Skip to main content
ARS Home » Plains Area » College Station, Texas » Southern Plains Agricultural Research Center » Food and Feed Safety Research » Research » Research Project #436721

Research Project: Biohazard Consultation and Review Services

Location: Food and Feed Safety Research

Project Number: 3091-32420-001-006-N
Project Type: Non-Funded Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2019
End Date: Aug 31, 2024

The purpose of this agreement is to carry out cooperative research and to set forth understandings between the USDA-ARS Southern Plains Agricultural Research Center (SPARC) and the Texas A&M University (TAMU) hereinafter referred to as SPARC and TAMU, respectively, for joint projects and co-location of TAMU and/or SPARC personnel at research sites and facilities in College Station, Texas. 1. It is understood and agreed that while all parties are interested in basic and applied research: a) ARS is concerned with results having regional or national application; b) TAMU conducts research that addresses economic viability and environmental sustainability impacting agriculture, natural resources, and consumers in Texas. 2) The parties are equally committed to reducing and/or eliminating unnecessary compliance burdens and to supporting the success of researchers and the growth of the research enterprise.

TAMU and SPARC are engaged in cooperative agricultural research activities that involve the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and the use of biohazardous material. Federal regulations require that all work involving GMOs and biohazards be done under the approval and oversight of an Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC). SPARC does not have the required in-house expertise to formulate its own IBC. TAMU has a fully functioning IBC and, given the close historical and current working relationship between the two organizations, it is in the best interests of both that the TAMU IBC provide the necessary approval and oversight functions such that all GMO and all pathogenic work done at SPARC, cooperative with TAMU or otherwise, will be in full compliance with all applicable regulations. This agreement, once implemented, will formalize the ongoing relationship in which TAMU has provided GMO approval/oversight to SPARC research, with extension to coverage of SPARC research on biohazardous materials. TAMU will serve as the IBC of record for SPARC.