Virginia Tech® home

Institutional Biosafety Committee

Institutional Biosafety Committees (IBCs) are the cornerstone of institutional oversight of research that involves the use of biohazardous agents, including recombinant and/or synthetic nucleic acid molecules.

The Virginia Tech IBC has been charged with the planning and implementation of the campus biohazardous material use program with a purpose to ensure the health and safety of all personnel working with biohazardous agents.

The IBC functions to ensure that instructional and research activities conducted at Virginia Tech are in compliance with our federally mandated responsibilities and obligations, as outlined by current government requirements described in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Guidelines for Research Involving Recombinant or Synthetic Nucleic Acid Molecules (NIH Guidelines); the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) select agent guidelines and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) select agent regulations, both associated with the National Select Agent Registry; and Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) regulations. Additional Select Agent guidance may be found at the National Institutes of Health website. The Virginia Tech IBC consists of faculty, staff, and community representatives who have responsibility for reviewing all teaching and research activities involving:

  • infectious agents (bacteria, viruses, prions, protozoans, fungi, etc.)
  • biologically derived toxins
  • human and/or non-human primate blood, body fluids, cells or tissue culture
  • recombinant and/or synthetic nucleic acid molecules
  • genetic engineering and/or modification in any organism
  • transgenic animals, invertebrates, and/or plants
  • gene transfer
  • select agents
  • dual-use research of concern in life sciences
  • synthetic biology

Experiments involving these activities cannot be started without prior protocol review and approval by the IBC.  The IBC drafts campus biosafety policies and procedures, and reviews individual research protocols for biosafety concerns. The IBC oversees and reviews research protocols involved in both teaching and research, regardless of the funding source(s). In areas of overlap, it coordinates with the IACUC when animals are used, the Institutional Review Board (IRB) when human subjects are involved, and the Radiation Safety Committee when applicable.

The IBC is administratively supported by the IBC Program staff.

Meet and Greets

The staff of the Institutional Biosafety Committee program (IBCP) will be hosting meet and greet events on the Blacksburg campus throughout the year.  These events are open to all members of the Virginia Tech community.  During the events, staff will be available to speak to you about the IBC program, and to answer questions or to discuss your needs related to the use of biohazardous agents and the National Institutes of Health Guidelines.  Below are the dates, times, and locations for upcoming events.  Information will be updated regularly, so please check back for new dates.

To request personal discussions or Zoom meetings for yourself, lab personnel, faculty meetings, classes, or seminars please contact the IBCP office (

Upcoming Meet and Greets

Date Time Location Event
Aug. 27 8:30 - 11:30 a.m. Litton-Reaves Hall, RM 1370 Meet and Greet
Oct. 23 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Fralin Hall Atrium Biosafety and Biosecurity Day
If you are an individual with a disability and desire an accommodation, please contact the IBC program director at 540-231-1910 or during regular business hours at least 10 business days prior to the event.