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Containment Level 3 Laboratory

Part of a wider microbiology suite

Biosafety NEW

The Containment Level 3 (CL3) laboratory is a fully contained, 105 m3 sealable laboratory accessed via a lobby, which has hand washing and changing facilities. The lobby is, in turn, accessed from the main Microbiology Lab, which operates at Containment Level 2.

The facility allows us to work with biological agents, including pathogens, classified in Hazard Group 3. The laboratory also operates under a Specified Animal Pathogens Order licence, which is renewed only after periodic inspection.

Key features

  • Independent air handling system, capable of isolation for fumigation.
  • Negative air pressure in the CL3 lab with respect to the lobby, and in the lobby compared to the main laboratory to prevent the release of pathogens.
  • Extract air ducts have HEPA filters.
  • Walls, floor and ceiling are clad in a continuous vinyl layer to facilitate cleaning and fumigation.
  • Electro-magnetic interlocks so that both lobby doors cannot be opened at the same time; secure card control on main access.
  • Class I microbiology safety cabinet to provide primary containment during the handling of biohazardous materials.

Main applications

Work on Group 3 pathogens such as:

  • Anthrax bacteria
  • Toxic strains of Escherichia coli
  • Tuberculosis bacteria
  • Hepatitis virus

Our Microbiology Team also has the capability for molecular detection of pathogens as well as a large and growing library of surrogate bacteria and viruses available. These are particularly useful for work on contamination processes and decontamination techniques.

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