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Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases

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Biosafety Level 4 Laboratory Tour

Inside the Lab

Once past security and inside the lab, redundant safety systems, procedures, and equipment protect researchers and the environment.

Photo of a typical BSL-4 lab
A typical BSL-4 lab. The yellow hoses provide filtered air to suited workers.


Safety Features

  • Entries and exits have double-door airlocks.
  • Work surfaces are regularly decontaminated.
  • If a vaccine exists against the microbe researchers are studying, researchers are vaccinated.
  • All solid and liquid waste is decontaminated by heat sterilization, gaseous sterilization, or liquid disinfectant. Before it leaves the facility, this waste meets or exceeds the environmental standards of the community where the facility is built.

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Last Updated December 14, 2006