Attitudes towards transfers of human tissue samples across borders: An international survey of researchers and policy makers in five countries
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Background: Sharing of tissue samples for research and disease surveillance purposes has become increasingly important. While it is clear that this is an area of intense, international controversy, there is an absence of data about what researchers themselves and those involved in the transfer of samples think about these issues, particularly in developing countries.
Methods: A survey was carried out in a number of Asian countries and in Egypt to explore what researchers and others involved in research, storage and transfer of human tissue samples thought about some of the issues related to sharing of such samples.
Results: The results demonstrated broad agreement with the positions taken by developing countries in the current debate, favoring quite severe restrictions on the use of samples by developed countries.
Conclusions: It is recommended that an international agreement is developed on what conditions should be attached to any sharing of human tissue samples across borders.