarium, contact the ULAR team lead or the clinical veterinarian for your area. They will assist in ensuring that the necessary colony maintenance occurs. View ULAR team members and clinical veterinarians at each vivarium facility.

For all other questions:  Contact Dr. Valerie Bergdall (

Category : IACUC / ORRP

IRB Overview for Graduate Students

Posted: February 25, 2020

The Office of Responsible Research Practices and the Research Commons is offering a workshop for graduate students on how to navigate the human subjects research submission process. The session will focus on the following key topics:

  • Understanding why we have an IRB process
  • Exploring types of research and levels of review
  • Reviewing application components
  • Tips for successful application completion
  • Finding out where to go for help

While the session will be tailored to social and behavioral sciences researchers, anyone preparing IRB submissions is welcome. The workshop will be held on Wednesday, March 25th, from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the Research Commons, Third Floor, 18th Avenue Library, 175 West 18th Avenue.

Registration requested at:

Contact Sandra Meadows at 688-8641 or with questions.


Category : IRB / ORRP

Updates to the Buck-IRB system

Posted: February 5, 2020

New update to the Buck-IRB submission system will go live on February 7, 2020.

This update involves the Radiation pages.

  • The “Radiation Exams/Procedures” page now includes the option to add radiation therapy procedures.
  • Instructions on the “Radiation”, “Radiation Exams/Procedures”, and “Radiation Dosage Totals” pages were revised for clarity.
  • Includes revised information about the dose calculator.

Login to Buck-IRB at

For additional information about this Buck-IRB update, please contact Michael Donovan at

Category : Buck-IRB / IRB / ORRP

IRB Educational Session: Submitting Amendments in Buck-IRB

Posted: January 20, 2020

The Office of Responsible Research Practices and the Research Commons are offering an advanced workshop on amendments to approved human subjects research and the Buck-IRB system. The session will:

  • Describe the amendment process
  • Review relevant HRPP policies and regulations
  • Provide guidance and tips on amendment submission via Buck-IRB
  • Present strategies to facilitate the amendment screening and review processes

While the session will be tailored to behavioral and social sciences researchers, anyone preparing IRB submissions is welcome. The workshop will be held on Thursday, February 20th, from 10 to 11:30 a.m. in the Research Commons, Third Floor, 18th Avenue Library, 175 West 18th Avenue.

Registration requested at:

Contact: 614-688-8641 or

Category : IRB / ORRP

Advarra Review of Human Subjects Research

Posted: January 9, 2020

The Office of Responsible Research Practices, Advarra, and the Center for Clinical and Translational Science are offering an educational session about Advarra oversight of Ohio State human subjects research with Advarra representative, Kathleen Rankin, and Jessica Mayercin-Johnson from ORRP.  The presentation will:

  • Provide an overview of the Ohio State and Advarra submission processes
  • Navigate within the Ohio State and Advarra platforms
  • Describe required submission components
  • Review tips for successful submissions

The session will be held on Thursday, January 30 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the James Cancer Hospital, Room L045, 460 West Tenth Avenue.

Registration requested.

  • Live streaming available upon request. Please do not register if you plan to attend via live stream. Contact Sandra Meadows at 614-688-8641 or
Category : Educational Offerings / IRB / ORRP