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 to public health and safety, agricultural crops and other plants, animals, the environment, materiel, or national security.
The United States Government’s oversight of DURC is aimed at preserving 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 Research covered under the policy: This policy applies to research that involves both (1) one or more of the 15 agents or toxins listed in the 1 HHS Policy (the "DURC Agents") and (2) must produce, aim to produce, or can be reasonably anticipated to produce one or more of the 7 categories of experiments listed in the Health and Human Services (HHS) Policy.
- Avian influenza virus (highly pathogenic)
- Bacillus anthracis
- Botulinum neurotoxin (For purposes of this Policy, there are no exempt quantities of botulinum neurotoxin. Research involving any quantity of botulinum neurotoxin should be evaluated for DURC potential.)
- Burkholderia mallei
- Burkholderia pesudomallei
- 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
- Enhances the harmful consequences of the agent or toxin
- Disrupts immunity or 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 in the definition of DURC Agents above
- United States Government Policy for Oversight of Life Sciences Dual Use Research of Concern (March 2012)
- United States Government Policy for Institutional Oversight of Life Sciences Dual use Research of Concern (September 2014)
- Companion Guide to U.S. government policies for oversight of DURC
- FAQs on U.S. government policy for institutional oversight of life sciences DURC