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Safety Manual and Guidelines

Drexel University resources

The Laboratory Safety page, which is maintained by the Drexel University Department of Health & Safety, includes links to a variety of useful and important lab safety-related documents, including:

The Drexel University Department of Health & Safety website is also an excellent starting place for answers to questions about laboratory and occupational safety.

The Select Agents Policies and Procedures Manual describes policies and procedures to be followed when research involves the use of substances and pathogens identified as select agents.

Federal Government resources
The NIH Guidelines provide details regarding “the practices for constructing and handling:  (i) recombinant nucleic acid molecules, (ii) synthetic nucleic acid molecules, including those that are chemically or otherwise modified but can base pair with naturally occurring nucleic acid molecules, and (iii) cells, organisms, and viruses containing such molecules.” The NIH Guidelines are maintained by the Office of Biotechnology Activities at the NIH.

The NIH Guidelines includes details on the classification of human disease-causing agents on the basis of hazard. In this classification system, etiologic agents are assigned to Risk Group 1 (RG1) through RG4 (with RG4 indicating the highest level of risk). A list of agents by Risk Group can be found in Appendix B of the NIH Guidelines.

The Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories (BMBL), which is published by the CDC, is an essential resource for establishing practices that address the safe use of infectious pathogens and hazardous biological materials in biomedical research. Practices outlined in the BMBL are founded on two basic

principles: containment and risk assessment. The BMBL includes practices appropriate for laboratory operations under Biosafety Level 1 (BSL-1) through BSL-4 containment.

The UBSC must also consider occupational regulations maintained by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The OSHA website includes a Laboratory Safety page, which includes information on working with small animals and using biological safety cabinets.