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Access Committee

The UK Biobank Access Committee

The Access Committee of the UK Biobank Board is responsible for making the key decisions about scientific access to the resource, notably those regarding the use of depletable samples or potentially contentious research.

Professor Sir Michael Ferguson chairs the UK Biobank Access Committee

Sir Michael Ferguson is Regius Professor of Life Sciences and Associate Dean of Research Strategy at the University of Dundee. He is a Director of the Dundee Proteomics Facility and the Discovery Centre.

Professor Sir Michael Ferguson

Professor Sir Michael Ferguson

Managing access

The process of reviewing research applications to use UK Biobank is managed by the UK Biobank Coordinating Centre, which conducts a set of standard checks and seeks advice on particular applications as required. Recommendations on each application are made by the UK Biobank Principal Investigator (or their designate) and are subject to confirmation by UK Biobank’s Access Committee. Applications that raise particular concerns (e.g. involve potentially contentious uses of the resource) will typically be referred to the Access committee or to UK Biobank’s Board.

The principles established to allow scientific access to UK Biobank are set out in the UK Biobank Ethics & Governance Framework. The detailed requirements of access are set out in the UK Biobank Access Procedures.

The functioning of the Access Procedures will be kept under review by the UK Biobank Principal Investigator (UKBPI), with UK Biobank’s Board and its Access Committee. Input from the participants, researchers, funders, UK Biobank Ethics Advisory Committee and other interested parties will be taken into account. UK Biobank’s Board will amend the Access Procedures as required on a periodic basis.

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