Team:FAU Erlangen/Safety


Safety is an important issue in every laboratory since certain risks and safety issues can arise. Thus, the iGEM Team Erlangen is in full compliance with the safety and security rules given by the iGEM competition and the german regulation and laws.

Before starting the work in the laboratory, all team members from the wet lab team received security and safety training by Dr. Martin Sachs, our contact person in terms of safety issues. We also approached another expert in this field, Prof. Matthias Peipp (University Kiel), that has 15 years of experience in antibody engineering and helped us to clarify certain risks that can occur during our project.

The team carried out their wet lab in the laboratories of Prof. Thomas Winkler (?) in the Nikolaus-Fiebiger-Center of Molecular Medicine, which falls under the biosafety level 2. This level is of moderate safety risk and was sufficient for all our experiments.

During our project different chassis were used. Most of the chassis have biosafety level 1 and pose no risk if they escaped, including Escherichia coli DH5α/ BL21 (DE3)/ BL21 (DE3) Star/ BL21 (DE3) Tuner, CD8+-T-cells and CHO-S cells. They are non-pathogenic and cannot survive outside of lab conditions. During our project, two chassis of biosafety level 2 were used, HEK 293T cells and Caco-2 cells. These cells also cannot persist outside the lab and are non-pathogenic.

To avoid working with whole blood, lymphocytes were obtained from Prof. Zimmermann (Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg), which avoids the risk that arises of the contact with used blood. No further risks arise from the experiments carried out during our project. 

If our project would be fully developed its usage would be the treatment of cancer in the human body. A risk arising from that would be some parts containing *Streptococcus pyogenes* protein that can cause an immunogenetic reaction in the human body. To address this issue, our designed neural network, which predicts allergenic sequences, could be of great advantage.