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Chapter 27 : Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory

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Abstract:

This chapter addresses some of the basic safety issues and risk assessment considerations for those individuals who will be affiliated with biosafety level 4 (BSL-4) laboratory operations. It also discusses basic laboratory design and engineering considerations for reducing daily operational risks in these unique laboratories. The class III biological safety cabinet was designed for work at BSL-4 with microbiological agents, and it offers the highest degree of personnel and environmental protection from infectious aerosols, as well as protection of research materials from microbiological contaminants. The laboratory-specific BSL-4 safety and operations manual and its comprehensive protocols should be read by trainees and used for refresher training of experienced personnel. A supervised apprenticeship is completed when the trainer is satisfied that the trainee fully understands all of the principles of BSL-4 operations, and has satisfactorily demonstrated the requisite skills and temperament to work in the BSL-4 environment. Factors influencing the external containment envelope include clothing change room, personal shower and chemical disinfectant shower. Factors influencing the inside containment envelope include laboratory, microbiological security and communication training. The increase in construction of BSL-4 laboratories is the result of the need to study new and emerging diseases associated with high morbidity and mortality, as well as the concern that bioterrorists may use weaponized versions of exotic disease agents.

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27

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Figures

Image of FIGURE 1
FIGURE 1

Class III biological safety cabinet (CDC).

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27
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Image of FIGURE 2
FIGURE 2

Class III biological safety cabinet (USAMRIID).

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27
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Image of FIGURE 3
FIGURE 3

Generalized class III biological safety cabinet laboratory.

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27
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Image of FIGURE 4
FIGURE 4

Personal protective suit laboratory (CDC).

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27
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Image of FIGURE 5
FIGURE 5

Generalized BSL-4 protective suit laboratory.

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27
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References

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1. Abraham, G., J. Muschialli, and, D. Middleton. 2002. Animal experimentation in level 4 facilities, p. 343–359. In J. Y. Richmond (ed.), Anthology of Biosafety V. BSL-4 Laboratories. American Biological Safety Association, Mundelein, Ill.
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3. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. 2005. Agricultural Bio-terrorism Protection Act of 2002: Possession, Use and Transfer of Biological Agents and Toxins; final rule (7 CFR Part 331; 9 CFR Part 121). Fed. Regist. 70:1327813292.
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15. Crane, J. T., F. C. Bullock, and, J. Y. Richmond. 1999. Designing the BSL4 laboratory, p. 135–147. In J. Y. Richmond (ed.), Anthology of Biosafety I. Perspectives on Laboratory Design. American Biological Safety Association, Mundelein, Ill.
16. Hawley, R. J., P. R. Pittman, and, J. A. Nerges. 2000. Maximum containment for researchers exposed to biosafety level 4 agents, p. 35–53. In J. Y. Richmond (ed.), Anthology of Biosafety II. Facility Design Considerations. American Biological Safety Association, Mundelein, Ill.
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27. Wilhelmsen, C. L.,, N. K. Jaax, and, K. Davis III. 2002. Animal necropsy in maximum Containment, p. 361–408. In J. Y. Richmond (ed.), Anthology of BiosafetyV. BSL-4 Laboratories. American Biological Safety Association, Mundelein, Ill.

Tables

Generic image for table
TABLE 1

Maximum-containment conditions for work in the laboratory (BSL-4) or with animals (ABSL-4)

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27
Generic image for table
TABLE 2

Example of BSL-4 job hazard analysis

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27
Generic image for table
TABLE 3

Advantages and disadvantages of using a class III biological safety cabinet

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27
Generic image for table
TABLE 4

Advantages and disadvantages of using a personal protective suit

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27
Generic image for table
TABLE 5

List of training and proficiency items for the BSL-4 environment

Citation: Bressler D, Hawley R. 2006. Safety Considerations in the Biosafety Level 4 Maximum-Containment Laboratory, p 487-508. In Fleming D, Hunt D (ed), Biological Safety. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815899.ch27

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