IV. Definitions

APHIS: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

BSO: Biological Safety Officer

DSP: Division of Sponsored Programs

DURC: Dual Use Research of Concern: life sciences research that, based on current understanding, can be reasonably anticipated to provide knowledge, information, products, or technologies that could be directly misapplied to pose a significant threat with broad potential negative consequences to public health and safety, agricultural crops and other plants, animals, the environment, material, or national security in the foreseeable future​.

EHS: Environmental Health & Safety

IBC: Institutional Biosafety Committee

IO: Institutional Official

NIH: National Institutes of Health

NIH/OBA: Office of Biotechnology Activities, Office of the Director, NIH

NSABB: National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity

PI: Principal Investigator

RAC: Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee, Office of the Director, NIH

rDNA (recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid): recombinant DNA molecules are defined as: (i) molecules that are constructed outside living cells by joining natural or synthetic DNA segments to DNA molecules that can replicate in a living cell, or (ii) molecules that result from the replication of those described in (i) above.

rsNAM (recombinant or synthetic nucleic acid molecules): defined as: (i) molecules that a) are constructed by joining nucleic acid molecules and b) can replicate in a living cell, i.e., recombinant nucleic acids; (ii) nucleic acid molecules that are chemically or by other means synthesized or amplified, including those that are chemically or otherwise modified but can base pair with naturally occurring nucleic acid molecules, i.e., synthetic nucleic acids; or (iii) molecules that result from the replication of those described in (i) or (ii) above.

rDNARD: rDNA Registration Document

Synthetic DNA: Synthetic DNA segments which are likely to yield a potentially harmful polynucleotide or polypeptide are considered as equivalent to their natural DNA counterpart.

USDA: United States Department of Agriculture

Asst. VPR: Assistant Vice President for Research Compliance


 1United States Government Policy for Institutional Oversight of Life Sciences Dual Use Research of Concern