Cell Culture Laboratory Safety

In addition to the common safety risks in most daily workplaces (such as electrical and fire hazards), cell culture laboratories also have many specific hazards and risks related to the handling and manipulation of human or animal cells and tissues, and toxic, corrosive or mutagenic solvents. Reagents. Common hazards are accidental punctures of syringe needles or other contaminated sharps, spills and splashes on the skin and mucous membranes, ingestion through oral pipetting, and inhalation of infectious aerosols.

The basic goal of any biosafety program is to reduce or eliminate the exposure of laboratory staff and the external environment to potentially harmful biological agents. The most important safety factor in cell culture laboratories is strict compliance with standard microbiological practices and techniques.

1. Biosafety level
U.S. regulations and recommendations on biosafety are contained in the “Biosafety in Microbiology and Biomedical Laboratories” document prepared by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and published by the U.S. Department of Health service. This document defines four ascending levels of containment, called biosafety levels 1 to 4, and describes microbiological practices, safety equipment, and facility protection measures for the corresponding risk levels associated with handling specific pathogens.

1.1 Biosafety Level 1 (BSL-1)
BSL-1 is a basic level of protection common in most research and clinical laboratories, and is suitable for reagents that are known to not cause disease in normal and healthy humans​​.

1.2 Biosafety Level 2 (BSL-2)
BSL-2 is suitable for medium-risk drugs known to cause human diseases of different severity through ingestion or through transdermal or mucosal exposure. Most cell culture laboratories should achieve at least BSL-2, but the specific requirements depend on the cell line used and the type of work performed

1.3 Biosafety Level 3 (BSL-3)
BSL-3 is suitable for native or foreign pathogens with known aerosol transmission potential, as well as pathogens that may cause serious and potentially fatal infections.

1.4 Biosafety Level 4 (BSL-4)
BSL-4 is suitable for individuals with high-risk and untreated foreign pathogens that cause life-threatening diseases through infectious aerosols. These agents are limited to highly confined laboratories.

2. Safety Data Sheet (SDS)
A safety data sheet (SDS), also known as a material safety data sheet (MSDS), is a form that contains information about the properties of specific substances. The SDS includes physical data such as melting point, boiling point, and flash point, information about the toxicity, reactivity, health effects, storage and disposal of the substance, as well as recommended protective equipment and procedures for handling leaks.

3. Safety Equipment
Safety equipment in cell culture laboratories includes major barriers, such as biosafety cabinets, closed containers, and other engineering controls designed to eliminate or minimize exposure to hazardous materials, and personal protective equipment (PPE) that is usually combined with major protective equipment. Biological safety cabinets (ie cell culture hoods) are the most important equipment, which can control infectious splashes or aerosols produced by many microbial procedures and prevent your own cell culture from being contaminated.

4. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a direct barrier between people and dangerous agents. They include items for personal protection, such as gloves, lab coats and gowns, shoe covers, boots, respirators, face shields, safety glasses or goggles . They are usually used in conjunction with biological safety cabinets and other equipment containing reagents or materials being processed.

Post time: Feb-01-2023