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SCRO Scope and Responsibility

The SCRO Committee must review:

  • All research funded by the State of Connecticut, including those that do not use human embryonic stem cells;
  • All stem cell research involving human embryonic stem cells and their derivatives;
  • All stem cell research involving human gametes and human embryos;
  • iPSC research involving implantation of human cells into pre-natal animals or the central nervous systems of post-natal animals, and iPSC research involving the generation of human embryos or other totipotent cells.

This applies to research at all schools, colleges, campuses, and research arms of the University of Connecticut regardless of the source of funding.

Stem cell research using human embryonic stem cells, human gametes, or human embryos may not begin and external funds will not be released until SCRO Committee approval is granted.

SCRO Committee members shall be appointed by and report to the Vice President for Research or his/her delegate. The membership of the SCRO Committee will reflect the scientific, medical, ethical, legal, and compliance expertise necessary to perform the responsibilities listed above and will include members of the UConn Health and University of Connecticut faculty and staff, community representatives, and additional outside members with appropriate qualifications as needed.

The SCRO Committee is responsible for the following with regard to human embryonic stem cell (hESC) lines. To:

  1. Provide oversight over the procurement and use of hESC lines;
  2. Develop guidelines for the University of Connecticut/UConn Health (henceforth referred to as the University of Connecticut in this document) with respect to research involving hESC lines and their derivatives consistent with State of Connecticut Public Act No. 05-149;
  3. Provide scientific and ethical review of, and approve in writing, research protocols using human embryonic stem cells as required by the committee’s guidelines and policies;

(a) Receive and review documentation of compliance of all in-house human stem cell research with applicable regulatory requirements and University of Connecticut policies;

(b) Ensure documentation of the provenance of human embryonic stem cell lines, including evidence of IRB review and approval of the procurement process as appropriate;

  1. Review cases of collaborative research with investigators at other institutions to determine if procedures prescribed by their institution afford protections equivalent to Federal, State, or University of Connecticut guidelines and may be substituted for one or more of these guidelines;
  2. Maintain registries of all hESC research conducted at the University of Connecticut, including hESC lines derived or imported by institutional investigators;
  3. Facilitate education of investigators involved in hESC research with respect to relevant ethical, legal, and policy issues in hESC research;
  4. Monitor local, state, national, and international ethical, regulatory, and policy discussions and make recommendations to modify University of Connecticut policy as needed; and
  5. Provide advice on ethical issues related to human embryonic stem cell research as requested by University of Connecticut administrators, oversight committees, or individual investigators.

The SCRO Committee is also responsible for oversight of induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines derived from human tissue including the following:

  1. Providing scientific and ethical review of, and approving in writing, research protocols using human induced pluripotent stem cells as required by the Committee’s guidelines and policies (See section III);
  2. Reviewing cases of collaborative research with investigators at other institutions for iPSC research falling under the Committee’s jurisdiction to determine if procedures prescribed by their institutions afford protections consistent with the University of Connecticut guidelines;
  3. Facilitating education of investigators involved in iPSC research with respect to relevant ethical, legal, and policy issues;
  4. Monitoring local, state, national, and international ethical, regulatory, and policy discussions and making recommendations to modify University of Connecticut policy as needed; and
  5. Providing advice on ethical issues related to iPSC research as requested by University of Connecticut administrators, oversight committees, or individual investigators.