Due to our unconventional project we have been going through several reviews on how we have handled the strongyles. These questions have been received from the head primary instructor Margareta Krabbe and iGEM Headquarters. Due to Vidilabs everyday work with small & large strongyles, they were consulted before entering the practical period to create safety routines suitable for handling the strongyles. Even though these parasites are, according to Vidilab, generally regarded as safe as long as they are not ingested, we have been taking extra precautions by making sure that everyone is educated in the matter of waste disposal and laboratory safety. We have also had conversations with Mikael Olsson, the person responsible for the waste disposal routines at the Biomedical Centre where our laboratory is located.
Regarding general laboratory safety education, all members in the team had to attend an one hour course about lab safety to be allowed working in the lab. To make sure that common techniques were performed in a safe way, the team instructor held a one day course explaining and demonstrating common useful techniques within the field of synthetic biology.
In the very beginning of our practical period we planned on performing a mass spectrometry analysis of the cysts. This made it necessary for us to retrieve cysts that had been cut out and separated from the surrounding horse tissue. This made additional check-in forms necessary.
To read more in detail about all the risk we have faced in the lab and about other things we have considered regarding general safety, please have a look at the safety form. On the website you have to select Uppsala from the Team Selection menu to access the answers.