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Stronger Rules

China is bolstering its regulations regarding scientific studies that rely on genetic or other material from Chinese individuals, Reuters reports.

It adds that China is to require any foreign institute or company that wishes to work with Chinese material partner with Chinese researchers. China is to also limit what samples can leave the country — Reuters notes that China is increasingly viewing its genetic material as an important resource that needs to be better managed.

"These regulations are formed to effectively protect and rationally use our country's human genetic resources, protect public health, national security, and society's public interests," the State Council says in a statement, according to Reuters.

Last November, BGI revealed that it had been fined in 2015 for having illegally conducted a genetics study with the University of Oxford that involved sending genetic data out of China.

Additionally, the State Council announced last year that scientific data generated within China must first be deposited in an approved repository there prior to publication.