Tufts University Regional Biocontainment Laboratory

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Contact Information

Director: Sam Telford, MS, ScD
Email: Sam.Telforde@tufts.edu
Website: http://tufts.edu/vet/ne-rbl/

Animal Capabilities, including species and containment level(s)

  • Mice
  • Rats
  • Guinea pigs
  • Rabbits
  • Ferrets
  • Gnotobiotic piglets

Animal Models, including species, disease, and delivery method

  • Mice: Francisella tularensis (aerosol, intranasal, intradermal); Yersinia pestis (intranasal, sc, aerosol); Bacillus anthracis (aerosol); botulinum toxins (iv); Mycobacterium tuberculosis and M. bovis (aerosol, intranasal)
  • Guinea pigs: M. tuberculosis (aerosol)
  • Rabbits: B. anthracis (aerosol)
  • Rats: F. tularensis (intranasal; Y. pestis (intranasal)


F. tularensis, Y. pestis, B. anthracis, M. tuberculosis, M. bovis, Clostridium botulinum neurotoxins A-G, and EEE.

Imaging capabilities

Xenogen IVIS Spectrum within the ABSL3 vivarium

Laboratory and Analytical Support

  • Immunology services: Flow cytometer and ELISPOT reader available in the RBL
  • Pathology services: Clinical and Anatomical Pathology support available through the Department of Biomedical Sciences on campus. The TCSVM Histology Laboratory is also available.

Ability To Accommodate cGLP or cGMP Studies?

cGLP compliant.

Specialized Areas or Major Equipment Available

The supporting BSL2 laboratory has a NanoDrop 2000c spectrophotometer, BioTek Synergy 4 Multidetection Plate Reader, UVP BioDocIt imaging system, CTL ImmunoSpot S5 reader, and an ABI 7500 Fast Real-Time PCR instrument. Also in BSL2 space is a Zeiss LSM700 confocal microscope with live cell imaging capability.

Located within ABSL3 space is an IVIS Spectrum, a BDFortessa flow cytometer (3 lasers, 18 detectors), a Drew Scientific HemaVet950 and an Abraxis VetScan2. Separate aerobiology (CH Technologies nose-only inhalation exposure system in a Baker Class III hood) and insectary suites are located within the ABSL3 vivarium.

A DSI telemetry system for monitoring animals is also available.

Shared Resources That Amplify and Expand Research Capabilities

Separate Botulinum Neurotoxin Select Agent Facility with both animal and laboratory space, and an isolated BSL3 animal/laboratory space for tularemia-related research; Department of Infectious Disease and Global Health—staff of 50 with technical expertise in animal models for many of the NIAID Priority A, B, and C Pathogens, plus access to equipment within the department.

Content last reviewed on November 14, 2016