Gene Technology at UNSW
Gene technology is the term given to a range of activities concerning the manipulation of genetic material such as gene expression, genetic modifications and gene transfers. Whilst it presents exciting opportunities for agriculture, medical and scientific research, the development and use of gene technology and genetically modified organisms (GMOs) involves real and perceived risks to poeple and the environment.
In Australia, the Gene Technology Act 2000 was set out to protect the health and safety of people, and to protect the environment, by identifying risks posed by or as a result of gene technology, and manage them through a regulatory framework.
Organisations that conduct gene technology are required to have an Institutional Biosafety Committee (the IBC) or have access to one. The IBC is comprised of local members having the relevant expertise to assist people within the organisation in the identification and management of risks associated with GMO dealings including any containment measures for GMOs involved in the dealings and the classification of dealings with GMOs in accordance with the Regulations.