Dual Use Research for Concern (DURC)
Dual Use Research of Concern (DURC) is life sciences research that, based on current understanding, can be reasonably anticipated to provide knowledge, information, products, or technologies that could be directly misapplied to pose a significant threat with broad potential consequences. These consequences could affect public health and safety, agricultural crops and other plants, animals, the environment, material, or national security.
The United States Government’s oversight of DURC aims to preserve the benefits of life sciences research while minimizing the risk of misuse of the knowledge, information, products, or technologies provided by such research.
Scope of Oversight
DURC is a subset of life sciences research, involving seven categories of experiments and 15 agents, that poses the greatest risk of deliberate misuse.
- Avian influenza virus (highly pathogenic)
- Bacillus anthracis
- Botulinum neurotoxin (any quantity)
- Burkholderia mallei
- Burkholderia pseudomallei
- Ebola virus
- Foot-and-mouth disease virus
- Francisella tularensis
- Marburg virus
- Reconstructed 1918 Influenza virus
- Rinderpest virus
- Toxin-producing strains of Clostridium botulinum
- Variola major virus
- Variola minor virus
- Yersinia pestis
DURC oversight is required for research that:
- Enhances the harmful consequences of the agent or toxin
- Disrupts immunity or the effectiveness of an immunization against the agent or toxin without clinical and/or agricultural justification
- Confers to the agent or toxin resistance to clinically and/or agriculturally useful prophylactic or therapeutic interventions against that agent or toxin or facilitates their ability to evade detection methodologies
- Increases the stability, transmissibility, or the ability to disseminate the agent or toxin
- Alters the host range or tropism of the agent or toxin
- Enhances the susceptibility of a host population to the agent or toxin
- Generates or reconstitutes an eradicated or extinct agent or toxin listed above
Self-Identifying Research as DURC
If you are working on a select agent or any quantity of Botulinum neurotoxin, you must submit a DURC screening form with your IBC application.
Administrative Policies & Procedures
Institutional Contact for DURC (ICDUR)
Gregory Park, Ph.D.
Assistant Director, Institutional Biosafety Committee