The National Institutes of Health Oversight of Human Gene Transfer Research: Enhancing Science and Safety.Adv Exp Med Biol. 2015; 871:31-47.AE
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) oversight of human gene transfer research, which is defined as the deliberate transfer of recombinant and/or synthetic nucleic acid molecules to humans, originates with the NIH Guidelines for Research Involving Recombinant or Synthetic Nucleic Acid Molecules (NIH Guidelines). The NIH Guidelines, which were first published in the Federal Register almost 40 years ago, have been amended numerous times to remain responsive to scientific progress and to clearly define the responsibilities of NIH, the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RAC), investigators, and institutions. Human gene transfer trials conducted at clinical sites in the United States (USA) are subject to the NIH Guidelines if they are conducted at, or sponsored by, an institution that receives any support for recombinant or synthetic nucleic acid research from the NIH. Human gene transfer trials conducted either in the USA or abroad are also subject to the NIH Guidelines if the investigational agent was developed with NIH funds and the institution that developed the investigational materials sponsors or participates in these projects. Trials are registered with the NIH Office Biotechnology Activities (OBA) and there are ongoing reporting requirements. Each new trial is reviewed by the RAC, and those that are novel or raise unique ethical or social issues are selected for review at quarterly public RAC meetings. The RAC also advises the NIH on policy and other matters relating to clinical gene transfer research and biosafety.