Safety within Our Project

For the 2018 iGEM competition, the Pittsburgh iGEM team considered safety in order to perform responsible research. We are considered a Level 1 Biology Lab. We chose to work with a non-pathogenic E. coli K12 strain. The EPA ( has documented the potential risks of this strain, which are minimal in healthy individuals.

The parts we chose aren’t harmful to humans, animals, and plants. A list of these parts can be found under our “Parts” page. There is little risk of our bacterial model escaping, but it is still possible, which we considered in use of our parts. Our major parts are gRNA molecules and repeated DNA sequences, which are used for recording.

Laboratory Training

Before we began our wetlab work for this year’s project, the team had to complete two safety training programs.

Chemical Hygiene: This training course addressed OSHA Laboratory Standard (29 CFR 1910.1450). It also Increased awareness and understanding of chemical hazards and discussed control measures to reduce exposure to chemicals. Also, this course talked about dealing with injuries on the job and chemical waste disposal.

Bloodbourne Pathogens: This training course covered defining bloodborne pathogen transmission, recommending protective measures, and review University biosafety policies.


Personal Protective Equipment, Proper Waste Disposal, and Laboratory Safety

Throughout the course of our research, the Pittsburgh iGEM team used proper instructions from the University of Pittsburgh for the following: Proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Biological Waste, and Ethidium Bromide Solid and Liquid Waste.

Safety Form

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