Facilitate your Scientific Progress

Moving your research to/from UVA

Your primary point person at either side of a move to another institution should be your department/center administrator, who can help you negotiate legal and regulatory hurdles and make the move somewhat smoother.  Please consider the following:

  • Personnel.  If research staff will accompany you to UVA, your administrator and UVA Human Resources will ensure appropriate hiring and onboarding.
  • External research awards.  If you will transfer active sponsored awards, the SOM Office of Grants and Contracts and its counterpart at your current institution will work with the sponsor to transfer them to/from UVA.  Initiate this process as soon as you have accepted your offer to reduce disruptions in support.  See specific information on transfer of NIH awards between institutions.
  • Equipment.  Transfer of research equipment to another institution depends on the source of funds used to purchase it.  In general, UVA allows the transfer of equipment purchased using federal funds if the project will continue at the new institution, but not the transfer of equipment purchased with institutional funds or state.  Use UVA Form P-1 to request transfer of equipment from UVA (contact:  Office of Grants and Contracts).
  • Research animals.  Contact the  Center for Comparative Medicine (CCM) if you intend to ship animals to or from the University.  Animals arriving at UVA must undergo quarantine to reduce the risk of pathogens entering our vivaria.  The CCM web site provides procedures for shipments to UVA and shipments to other institutionsShipments of research animals to other institutions require material transfer agreements (contact the Office of Grants and Contracts).  The Genetically Engineered Murine Model Core can cryopreserve animal lines, for subsequent reconstitution.
  • Data.  In general, data generated at an academic institution are owned by that entity.  If you wish to transfer data to UVA, check with your current institution concerning its policies.  Under UVA policy Laboratory Notebook and Recordkeeping, the Vice President for Research must approve the transfer of any data.  Please note that information (in whatever format) that you received under a confidentiality agreement may not be taken with you – your new institution should work with the originating entity to create a new confidentiality agreement if you wish to access those documents after you leave UVA.  Similarly, if you wish to transfer clinical research data, contact the cognizant IRB concerning restrictions and procedures.
  • Intellectual property (IP).
    • Transfer of IP you developed at your current institution requires a Material Transfer Agreement (MTA; contact office:   Office of Grants and Contracts).
    • Your own IP that has been licensed to a company, but which you wish to continue to use in your non-commercial research:  the UVA Licensing and Ventures Group will work on a license to/from UVA.
    • IP that has been partially developed at your current institution, but will continue to be developed at your new institution:  same contacts as above; the two institutions will negotiate sharing of ownership and license income from existing vs. future IP.
    • IP that you previously had received under MTA, and wish to move to your new institution:  your new institution should request these materials from the original source, rather than effecting a secondary transfer.  Make a list of the materials that you wish to transfer, their originating institutions and contact investigators, and work with SOM Grants and Contracts and the technology office at your other institution to negotiate new MTAs.

An excellent resource for managing one’s career and research group

Making the Right Moves,” published by The Burroughs Wellcome Fund and The Howard Hughes Medical Institute, covers negotiating one’s employment contract, the structure of academic institutions, staffing a research group, time and project management, etc.  A must-read for postdoctoral fellows and young faculty.

UVA research core facilities

The School of Medicine supports several state-of-the-art core facilities for its investigators.  A portion of the operating budget for each is obtained from the School of Medicine ; the remainder is generated by user fees.  These facilities are overseen by Jay W. Fox, PhD (Associate Dean for Research Infrastructure); their descriptions and web sites are listed at the Office of Research Core Administration.

Research animal facilities

The  Center for Comparative Medicine maintains AAALAC-accredited facilities to support research involving animals.  Services include training, veterinary support, animal housing, embryonic cryopreservation (via the Gene Targeting and Transgenic Facility), etc.  The Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) oversees all animal use, approves animal use protocols, inspects both laboratories and vivaria, and provides training in the use of animals in research.

The UVA Cross Campus Grid (XCG)

can run applications that need to be executed thousands of times, or jobs that are too large to run on your current computer system.  Jobs on the XCG are distributed to processors throughout the Grid and are executed concurrently.  The XCG has access to approximately 1700 cores and can run jobs compiled statically in C/C++, Fortran, or Matlab. It can also run small parallel jobs that use the MPI (Message passing Interface) libraries.

Equipment maintenance

The University has a service contract with NovaMed, which covers a wide range of research equipment.  Equipment covered by this contract includes:  refrigerated ultracentrifuges; microcentrifuges; HPLCs; beta scintillation counters; gamma counters; low temperature freezers/coldrooms; autoclaves; diagnostic imaging equipment; ice machines; dishwashers; and dish dryers.



Training grants at UVA

The SOM Graduate Programs Office maintains an updated list of current and pending NIH T-series training grants supporting pre- and post-doctoral fellows and other documents that are useful in the development of federal training grant proposals (click on “UVA School of Medicine Training Grant Support”).

Data management and record retention

Contact the UVA Office of Records Management for additional information.

Grant & contract records.  NIH generally requires that files resulting from sponsored research be retained for at least three years after the final financial report has been filed.  Commonwealth of Virginia record retention regulations are more strict and require that such records be retained five years after filing of the final financial report of a funding period (e.g., a four-year R01).  See the paragraph on retention, below.

Research data

In addition to maintaining accurate and complete records for data analysis, investigators must manage other records relating to the conduct of the project, such as management of research funds, and the development of intellectual property.  There are four aspects of data management and protection that are critical to the responsible conduct of research:

  • Ownership.  All forms of data resulting from University sponsored projects are the property of the University.  If an investigator leaves UVA, he or she may transfer the data to another institution, if approved by the Vice President for Research.
  • Collection.  Data may be collected in a number of ways:  electronically, manually, by taped interview, etc.  It is critical that the original recording and subsequent transcriptions of those data be accurate and reliable.  You and your staff should agree upon data recording and transcription techniques.  Standard Operating Procedures (detailed instructions permitting uniformity in performing specific activities) are helpful to maintain consistency across members of a research group.  The collection and transcription of clinical research data are governed by Good Clinical Practice (as described at http://www.fda.gov/downloads/Drugs/…/Guidances/ucm073122.pdf).
  • Security.  Make sure that your data are backed up, with a copy stored off-site.  (If your computer is on a local area network, your files already are being backed up routinely by your LAN administrator.)  Protection of data also includes restricting unauthorized access to clinical data, and ensuring that such data are used only as approved by the IRB.  UVA policy IRM-015 defines the conditions under one may electronically store highly sensitive data, including PHI.
  • Sharing.  Investigators must balance the reasons not to share (i.e., to protect intellectual property rights, allow priority in publication, or protect the privacy of research subjects) with the benefits of sharing data (to move the field ahead, allow replication of experiments, or satisfy legal or funding agency requirements).  It is generally agreed that prior to publication, investigators are not required to share proprietary materials.  After publication, unless constrained contractually, investigators should share with their colleagues at other institutions.  Certain journals require that authors share with members of the scientific community for noncommercial purposes any biological materials that are newly described in a publication.  For policies governing NIH-sponsored research, see its data sharing policy site.
  • Retention.  UVA data must be retained to confirm research findings, establish priority of inventorship, for potential fraud investigations, for use in the FDA licensure process, etc.  UVA policy requires that raw data be retained for at least five years after project completion (i.e., publication or termination of research support, whichever comes first) unless otherwise required by contract, law, regulation.  Do not underestimate the benefits of retaining data or specimens:  for example, the gene sequence of pandemic Spanish influenza in 2005 was derived, in part, from preserved lung tissue retained at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology since 1918!  Please refer to the UVA records management site.

FDA regulations require that clinical study documents be retained until at least 2 years after the last approval of a marketing application and there are no pending or contemplated marketing applications, or at least 2 years have elapsed since clinical development of the product has been discontinued.  Regulatory requirements or contractual agreement with the sponsor may increase this interval.

Investigational Drug Service

This office, a service of the Medical Center, supports clinical drug trials in many ways, from study design and submission of IND applications, to drug preparation, storage, logging, and dispensing.  Contact the IDS at 982-1048.