In accordance to the iGEM safety rules, our team used organism classified in the Risk Group 1, such as Escherichia coli K-12-strain derivates. To ensure the safety of ourselves and the project, our lab team worked in a BSL-1 (Biosafety Level 1) laboratory, certified internationally by WHO and CEN, in the Institute of Human Virology and Cancer Biology of the Faculty of Medicine, University of Indonesia. The safety criteria of this lab include risk assessment for each project, safety trainings, and standard operational procedures. Several lab administrative strategies are available such as medical surveillance and vaccination for those working with potentially infected human tissues, accident report, and safety drills.
One of our part which raised concern about security is the DiphTox part. The details regarding this part is discussed in http://parts.igem.org/Part:BBa_K2607000 Regarding safety issues, one of the main purposes of the creation of this part is to eliminate the toxic domain of the protein, leaving only the binding domain to be used as test device for HB-EGF/Tar chimeric receptor. In managing the data, our laboratory had applied several safeguards, such as restricted informational access or password-locked computer. We have also discussed this matter with our PI, dr. Budiman Bela, and also with the Lab Biosafety Officer, Mrs. Aroem Naroeni, which also shared the safety aspects of our laboratory.
Figure 1. One of our lab member (Left) interviews Mrs. Aroem (Right) for asking any advices and suggestions regarding team’s project and lab safety.
As a part of the development of biosafety and biosecurity, iGEM UI team had recently been given the chance to be a speaker in a training conducted by the Indonesian Biorisk Association together with the Federal Bureau Interagency, regarding the potential of dual-use in our project. We planned to consult with the FBI experts about future usage of DiphTox part in this seminar by the end of October 2018.