Recombinant DNA monitoring

In December 2000, the Federal Government passed the Gene Technology Act 2000 (the Act) and the legislation came into force in June 2001. This included the establishment of the Gene Technology Regulations 2001 (the Regulations) and a centralised national Gene Technology Regulator (the Regulator) to undertake assessment of all genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and GM products.

The object of the Act is to protect the health and safety of people, and to protect the environment by identifying risks posed by or as a result of gene technology, and by managing those risks through regulating certain dealings with GMOs.  Both the Act and the Regulations have since been amended and the most recent amendments commenced in September 2011.

The Act stipulates that dealings with GMOs may only be undertaken by an Accredited Organisation with (or access to) a properly constituted and maintained Institutional Biosafety Committee.  By regulatory requirement, you need approval from the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) and, in specific circumstances, the Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) to undertake Recombinant DNA research.  At The Australian National University, the IBC is the University Recombinant DNA Monitoring Committee.

No dealing with a GMO may commence without written approval from The Australian National University Recombinant DNA Monitoring Committee. Dealings with GMOs may only be undertaken in Physical Containment facilities approved by the IBC and certified by the OGTR

The OGTR has also issued the National Framework of Ethical Principles in Gene Technology 2012 which presents ten key ethical principles relating to gene technology, and to genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in particular, to guide scientists and to inform the community.

Reporting requirements

Reporting on ongoing NLRD dealings can be submitted to the rDNA officer via our online app.

Annual reports

ANU researchers who hold an approved dealing need to submit annual reports on their work to the rDNA officer.

Researchers who hold multiple approved dealings need to submit a separate form response for each individual dealing.

    To complete the online form you will need the following:

    • your dealing information
    • information about all staff working on the dealing
    • details of any/all laboratories used for this dealing
    • your completed location spreadsheet - see template on right, or you can update and resubmit last year's spreadsheet file

    If you are transferring your dealing to another PI you will be required to upload confirmation of acceptance from the new PI.

    Terminating a dealing

    Researchers also need to report to the rDNA officer when a project is ending. On completion of the project, transfer to another insitution, or discontinuation for other reasons such as the PI leaving ANU, please fill out the form above and note that the dealing can now be terminated. 

    Transferring a dealing

    If you want to transfer your dealing to another investigator within ANU (i.e. change who is listed as the Primary Investigator), please attach a confirmation of acceptance from the new PI when you fill out the form above.

    Unintentional releases

    Unintentional releases should be reported to the OGTR via the Secretary of the IBC and Liaison Officers should make sure this requirement is widely known in their local area.  Local procedures for reporting unintentional releases (which include reporting to the Secretary of the IBC) should be included in facility manuals.

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