Active Research Protocols

Research protocols (RPs) are an essential component of the research discipline and documentation at RERF. A proposed research protocol is reviewed by a Research Cluster*, external scientific reviewers, the Ethics Committee, and if necessary, the Committee on Biosamples, Recombinant DNA Experiment Safety Committee, and Experimental Animal Care Committee, and finally approved by the Executive Committee. Through such procedures for internal and external scientific review, this system provides assurance of scientific relevance and guards against the exploitation of human subjects, and ensures that high standards of ethics and privacy are met. Acceptance of a research protocol proposing a new investigation signifies that a general consensus at RERF has been obtained, that the work will be conducted as planned, and that the work will undergo revision based on subsequent agreement.

Scientific review by a Research Cluster and by outside reviewers permits examination of the purpose of each new proposal in relation to current scientific needs for information, scientific quality, and relevance to RERF’s mission and priorities.

*RERF introduced a new research protocol structure made up of Research Clusters in 2017. The previous system involved several major hurdles, such as research protocols being conducted on a departmental basis, resulting in occasional failure to transcend departmental boundaries even for research programs that required broad collaboration. The new system of Research Clusters was created to resolve this issue. In the new system, research scientists from different departments combine to form teams that leverage their strengths for approaching diverse research themes from multiple perspectives. In this system, research areas have been arranged into three categories: Cancer, Non-cancer, and Genetics. Platform Protocols, however, are excluded from this new categorization. The new system was approved by the Scientific Advisory Committee in March 2017 and the Board of Councilors in June 2017.

Research protocols are categorized by research program. Titles of active RPs, linked to their summaries, can be found under their respective program categories. Please select a highlighted category below.

Platform Protocols

A few research protocols are called “platform protocols,” because they involve large-scale, long-term programs.


Starting in 2017 (after initiation of Research Cluster system)


Through 2016 (before initiation of Research Cluster system)