Team:ASIJ Tokyo/Safety


Our lab at ASIJ is classified as Biosafety Level 1. This year the only type of organism we used was NEB 5-Alpha Competent K-12 E. Coli. Since these are lab grade E.coli and all plates/tubes containing E. coli were autoclaved before disposal, this posed no risks to our colleagues or community.

Furthermore, we follow the standard University lab safety for Japan, JNIOSH, the implementation of which was overseen by our building safety officer, Mr. Bhupesh Upadhyay. More information about JNIOSH can be found here.

In the lab, we have standard fire and earthquake safety measures. For biological safety, we have an Eye Wash Station, Autoclave, Incubator, and PCR workstation with working HEPA filters. In addition, we use bleach, a glass-only waste container, non latex gloves, lab coats, and safety goggles that are routinely sanitized in a UV goggle sanitizer unit.

We also had experts overseeing our project to manage any of the risks associated with our lab work. Beth Crissy, our Principal investigator, insured safety procedures were followed in the lab setting. She has a long history of working with E.Coli and managing molecular biology lab.

Regarding our specific project, this system would be used in the human body to treat a mutational disease if it were to fully develop into a real product that people could use. Some of the ethical risks involved with such a use would be the possibility of a wider use of CRISPR for less non-therapeutic applications.