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Terms of engagement: transfer of biological materials for research in Australia

Whitton, TC, Nielsen, J ORCID: 0000-0002-3005-0047 and Nicol, D ORCID: 0000-0002-6553-2839 2019 , 'Terms of engagement: transfer of biological materials for research in Australia' , Journal of Law and Medicine, vol. 27 , pp. 338-354 .

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The shift from basic science to potentially more lucrative applied science andcommercialisation has had a profound impact on sharing biological materialsfor research purposes. Free exchanges of ideas and research materials havebecome cloaked in contractual obligations, driven by commercialisation andimpact policies, particularly through material transfer agreements (MTAs).There has been no analysis of the terms included in MTAs routinely used byAustralian universities and research institutes for the transfer of biologicalmaterials for research. This study analyses terms from 45 MTAs used byAustralian universities and research organisations as well as commonstandard agreements. Our findings suggest that drafters need to refocus MTAterms to the purpose behind which materials are exchanged. Terms need tobe directed primarily towards compatibility with the research effort rather thanthe remote possibility of future commercial and translational opportunities.This refocusing should simplify MTA terms, expediting materials transfer andsupporting research.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Whitton, TC and Nielsen, J and Nicol, D
Keywords: material transfer agreements, biological transfers, Australia, standard agreements, simplified agreements, drafting terms
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Law and Medicine
Publisher: Lawbook Co.
ISSN: 1320-159X
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