The Tissue Bank has REC approval to issue samples stored in sub-collections held under its HTA Research Licence to researchers. If researchers apply for access to material from a specified sub-collection they must have permission of the Principal Investigator for that sub-collection. Material cannot be released for use in research until a formal application is approved. Applications can now be made electronically via the Tissue Bank database. If you are already registered as a user of the dataabse you will see "Apply for access to samples" on the left hand side menu bar. Click on this to start your application. If you are not yet a registered user, please email the Tissue Bank to obtain a user name and password. Applications are reviewed by an Application Review Panel, which usually takes between 7-21 days. The purpose of the review is to ensure that the samples are put to good scientific use.
Following approval of the application, the researcher is deemed to have ethics approval from the Wales REC3 committee for their project. This means that researchers using the Tissue Bank material do not have to submit their own IRAS (Integrated Research System Application) form.

A hand holding a slide.All information and samples are identified to researchers only by their tissue bank ID number, therefore protecting donor confidentiality. Where samples are to be sent to third parties as part of the research, this must be specified in the protocol. Researchers must sign a Material and Data Transfer Agreement (Word) (MDTA) when requesting access to material. Occasionally ICHTB receives requests from researchers where the research is exclusively to be carried out by a third party. The final recipient of the samples is then requested to sign the MDTA, rather than the Imperial based Principal Investigator.