Research and CTB Data Access

Researchers interested in using material, information, or data for research purposes must submit a proposal via the online application system, accessed through the search function. Researchers can refine their search by sample type and/or data required and obtain an instant report on the availability of samples and data that match the search criteria. Interested researchers can submit a request for data and materials using an application form and enter key information on the research question, study design, laboratory and analytic methods, as well as researcher qualifications.
The CTB will communicate with researchers who submit a request, if the questions in their proposal have been addressed by previous projects or questions or is likely to produce results that complement other studies.
List of projects which have used or are using CTB materials
The CTB does not provide funding for research projects.

Evaluation of Applications

Applications are evaluated for scientific merit and appropriate use of CTB resources by a Review Panel comprised of scientists from the centers contributing samples (currently V.P. Komisarenko Institute of Endocrinology and Metabolism), the coordinating center, managed by the NCI, and other independent, multi-disciplinary senior researchers in the fields of thyroid cancer and radiobiological research.
Projects may be submitted at any time and the review procedures are, in most cases, completed by email. After evaluating applications according to the criteria below, each application will be: 1) approved for access, 2) returned with comments and reconsidered after the Principal Investigator responses to reviewers, or 3) rejected.

Criteria for Evaluation

Researchers applying for CTB samples and data must provide evidence that the following criteria are satisfied:
  • The research question is of considerable scientific and/or medical interest.
  • The study design is appropriate to address the question.
  • The requested sample size is sufficient to provide a good chance of answering the question.
  • The researcher and research team have appropriate qualifications and experience to conduct the study, including fluency with the accepted standards and quality control relevant to necessary laboratory analytical procedures as well as appropriate permissions from human subjects’ research and/or research ethics committees.
  • The researchers demonstrate familiarity with the relevant literature.
  • The proposed work cannot be undertaken without the data and/or materials of the type available through the CTB.
  • If case information other than the standard data set (date of birth, date of operation, sex, oblast of residence, calculated dose, and international Pathology Panel review diagnosis) are required, the costs of obtaining these data and ethical and consent should be adequately addressed.
  • The researchers can cover the costs of shipping the material.
  • The amounts of material requested are appropriate for the specified study, and not excessive, given the limited availability of material.
  • The research can be undertaken within the time consistent with the researchers funding and the availability of the necessary data and materials.
  • The researchers agree to share immediately with the CTB coordinating center any data that may be clinically relevant uncovered during the course of the study.
  • The researchers agree to provide within three months of the completion of their project a brief report on their work, including the results of their investigations on each sample studied, using the CTB sample code number. This report will not be disseminated beyond the CTB without the agreement of the Principal Investigator. The aim of the CTB is to maximize the value of the research data derived from the unique tissue collection and researchers are therefore required to submit their research data back to the CTB.
  • The researchers will inform the CTB coordinating center if any material has not been used in the performance of their study and will return this material, if requested, to the CTB coordinating center.
The researchers agree not to use the material for any purpose other than those explicitly proposed in their approved project, or to pass any material supplied by the CTB to third parties without the explicit permission of the CTB coordinating center.

Procedures for Approved Projects

Once approved, researchers will sign a Material and Data Transfer Agreement with the CTB Coordinating Center, then biospecimens and data will be sent to the researcher. Samples are provided free of charge, but shipping costs will be covered by the researchers. Where possible, material for a given project will be provided in one batch, however, in some cases, materials may be sent in stages.
Each sample will be accompanied by a minimum data set comprising the following information:
  • Age at accident - complying with HIPAA regulations
  • Age at surgical treatment - complying with HIPAA regulations
  • Sex
  • Oblast of residence
  • International Pathology Review Panel diagnosis
  • Estimated thyroid radiation dose (if requested)
Access to additional research data, if requested, may be made available. Additional clinical information may require collaboration with IEM and NCI.
Researchers are strongly encouraged to publish their data and are asked to ensure that the CTB is acknowledged in any publications arising from their study.
Principal Investigators who receive materials are required to:
  1. Agree to conform to the conditions set out in the Material and Data Transfer Agreement
  2. Notify the CTB coordinating center of any proposed modification of the number and size of samples required (modification dependent on approval and the availability of the material).