PLEASE NOTE: MTAs for the transfer of Human Samples and the transfer of materials to/from international organizations must undergo a thorough review and approval process, which may take several weeks to complete. These transfers must be reviewed and approved by various internal departments, as well as extended review by the other party. These requirements align with the policies and procedures of each party involved and are beyond the control of CTTC.

Instruction for VU Faculty   Instruction for VUMC Faculty


Both requests for MTAs from University and Medical Center employees are managed by CTTC through the use of MTAShare. All individuals should request an MTA via the MTAShare link in the blue box above – whether sending or receiving materials.

Moreover, the University and Medical Center are now separate entities, so there is a need to track what was previously considered “internal transfers” between researcher labs at VU and VUMC. Requestors should use MTAShare to request such an “internal” materials transfer, but the process is abbreviated, so these requests can be submitted in a minute or two - please see Instructions boxes above. The exception to using the abbreviated form request is for (i) transfers of human tissue and fluid samples and stem cells, (ii) transfers of materials that originated from or are derived from 3rd party materials, and (iii) materials subject to export control – these transfers will proceed through the normal request process, irrespective of whether the transfer is internal or external.

It is also worth remembering that if you have received material from an outside party under an MTA, there may be restrictions on transferring that material to a lab that is not your own, including the lab “down the hall” where the researchers are employed by the same entity as you (VU or VUMC). If so, your colleague’s lab may need to get its own MTA in place with the outside providing party, not from you. Please contact CTTC if you have any questions about MTAs.

Automating Material Transfer Agreements

In the spring of 2014, Vanderbilt University launched MTAShare, an automated system for managing and processing Material Transfer Agreements. In the spring of 2021, MTAShare was redesigned on a new platform to enable other academic institutions and non-profit research organizations to use the system.  Watch the short video to the right and click here to see the benefits of this automated system and learn about future phases.

Is MTAShare available to other institutions?

MTAShare is now available to all academic and nonprofit institutions through license from Inteum, Inc. Please access the following link for details and to track the timeline for availability:

The level of automation of MTAShare scales with the number of users, so more users of MTAShare benefits all users.