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4.22 Other Aerosol-Generating Lab Equipment and Tasks

Lab equipment that breaks up, slices, mixes, separates, nebulizes or applies fluidics to move biological material has the potential to create biohazardous aerosols, such as:

  • Homogenizers, blenders, sonicators, tissue grinders, microtomes, lyophilizers, nebulizers, lasers, shaking incubators
  • Centrifuges, vortex mixers
  • Fermenters, flow cytometers, pipettes

Research tasks that have the potential to create aerosols include, but are not limited to:

  • Animal inoculations
  • Removing fluid from a vial with rubber septum with a needle
  • Harvesting egg or animal tissue
  • Necropsies
  • Opening a vial of lyophilized biological material
  • Opening a vial of thawed culture material
  • Flaming inoculating loops with open flame
  • Performing bacterial staining
  • Performing microscopy using live agents
  • Loading a hemocytometer for cell counting
  • Changing animal bedding

Measures to reduce aerosol creation:

  • Think through each procedural step to identify the specific risks.
  • Eliminate, substitute or reconfigure, if possible, to lessen the aerosol risks.
  • Utilize all containment elements that are part of the equipment, i.e., safety cups on centrifuge rotors.
  • Utilize biosafety cabinets or other containment devices to house aerosol-generating small equipment or tasks.
  • Always disinfect work areas and equipment after use.
  • Always use appropriate PPE to protect yourself.