Embryonic Stem Cell Research Oversight (ESCRO)

The goal of the Embryonic Stem Cell Research Oversight (ESCRO) committee is to provide oversight of all issues related to derivation and use of hESC lines and to facilitate education of investigators involved in hESC research. This committee includes representatives of the public and persons with expertise in developmental biology, stem cell research, molecular biology, assisted reproduction, and ethical and legal issues in hESC research. The ESCRO committee should:

1. Provide oversight over all issues related to derivation and use of hESC lines.

2. Review and approve the scientific merit of research protocols.

3. Review compliance of all in-house hESC research with all relevant regulations and these guidelines.

4. Maintain registries of hESC research conducted at the institution and hESC lines derived or imported by institutional investigators.

5. Facilitate education of investigators involved in hESC research


Research that is permissible after notification of the research institution’s ESCRO committee:

  • Purely in vitro hESC research with pre-existing coded or anonymous hESC lines.


Research that is permissible only after additional review and approval by an ESCRO committee

  • Attempted derivation of new hESC lines
  • All research involving the introduction of hESC lines into nonhuman animals
  • Research in which personally identifiable information about the donors is readily ascertainable by the investigator
  • Research that should not be permitted at this time.
  • Research involving in vitro culture of any intact human embryo, regardless of derivation method, for longer than 14 days or until formation of the primitive streak begins, whichever occurs first.
  • Research in which hESCs are introduced into nonhuman primate blastocysts or in which any embryonic stem cells are introduced into human blastocysts.
  • No animal into which hESCs have been introduced at any stage of development should be allowed to breed.

All investigators that plan to initiate work with hESCs need to obtain ESCRO authorization. Investigators with NYSTEM grants need to apply for ESCRO permission to conduct induced pluripotent stem cell research as well. Embryonic Stem Cell Research Oversight Committee (ESCRO) requires you to fill out an ESCRO Authorization Form and attach NIH-style biosketch and MTA forms and e-mail the forms to:

Rebecca Banchik, BA, CIP
Assistant Director of Operations
Program for the Protection of Human Subjects (PPHS)
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

One Gustave L. Levy Place, Box 1081

New York, NY 10029-6574
Phone: (212) 824-8202