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How to Apply

Applicants will participate in a standardized approval process based on scientific merit, research impact, and sample availability. Contributing Investigator/Sample Owners will review the application packet to determine approval status.

Who is Eligible to Apply?

The Application Process

Next Steps

Reporting Citations and Acknowledgments

Basic Policies

Who is eligible to apply?

  • Investigators who have an IRB approved protocol and funding in place.
  • Students must have a mentor in place at time an application is submitted.

The Application Process

  1. To determine sample and data availability and to apply, visit the online web search at  For instructions, please view the user manual or these 3 instructional videos.
  2. In the online web search:
    1. Provide a brief abstract (1-2 pages) including your analysis plan, aims, intended use of samples, projected research/health impact.
    2. Provide a copy of your CV or NIH biosketch.
    3. Provide a copy of verification of your training in Human Subjects Protection.
  3. Once the online search application is submitted, it will be reviewed. Please email the Biobank Program Coordinator with any questions.

    Applicant Researchers will receive approval notification from the biobank coordinator in approximately 4 to 6 weeks.

    Next Steps

        • Confirm shipping/pick up details of approved samples and datasets with the biobank and sample owner.
        • Receive an invoice for cost recovery and any applicable shipping charges; payment is expected prior to pickup or shipping.
        • Execute a Material Transfer Agreement between yourself and the appropriate laboratory. See the Office of Sponsored Projects at or call 713-500-2968 for forms and further information.
        • Execute the Requestor Agreement Form which will be provided to you by the biobank.

    Reporting, citations, and acknowledgements

        • Approved researchers are expected to provide annual progress reports as well as final outcomes.
        • Approved researchers agree to use literature citations and acknowledgments as provided by the CCTS Biobank. See the “Citations and Acknowledgements” section for details.
        • Papers that use the support of NIH grants must be submitted to PubMed Central, which issues them a PMCID number in addition to the PubMed ID.
        • Newly discovered data (genotypes, biomarkers, laboratory results) are to be sent to the CCTS Biobank Coordinator for inclusion in the CCTS Biobank upon completion of the research project and publication of its main results.

    Basic policies regarding use and return of samples and data

      • Applicant Researchers who use the biobank samples agree not to transfer samples and data to other persons not under the direct supervision of the Applicant Researcher.
      • Applicant Researchers agree not to make any effort to identify individuals, families, communities, tribes or populations which are or may be the source of the samples and data.
      • Applicant Researchers agree not to combine or link the dataset provided with any other collection or source of information that may contain information specific to individuals.
      • New uses of the samples and data outside those described in their currently approved research project require submission of a new Sample and Data Use Agreement request.
      • When the research project is completed, the unused samples or remaining sample material will either be returned to the PI/Sample Owner at the Applicant Researcher’s expense, or discarded in compliance with all applicable statutes and regulations as directed by the PI/Sample Owner providing the samples.