Date: Fri, 10 Dec 2010 10:05:29 -0500
Reply-To: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: "Johnson, Amy Carr" <amy_johnson**At_Symbol_Here**HARVARD.EDU>
Subject: Re: Chemical Safety and Lab Animals
In-Reply-To: A<999BB234D7FB604AA2D354FEE0230472020E7B5F**At_Symbol_Here**>

Hi Janice-

In terms of the bedding handling, how do you treat the bedding?  As hazardous waste if it is a hazardous chemical?  Is only the first cage change after drug administration treated as hazardous?  Do the staff ever wear more than nitrile gloves, goggles, lab coats?  Do they have to do the bedding change in a  fumehood, ducted BSC?  What kind of extra protection would be afforded the animal care husbandry staff if deemed necessary (e.g., double gloves, respirators?)



From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**] On Behalf Of Dodge, Janice
Sent: Thursday, December 09, 2010 2:26 PM
To: DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Chemical Safety and Lab Animals

Hi Amy,

 < /o:p>

Our Biosafety Officer and Lab Safety Officer review all proposed animal use protocols wherein research animals are treated with chemicals or other hazardous agents.  We have provided all researchers with a description of “standard precautions”  which they may check on their protocol form if they think no extra precautionary measures are needed for the work beyond standard lab and animal care PPE and handling protocols.  If they are using agents that require protective methods beyond the standard, they must submit an appendix to the animal care protocol (we’ll help them write this) describing the extra precautions needed, eg. work only in a BSC or fume hood, special PPE, special practices or disposal steps, certain types of posting, extra training or supervision, emergency response procedures.

 < /o:p>

Often the researchers believe standard precautions are adequate and we do not.  Then we ask them to “beef up” their protocols and tell them how and why.   They have to do this to get approval of the animal use in their experiments by the IACUC.

 < /o:p>

These reviews take some time because we have to research the hazards related to the particular agents.  We look at degree of toxicity, method of administration, number of doses, amount likely to be excreted in bedding (if known), length of treatment, number of animals, as well as work practices and potential for injury or exposure…in other words we perform a risk assessment.

 < /o:p>

This program has worked pretty well for us.  It’s time consuming, but we have much better protection of our workers, in particular our animal care staff, than we once did.  Researchers tend to ignore what happens after they walk away from the rat.  If they are asked to think about the ultimate fate of a chemical injected IP or subcutaneously in a rat, they simply say that the doses are small (rats are small, right?) so small amounts of chemicals could not possible effect humans (even though they are used in the experiment to have a biological effect and many rats are injected at once, perhaps for days or weeks).

 < /o:p>

I hope this helps.

 < /o:p>

Janice Dodge

Laboratory Safety Officer

Florida State University


 < /o:p>

From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU] On Behalf Of Johnson, Amy Carr
Sent: Thursday, December 09, 2010 12:21 PM
To: DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Chemical Safety and Lab Animals


I am trying to get information from peer institutions about how they manage worker safety in regard to exposure to chemicals administered to lab animals.  Does anyone have any expertise in this issue?

Thank you-

Amy Johnson

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