Research Protections Policies
RP14 Human Embryonic (Pluripotent) Stem Cell Research
Subject Matter Expert:
Policy Steward:Associate Vice President for Research, Director of the Office for Research Protections>
This policy sets forth standards for and outlines the mechanism used by The Pennsylvania State University (“University”) to evaluate and oversee research involving human embryonic stem cell (hESC) lines as well as human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC lines), collectively referred to as human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) herein. The fundamental aim of this policy is to ensure that all hPSC research conducted at or by the University or using University resources is in accordance with the National Institutes of Health Guidelines on Human Stem Cell Research (“NIH Guidelines”), the National Academies’ “Guidelines for Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research” (2010) (“NAS Guidelines”), all applicable federal and state laws and regulations, and the ethical standards of the University.
This policy is applicable to all hPSC Research activities conducted at or by the University or using University resources regardless of funding and applies to all University campus locations.
ESCRO Committee - Purpose
ESCRO Committee – Composition
Allowable hPSC Research
- hESC Lines that are included on the NIH Embryonic Stem Cell Registry, or
- Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSC).
Human Embryonic Stem Cells (hESC): Self-replicating cells derived from human embryos that are capable of dividing without differentiating for a prolonged period in culture, and are known to develop into cells and tissues of the three primary germ layers. Although hESCs are derived from embryos, such stem cells are not themselves human embryos.
Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSC): adult cells that have been genetically reprogrammed to an embryonic stem cell-like state by being forced to express genes and factors important for maintaining the defining properties of embryonic stem cells.
Human Pluripotent Stem Cells (hPSC): Term collectively referring to hESCs and iPSCs herein.
Submission forms and instructions for all University campuses can be obtained from the ORP website.
For questions, additional detail, or to request changes to this policy, please contact the Office of the Associate Vice President for Research, Director of the Office for Research Protections.
- Final Report of the National Academies’ Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research (2010)
- Guidelines for Stem Cell Research and Clinical Translation, International Society for Stem Cell Research (2021)
- National Institutes of Health Guidelines on Human Stem Cell Research (2009)
- Title 18 Pa.C.S.A. §3216.
Other University Policies may have specific application and should be referred to, especially
RP03 - The Use of Human Participants in Research (Formerly Policy RA14)
RP04 - Care and Use of Vertebrate Animals (Formerly Policy RA15)
RP11 - Use of Regulated and Biohazardous Materials in Research and Instruction
Most recent changes:
- March 18, 2022 - Updated Reference #2; minor editoral edits.
Revision History (and effective dates) :
- May 20, 2021 - New policy.
Date Approved:May 20, 2021>
Date Published:May 20, 2021>