UCL Human Tissue Biobanks


Transferring Human Tissue

Under the Human Tissue Act 2006, the movement of all human tissue samples must be tracked.

An MTA is a legal contract that establishes the terms and conditions of the transfer of human tissue samples from the owner to a third party. It must ensure compliance by the recipient organisation with the UCL policy on storage, data protection, health and safety, distribution, return and disposal, security, traiing, audit and compliance with the Human Tissue Act.

Human tissue stored under an HTA licence should be transferred to a location also holding an HTA licence, unless there is provision in the recipient ethical approval.

Human tissue samples and / or data will only be released from the Biobank to external groups when the appropriate approval is in place and when a Material Transfer Agreement (MTA) has been signed by an authorised signatory. An MTA must be in place prior to receiving or sending out any human tissue samples.

Ethical approval from the Biobank will be conditional on the applicant providing a MTA, where relevant.

UCL Material Transfer Agreements (MTAs) requests are managed by the Research Contracts team within Research and Innovation Services. 
To view the UCL MTA transfer guidance and the process for raising a new request, visit UCL Material Transfer Agreements (MTA) guidance.