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IBC Guidance

IBC Guidance serves a repository for guidelines, frequently asked questions, and definitions about the IBC, biosafety, and associated regulations.  If you can’t find what you are looking for, just ask


Activities Requiring IBC Review

In general, what activities require IBC review?

The IBC is responsible for reviewing academic and research activities involving biohazardous materials such as:

If you are using any of the above, it must be reviewed and approved by the IBC.

In general, what are some examples of activities requiring IBC review?

  • Human cell culture
  • Human blood collection
  • Handling animal tissues or blood
  • Mosquito or flea collection
  • Transfecting cells with lentivirus

A project involves saliva collection from participant. Is IBC review required?

Under previous IBC guidelines, the biohazard risks associated with saliva were considered low unless visibly contaminated with blood. However, recent events relating to SARS-CoV-2 have led the IBC to reconsider the risks associated with collecting and handling saliva. Recent Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines have outlined new standard precautions and best practices to follow for saliva collection and handling in light of SARS-CoV-2. Moving forward, the IBC will now require a protocol for all projects anticipating the use of saliva or oral specimens.

Reach out to to discuss further.

Saliva collection may also meet the definition of human subjects research.  Reach out to to discuss further.

When is an IBC protocol required for field research?

Field research involving the collection of biohazardous materials and further analysis will likely require IBC review.  Common materials include:

  • Animal feces or urine
  • Animal tissues or blood
  • Plant or animal toxins

Do teaching/academic activities require an IBC review?

Yes.  Policy 5080 applies to both teaching and research activities involving biohazardous materials.  Common examples include:

  • Self-collected blood or urine specimens
  • E. coli transformations
  • Bacteria

A researcher already knows an activity Is "exempt" from the NIH Guidelines or not covered by them. Why does it still require IBC review?

Familiarity with the NIH Guidelines is appreciated; however, due to their complexity and occasionally updates, the University does not allow self-determination.  In addition, the IBC reviews any activities with other potentially biohazardous materials that fall outside the scope of the NIH Guidelines.

CITI Biosafety Training

Boise State uses the CITI Program to deliver and track biosafety training requirements of the IBC.  Personnel are required to complete biosafety training applicable to the activities they will perform.  Each PI must complete all biosafety courses required under a given protocol.

Biosafety Essentials

Biosafety Essentials must be completed by everyone listed on an IBC protocol.  It is the most comprehensive course covering a lot of material.  This course must be taken again after three years.

OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens

Any personnel handling human blood, most other body fluids, cell lines, or tissues must complete the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens (BBP) course.  This course must be completed annually.

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