|List of experiments|
|Laboratory Safety||All of these labs can be done with minimum safety precautions. Laboratory safety is described below.|
Used materials can be collected in 5% household bleach for disposal. Your local college, hospital lab, public health lab, water treatment plant lab or wastewater facility lab might provide "red bags" for discarded materials. The full bags could be returned to them for sterilization and disposal.
The cultures will grow fastest at the temperature indicated in the protocol, however, all of the cultures will grow at room temperature. When room temperature is used, the cultures will grow slower so observation periods should be timed accordingly.
These experiments use natural bacterial populations, however it is always prudent to handle any bacterial culture following standard safety precautions.
1. No eating or drinking during lab.
2. Wash the desktops with a disinfectant before an experiment. Lysol or 5% household bleach will work. This is to reduce contamination of the experiment.
3. All used materials, e.g., swabs and Petri plates containing culture media, should be collected in a "red bag" or in a container of 5% household bleach for disposal.
4. Keep your fingers out of bacterial cultures.
5. If a bacterial culture is spilled, cover the spill and glassware with paper towels and soak with disinfectant. After 20 min., clean up the mess being careful not to touch broken glass.
6. Wash the desktops with disinfectant after each experiment.
7. Wash your hands after working in lab.
|Standard Practices for the Student|
*California Health and Welfare Agency, Infectious Disease Branch. California Morbidity, #37, September 23, 1988.
|Standard Practices for the Instructor|
Any powdered or liquid soaps may be used for routine handwashing in the laboratory. Bar soaps should not be used since they can become contaminated. Liquid soaps which do not contain a preservative should be cleaned out routinely and replaced with new soap. Powdered soaps have the advantage of not becoming contaminated or allowing organisms to grow in them.
Rapid disinfection of hands may be accomplished by the:
Spills of microbiologic material onto bench tops may be disinfected by using a disinfectantdetergent according to the manufacturers directions. If a hypochlorite solution (household bleach) is used, remember that it is easily neutralized by organic matter, may discolor surfaces, is corrosive to metals, and has an unpleasant odor.
Potentially infectious wastes including human body secretions and fluids and objects, such as slides, syringes, lancets, and bandages, contaminated with these materials should be placed in labeled containers container. Note that "sharps" (including broken glass) must be placed in a punctureproof container. Contaminated glassware should be placed in a container of disinfectant.
Contaminated glassware should be decontaminated before washing. Decontamination can be by:
1. Autoclave or pressure cooker at 121°C at 15 psi for 15 min.
2. Soaking in 10% household bleach for 30 minutes.
Contaminated disposables such as bandages and plasticware should be "red bagged" and autoclaved (at a local hospital or college). Your local scavenger may have a procedure they use for physicians, dentists, and your school health center.
Keep squirt bottles of disinfectant on hand to cover spills and wash work surfaces: