Leveraging the Experience of Canada’s Most Revered Review Partner

Advarra’s Canadian IRB is the largest central IRB in Canada and the only Canadian-based IRB to earn accreditation from the AAHRPP. Advarra® has the most extensive site reach in Canada and is led by industry-trained senior management professionals. The Canadian review service was founded in 1993 and is headquartered just outside Toronto with a second office in Montreal.

Studies that cross international borders can produce broad scientific insights, but different regulations for different authorities complicate study management. Advarra understands these difficulties, and we offer reviews that can bridge countries. Advarra operates fully within Canada’s Tri-Council Policy Statement for Research Involving Humans (TCPS), and we appreciate the differences between provinces.

Advarra has boards in Ontario and Quebec that handle Canada-specific research. Advarra’s Canadian IRBs are comprised of Canadian members only.

  • Native French and English speakers; multilingual support for English, French-Canadian, and Spanish languages, including translation services and document verification
  • 100% Canadian IRB membership
  • The only IRB/REB with official Canadian provincial recognition, able to service more of Canada than any other partner
  • Boards meet every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday, providing prompt turnaround consistent with other IRB services
  • Strong understanding of both Health Canada and US. FDA regulations
  • Single submission for cross-border Canadian and US studies
  • Ethical review of research and related services since 1993
  • Fully accredited by AAHRPP
  • Leverages Advarra’s industry-leading CIRBI® Platform, providing rapid reporting of IRB decisions
  • Local understanding of diverse client and research program needs

Leading Resources for Every Research Program

Knowledgeable, Committed, Professional

Advarra’s team goes the extra mile, taking the time to understand each client’s style and expectations. Our team can adapt to your situation, building a relationship based on trust and dependability.

IRBs to Meet the Needs of US and Canadian Researchers

Fully AAHRPP accredited, the Canadian IRB has decades of experience having reviewed thousands of projects across all types and phases of research.

Fully Aligned With Advarra’s CIRBI Platform

Advarra’s CIRBI Platform is the industry’s most advanced and proven online IRB platform. The CIRBI Platform enables real-time access to submit and track projects utilizing adaptive form technology, 24/7/365, from anywhere with internet access. Learn more about the CIRBI Platform.

Partnership Across Industries

Phase I Bioavailability/Bioequivalence (BA/BE) Research

Advarra understands the unique demands and requirements of fast-paced Phase I BA/BE research and its nuances in both Canada and the United States. Having partnered with many of North America’s largest and most successful clinics, Advarra’s reviewers facilitate rapid turnarounds while maintaining the highest quality in research participant protection, reliability, and service.

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Community-Based Research

Community-based research comprises a range of activities in health, education, social, and behavioral science as well as other disciplines designed to systematically gather important information about various aspects of the human condition. Most of these research projects employ qualitative research methodologies, or a mix of quantitative and qualitative methodologies, and often include special circumstances. Community-based research functions work best by engaging and collaborating with communities and their citizens, beginning with defining the research need through collaboration to completion of the research and communication of the results to the various stakeholders.

Advarra has broad experience in reviewing community-based research conducted in virtually every region of the globe; this experience is as diverse as the patient needs assessments, health determinants, and outcomes in various communities and strata of society. These include studies of substance abuse, domestic violence, problem gambling, human factors, and educational intervention innovation, among many others. These projects are often publicly funded or funded by the communities themselves with limited governmental or NGO support.

Review Solutions to Meet the Most Demanding Study Requirements

Minimal Risk Research: Expedited Review

Broadly speaking, minimal risk research is defined as research that poses no more risk to the participants than they would normally experience in daily life. Research that poses no more than “minimal risk” to participants among other considerations may be eligible to receive an expedited review. In this scenario, the research is reviewed by the IRB chair or one or more designated experienced ethics board members, instead of scheduling for a full IRB review at a convened board meeting.

A few examples of research projects that may qualify for expedited review include naturalistic observational studies (including certain types of post-marketing surveillance), retrospective chart reviews using anonymized data, prospective collection of biologic samples by non-invasive means (e.g., a mouth swab), research on individual or group characteristics or behavior (including, but not limited to, research on perception, cognition, motivation, identity, language, communication, cultural beliefs or practices, and social behavior), or research employing survey, interview, oral history, focus group, program evaluation, human factors evaluation, or quality assurance methodologies, etc.

IRB Exempt Research/Exemption Determinations

Certain types of research activities may be exempt from IRB review. According to US regulations, there are 8 categories under which the research may be exempt from IRB review. Similarly, there are specific Canadian criteria for what constitutes research, and what types of research require ethics review. To determine your research program’s designation, contact us.

Please note: There is no official registry for research ethics boards in Canada, though Advarra has official recognition on a provincial level and can conduct reviews in more provinces and territories in Canada than any other central IRB. All boards are federally registered in the United States with US FDA/OHRP. Advarra is a member of the Canadian Association of Research Ethics Boards (CAREB) and Public Responsibility in Medicine and Research (PRIM&R). All ethics committees of Advarra have been individually inspected and granted full accreditation by AAHRPP.

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