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General Biosafety Principles for a Safe Laboratory Environment 

To control biohazards and prevent the spread of harmful disease, biosafety should always be followed in laboratories and other necessary facilities. Regardless of the biocontainment level, understanding basic biosafety principles is the foundation of a lab’s success. 

At MRIGlobal, we not only implement biosafety best practices in our own labs, we help private, public, and government institutions with biosafety training. 

Keep reading to learn more about basic biosafety principles. 

Biosafety containment level

The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) created a standard that separates labs into four different containment levels depending on the severity of the microorganism. These containment levels are (from least secure to most secure):

  • BSL-1
  • BSL-2
  • BSL-3
  • BSL-4

Learn more about biosafety containment levels. →

Primary and secondary containment 

Within the lab, containment is either primary or secondary. Primary containment is designed to protect the people within the lab from exposure. This may include biological safety cabinets, fume hoods, enclosed containers, and more. Personal protective equipment such as masks or gloves can also fall into this category. 

Secondary containment prevents biological hazards and pathogens from escaping the lab and exposing the outside. The design and architecture of the lab and building are crucial for secondary containment. It can also include ventilation systems, handwashing stations, and airlocks. 

Risk Assessment

Risk assessment along with containment is crucial for understanding how to best maneuver around a lab. It is a process that centers around your facility, and must be specific to the materials you’re working with. Proper risk assessment not only considers the biological agent, it also determines the potential consequences of certain activities. In doing so, you discover aspects of your lab that could increase the likelihood of exposure, giving you a chance to resolve an issue before it causes major harm. 

Learn more about biosafety principles from MRIGlobal

For more than 75 years, MRIGlobal has advanced scientific research across a variety of industries. We focus on supporting better health outcomes on a global scale. For us, it’s not simply about science; it’s about the people who make it all happen. 

With a solution-driven approach, we  find answers in even the most complex situations. Through our dedication, we can solve virtually any technical problem. 

To learn more about our biosafety principles through our biosafety training, contact us at info@mriglobal.org. You can also get a free quote by completing our online form. 

If you’re part of an agency, business, or academic institution seeking help with a project, use our Project Quote Tool to get started today. 

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