These notes are intended as a step by step guide to obtaining
human stem cells from the UK Stem Cell Bank.
These notes do not contain information on
importing or exporting human embryonic stem cell lines into or out
of the UK, or information relating to obtaining human embryonic
stem cells from sources other than the Bank, such as direct from UK
depositors. Detailed information on these areas, including route
maps, is contained in the Code of Practice for
the Use of Human Stem Cell Lines. It is assumed that the
requestor has completed all necessary steps and received all
necessary permissions to embark on the project for which stem cell
lines are required. This will include peer review of a project
summary and submission of copies of appropriate documentation that
may include ethical committee approval of the research, licensing
and accreditation by relevant national authorities for the work to
be undertaken and for the facilities in which it is conducted.
Step 1: Consult the UKSCB Catalogue of Stem Cell
By visiting the relevant sections of the UKSCB
website, you will find all stem cell lines currently available and associated costs, cell lines that are due to be made available as well as those
that have been received by the
If the cell lines you require are listed but
not yet available, you can enquire about likely availability by
emailing the Bank at the address given at the end of these notes.
If the cell lines you wish to use do not appear in the catalogue
you may wish to wait until they become available through the UKSCB
or consider alternative stem cell lines. Equally, you may contact the Bank to consult
associated costs if you consider obtaining multiple cell lines.
Step 2: Complete the Application Form.
The form "Application to
Access Human Stem Cell Line(s) from the UK Stem Cell Bank"
should be completed and sent to the UK Steering Committee at the
address given on the form. This form should not be sent to the
All enquiries concerning progress with the
application should be addressed to the UK Steering Committee
Secretariat. It is advisable to contact the named individual at the
MRC prior to completing the application form in order to confirm
what supporting documentation may be required by the UK Steering
Step 3: Contact with the Bank.
Once your application has been approved by the
UK Steering Committee, the MRC Secretariat will notify you through
its approval letter. This will be copied to the Bank and you should
expect to hear from a member of our team within the following two
However, in order to minimise delay, it is
advisable to contact the
Bank even before receiving your letter of approval.
A member of our team will be able to advise
you on associated costs, relevant legal agreements, resupply of
cell lines and alternative supply of
cells where the requested cell line is temporarily not
available. Alternatively, you may obtain such information by
visiting the relevant sections of the Bank's website.
Step 4: Complete and sign relevant
Subject to approval obtained by the UK
Steering Committee, you will be contacted by a member of the UKSCB
and you will be presented and asked to sign up to three copies of
the relevant documents required for the release of the cell
Cell lines are currently available from the
UKSCB under a Material Access Agreement (MAA) or a Research Use
Licence (RUL). You will be advised on which of those legal
agreements is required for the cell lines you requested. Additional
accompanying forms will need to be filled to ensure invoicing and
shipping of the cells.
All those documents named above will be
provided by the UKSCB in due course but you can also download them
for review from the Bank’s website.
Where an MAA is required, you will be advised
of an additional step to follow which involves the owner of the
requested cell line. A Material Use License (MUL) must be signed,
and the MUL signed copy should be presented to the Bank, before
cells can be released to you under the MAA.
The MUL is the agreement between you and the
owner/depositor of the stem cell line(s) you have requested. In
most cases the owner/depositor will provide a standard agreement
for you to sign. Details of who to contact for each cell line is
shown in the Stem Cell Catalogue by clicking the name of the
requested cell line(s). The MUL may include terms and conditions
relating to intellectual property and restrictions on the use to
which the cells may be put. You should read this agreement
carefully. Any negotiations relating to the MUL should be
undertaken with the owner/depositor of the cell line(s), not with
Step 5: Release of the cells from the
Subject to all documents being completed
successfully, you will be contacted by a member of the UKSCB team
to arrange shipping of the cells. At this moment, you will also be
provided with additional information supporting the culture of each
cell line. However, you are encouraged to contact the Bank for
further support in growing the cell lines successfully.
For enquires concerning the application process contact:
MRC general enquires: firstname.lastname@example.org
For all enquires regarding the accession process contact:
UKSCB general enquires: email@example.com
Signed documents should be returned to:
The UKSCB Business Manager, UK Stem
Cell Bank, NIBSC, Blanche Lane, South Mimms, Potters Bar,
Hertfordshire EN6 3QG, UK.