USC Stem Cell Research Oversight Committee (SCRO)

The SCRO reviews, approves, and provides oversight over all issues related to the derivation and use of human pluripotent stem cells as defined by federal and state law. Research under the SCRO’s jurisdiction may not commence until approved by the SCRO.

SCRO review is not required for non-human cells, and is not required if cells are not pluripotent. (Pluripotent means capable of differentiation into mesoderm, ectoderm and endoderm).

SCRO’s review is limited to review and approval for appropriate use of stem cells in the following circumstances:

  • Procurement or use of human oocytes
  • Use of human embryos
  • Derivation of a covered stem cell line
  • In vitro research using existing covered stem cell lines
  • Introduction of covered stem cells into animals or neural progenitor cells into the brains of animals at any state of embryonic, fetal or post-natal development
  • Introduction of covered stem cells into a live human

The SCRO also is empowered to monitor, audit, suspend and/or terminate research covered in this section.

Review by SCRO does not substitute for reviews that may be required by the Institutional Review Board (IRB), Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) or the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC).

Review Process

a. New Proposal Application:

Investigators with new proposals must complete the SCRO’s New Proposal Application and include a copy of the proposal submitted to the proposed funding agency.  These should be emailed to scro.cttee@med.usc.edu or michael.cowan@med.usc.edu .The SCRO may request additional information from the investigator(s) as deemed necessary to review the proposal in accordance with regulatory requirements.

b. Continuing Review Applications:

Investigators must submit a SCRO's Continuing Review Application at least annually or more frequently, as determined by the SCRO. These should be emailed to scro.cttee@med.usc.edu or michael.cowan@med.usc.edu .The SCRO may request additional information from the investigator(s) as deemed necessary to review the proposal in accordance with regulatory requirements.Annual continuing reviews for studies that have no or minor changes from the original application (as determined by the SCRO chair or designated approver) may be reviewed and approved administratively by the committee chair.

A decision is normally made within 30 days of application.