Electronic Helper for Materials Exchange

Wading through technology-transfer paperwork is not most scientists' idea of fun. However, a new site on the World Wide Web can help intramural researchers streamline the process of sharing biological materials with colleagues at other institutions. The Web site, maintained by the Association of University Technology Managers, Inc., allows scientists to quickly determine whether an outside institution has signed the Uniform Biological Materials Transfer Agreement (UBMTA)-a nationwide accord to facilitate scientific exchanges that was reached last March under the leadership of NIH's Office of Technology Transfer. If an outside colleague's institution has signed the UBMTA, the only paperwork required for an exchange of biological materials is a letter, called an "implementing" letter, that must be signed by both parties certifying that both work at signatory institutions. For more information on this process, contact the technology development coordinator at your institute, center, or division. To access the UBMTA database, launch a Web browser, such as Netscape or Mosaic, and type the following Uniform Resource Locator (URL) in the Open Location or Open URL box: http://autm.rice.edu/autm .

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