Every member in BJEA_China has learned basic lab access and rules. Besides, we put personal biosecurity at high priority when working through our experiments. We arrange members to be in charge of the daily cleaning of lab equipment and safety check. Our team set up detail rules towards equipment usages, waste management and specific procedures that help us maintain lab safety. And we also set a supervisor to check up all the aspects at the end of the day in order to guarantee our lab safety. Under the guidance of our teachers and the consultation of our team members, we set up few penalty rules for members who did not follow basic lab safety, for the overall purpose of increasing the efficiency in lab safety management.
The three E.coli strains our team used to design are in biosafety level 1, including E.coli DH5alpha, used for molecular cloning to obtain recombinant plasmids, E.coli BL21 used for protein expression and purification to obtain target proteins, and B.subtilis BS168 used for the expression of the protein. All three strains are the most common used chassis in the iGEM white list, and all of our members have been trained with basic rules to work with them. No organism can cause infection or adverse health effects or symptoms. The E.coli we build may release antibiotic-resistant genes into the environment, and the antibiotic-resistant genes may transfer to other bacteria, causing potential biological harm to the environment. But since all safety procedures are followed and all work related to living organisms is done in the laboratory, this is highly unlikely.
During the SDS electrophoresis of protein gel, physical contact with acrylamide might lead to chemical poisoning. Our team makes sure that every member before contacting with acrylamide need to wear a mask, in addition to lab-gown and gloves. In addition, the use of nucleic acid gel and nucleic acid dye may also have potential harm to our body. Every member in our team operate it in the special area, and we wear gloves and PE gloves for protection.
Our team instructor is responsible for the security of our biological laboratory and she is well acquainted with these experiments. She has sufficient experiences in dealing with bacteria, so they are fully aware of the risks and are capable of managing them and ensuring our experiment is carried out safely. In addition, all our team members have passed the bio-safety training and testing required by laboratory assistants and engineers, and only after passing the tests can we conduct experiments. Our members all following the rules and operating safely according to the safety regulations by learning to conduct standard experiments, this ensures that nothing can escape from our laboratories. In the event of an accident, we can deal with the problem in accordance with the relevant safety regulations to prevent further problems.
For any visitors that come to our lab, we taught them basic lab rules, and giving them safety protection tools such as lab-gowns and gloves.