Terms & Conditions
- By placing the order, the customer contracts VectorBuilder to deliver services/products as listed in the corresponding order at the specified price.
- If the terms and conditions here conflict with separate agreements between the customer and VectorBuilder (e.g. MSA, SOW, etc.), the latter should predominate.
- Except specifying in supplementary agreement, our default payment term is Net30.
- Estimated turnaround time is defined as the time from initiation to completion of production, which does not include the time required to obtain and QC customer-provided materials, or the time to ship final deliverables to the customer.
- If the order contains several services that must occur sequentially, the turnaround time given for a service does not include the time needed to complete the preceding services (e.g. the virus packaging turnaround time does not include the time for cloning the viral vector used for virus packaging).
- We will strive to meet the estimated turnaround time, but cannot fully rule out unforeseen circumstances that might cause delays (e.g. a vector is difficult to construct due to its toxicity to host E. coli or tendency to rearrange, or a virus is difficult to achieve expected titer due to the GOI expression giving rise to cell toxicity, virion instability, or its interference with the packaging progress). Should this occur, we will try our best minimize the delay. We are not responsible for any shipment-related delays as they are outside of our control.
- Our custom-built plasmid vectors are intended to match the designed sequences for small- to medium-sized vectors. On rare occasions however, the finished vector could contain slight differences from the original design in nonfunctional regions due to changes in cloning strategy. Should this occur, we will consider the vector as fulfilling our contractual obligation, and will notify the customer of the revised sequence. Very rarely, functional regions of a vector could contain mutations relative to the original design due to sequence polymorphisms in our template DNA used during vector cloning. Should this happen, we will notify the customer of the revised sequence. If the mutations are silent coding changes, we will consider the vector as fulfilling our contractual obligation. If the mutations are non-silent coding changes or are in noncoding functional regions, we will give the customer the option to remake the vector without additional charge. Please note that because some of our templates originate from natural sequences such as cDNA, any polymorphisms on them, including non-silent coding changes, should be compatible with function. For very large vectors (e.g. BAC, adenovirus, HSV and vaccinia virus), the actual sequence may differ from the theoretical sequence in regions not essential for the intended use of the vector such as the backbone.
- The price of a vector is often based on the assumption that template DNA needed for cloning such as cDNA is already in our possession or can be obtained with minimal cost. In rare cases, this assumption could turn out to be incorrect, in which case we have to synthesize the template de novo at a much higher cost. Should this happen, we will inform the customer of the higher cost. The customer can choose to cancel the vector or proceed with the higher cost. In the latter case, we will send the customer a supplemental quote for the additional cost.
- When customer-provided material is required for completing the service (e.g. DNA template for vector cloning, viral vector for virus packaging, cell line for stable cell line generation, etc.), the customer should follow the guidelines under menu item "Support" > "Materials Submission Form" to prepare and send the material to VectorBuilder. The customer is fully responsible for the identity of the material supplied. Although VectorBuilder will perform standard QC of the customer-provided material before initiating production, such QC may not be able to fully validate the identity of the material. Should any production or post-sales issues arise due to the incorrectness of the material (e.g. template DNA mutations relative to the theoretical sequence), VectorBuilder is not responsible for such issues.
- In rare cases of highly risky projects, partial or full nonrefundable payments may be required depending on risk levels prior to project initiation. Customer approval will be requested before initiating such projects. We will make every effort to complete the projects successfully, including redos and alternative approaches where appropriate. But given the risky nature of such projects, success will not be guaranteed.
- While we have done extensive R&D work to optimize our vectors, it remains possible that a vector will not perform as intended due to biological complexity of the vector or the model system in which it is applied. We therefore cannot guarantee particular biological outcome of the vectors we produce, including expression, protein function, knockout, knockdown, etc. Here, vectors refer to all the vehicles used to deliver genetic materials into cells and organisms, including but not limited to plasmids, BACs, mRNAs, viruses and chemically packaged DNA and RNA.
- For virus packaging service, our titer guarantee only applies to vectors for which the region being packaged into virus is below the recommended upper range for each type of viral vector (see table below). For sizes over this range, it may still be possible to package the vector into virus, but undesired effects may occur.
Virus Type Upper Limit of Viral Genome Effect of Oversized Genome Single-stranded adeno-associated virus (ssAAV) 4.7 kb (from 5’ ITR to 3’ ITR) Region packaged into the virus may be truncated and result in loss-of-function. Self-complementary adeno-associated virus (scAAV) 2.35 kb (from 5’ ITR to 3’ ITR) Region packaged into the virus may be truncated and result in loss-of-function. Adenovirus (Ad5 and Chimeric Ad5/F35) 38.7 kb (from 5’ ITR to 3’ ITR) The adenoviral genome may be unstable, and rearrangement may occur during packaging. Lentivirus 9.2 kb (from 5’ LTR-ΔU3 to 3’ LTR-ΔU3) Titer may be reduced. MMLV retrovirus 8.3 kb (from MMLV 5' LTR to MMLV 3' LTR) Titer may be reduced. MSCV retrovirus 8.3 kb (from MSCV 5' LTR to MSCV 3' LTR) Titer may be reduced. Vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) 14.5 kb (from N gene to L gene) Titer may be reduced.
Additionally, we are not able to guarantee titer for the following vectors:
- Vectors containing sequences that could adversely affect the packaging process such as toxic genes (e.g. proapoptotic genes), genes that compromise the integrity of packaging cells or virus (e.g. membrane proteins that cause cell aggregation), and sequences prone to rearrangements or secondary structures (e.g. repetitive or highly GC-rich sequences).
- Packaging of customer-supplied vector because we have no control over the quality of the vector and the compatibility of the vector with our packaging system.
- AAV serotypes 3, 4, 6, and 6.2 tend to have lower yields than other serotypes. As such, we can only guarantee 50% of the minimum titers specified in the table for these serotypes.
- VectorBuilder offers a knockdown guarantee for shRNA (3+1) virus packaging services. If none of VectorBuilder's top 3 recommended shRNAs achieve 70% or higher knockdown efficiency for the target gene of interest (GOI), customers can receive store credit rebate equal to 1/3 of the service price. Please note that customers are required to choose the top 3 recommended shRNAs for the guarantee to be applicable.
- If an order cannot be completed due to unforeseen biological difficulties (e.g. the vector to be constructed contains highly unstable sequences, or the virus to be packaged carries a toxic gene, or the cell line to be engineered can hardly survive after the loss-of-function of an essential gene), or if an order cannot be fulfilled using customer-supplied materials for any reason (e.g. the viral vector from the customer cannot be properly packaged into virus), the customer is responsible for paying for the portion of the order that has been performed irrespective of outcome. If the customer makes new requirements not stipulated in the original order, we may try but cannot promise to fulfill such requirements, and we may ask the customer to share any added cost.
- Customers canceling projects are only eligible for store credit covering the portion of the project that has not been performed. Customers can also purchase store credit, which is nonrefundable and does not expire. It can be used to buy any VectorBuilder products and services. For customers with unknown or compromised credit history, we reserve the right to request partial or full payment for their purchase orders (POs) before initiation of work or shipment of final deliverable. Orders containing expensive or difficult projects may also require partial or full payment before initiation of work.
- Upon completion and delivery of the order, VectorBuilder usually archives any leftover products for up to 6 months without guaranteeing the product condition, unless specified in a separate agreement with the customer. It is the customer’s responsibility to properly maintain the products in their possession.
- During production of the order, VectorBuilder may ask the customer for critical input in order to continue with production. If the customer fails to respond within 30 days, VectorBuilder may terminate the order and invoice the customer for the cost incurred up to the full order value.
- By placing the order, the customer acknowledges that they have not knowingly requested the creation of materials by VectorBuilder that are pathogenic, infectious or toxic, or otherwise pose a risk to human health and public safety. The customer further acknowledges that their research utilizing VectorBuilder's deliverables is not intended for biological weapons development, is conducted in an ethical manner, and in full compliance with applicable laws and regulations.
- To track shipping status of the items in your order, please go to VectorBuilder website and visit menu item "Support" > "Track Shipment".
- For additional terms and conditions, please refer to VectorBuilder website, under menu item "Support" > "Legal Information".