Health Sciences IRB

The Health Sciences Institutional Review Board (HS IRB) reviews, monitors and approve biomedical and social, behavioral, and educational research.

New Researchers and Research Coordinators: Request a Virtual Orientation with the IRB Staff!


As the next step in our goal to create one Tufts Medicine-wide IRB, the Lowell General Hospital Clinical Research Review Committee will be integrated with the Tufts Health Sciences IRB (Tufts HS IRB) to form one IRB. Tufts Health Sciences IRB now serves as the IRB for Lowell General as well as MelroseWakefield Healthcare. Please note that our health system is able to support specific types of research activity at Lowell General and MelroseWakefield at this time. For more details, please see the full announcement.

Human Subjects Research COVID-19 Guidance

Last Updated July 23, 2020

On March 13, 2020, face-to-face human subjects research was suspended given the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic and our shared goal to reduce the risk of infection within our community. The only exceptions at that time were for studies where there is the potential for direct benefit for the participant, if cancelling or postponing the activities would increase the risk to the subject’s safety or well-being, emergency use/compassionate use and Humanitarian Use Devices (HUDs).

For more information, see each institution’s current guidance on requirements for ramping up research:

Tufts Medical Center Guidance on Research Operations

Tufts University Human Subjects Research Guidance     


Full Accreditation Seal from AAHRPP

The Tufts Health Sciences Institutional Review Board (HS IRB) is federally mandated to review, monitor and approve biomedical and social, behavioral, and educational research. Our goal is to ensure that any research study under Tufts IRB jurisdiction is in compliance with federal, state, and institutional regulations. The Tufts Health Sciences IRB upholds the highest standards, ensuring compliance with ethical principles and regulatory requirements, while serving the Tufts community of scholars and administering a thorough review in a timely and efficient manner.

Scope & Authority

The Tufts Medical Center and Tufts University Health Sciences (TUHS) IRB has jurisdiction over the following:

  • Tufts Medical Center
  • Tufts Children's Hospital
  • MelroseWakefield Healthcare (MelroseWakefield Hospital and Lawrence Memorial Hospital)
  • Lowell General Hospital
  • New England Eye Center
  • Tufts University School of Medicine (TUSM)
  • Tufts University School of Dental Medicine (TUSDM)
  • Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
  • Jean Mayer U.S. Department of Agriculture Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University (HNRCA)
  • Friedman School of Nutrition


The Tufts Health Sciences IRB is divided into two IRBs, IRB-Red and IRB-Blue. Each IRB meets once a month. Each IRB is constituted and equipped to review any type of research study involving human subjects.

Faculty, Staff and Students

The IRB office is available to faculty, staff, and students conducting human subjects research at Tufts Medicine and Tufts University as a resource to provide guidance and assistance with protocol and informed consent form (ICF) development, research education and training, and information and direction on federal research-related regulations and guidance, state laws, and institutional policies.


The IRB office is available to assist investigators with the monitoring of research, preparation for site visits (for example, sponsor or FDA inspections), and to orient new researchers to human subject protection matters.

Study coordinators

The IRB office staff is also available to help provide orientation to new study coordinators, and to provide ongoing guidance to study coordinators.