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Procedure for work with Biological substances

To ensure that all work with biological substances at the Department is performed according to current laws and regulations. (Working Environment Act).

This procedure applies for all areas where work with biological substances is performed. The procedure applies for all research and teaching activities including biological substances.


Head of Department has overall responsibility for all laboratory work at IBV. All communication with the "Arbeidstilsynet" must be signed by the Head of Department.
Section leader is responsible to ensure that the "Arbeidstilsynet" is informed before work with Biological substances cl.2, commences.


This procedure is an addition to UiO's Procedure for laboratory safety; management of work with chemicals, biological agents, genetically modified microorganisms and sources of radiation. Together these procedures will ensure that work with biological substances is performed safely and according to legislation.

Work that can lead to exposure to Biological substances:

  • Work with Class 2 Biological substances can only be performed in approved laboratories.

  • Work with Class 3 and 4 Biological substances is NOT permitted at IBV. This type of work must be performed in labs elsewhere.

  • Biological substances should be handled with caution as exposure may cause illness in humans. As a consequence, all procedures including Cl. 2 Biological substances should have an up-to-date risk assessment, in order to reduce the exposure to a minimal level.

  • Biological substances such as bacteria and cell cultures, should be stored/cultured in properly labelled and closed containers. The culturing should be performed in separate incubators suited for this purpose.

  • Hygiene and cleaning:

    • Dedicated sinks for hand wash should be present in all labs where Biological substances Cl. 2. are used.
    • Work surfaces should be kept clean at all times.
    • Work surfaces should be cleaned before starting the lab work. You should disinfect and clean after use.
    • Work surfaces and equipment should be disinfected regularly with suitable disinfectant and/or UV-light. This is to prevent transfer of potentially infectious material or spread of this to the environment.
  • Make sure you have regular health check-ups and get necessary vaccines.

Disposal of Biological substances:

Local procedure for Waste disposal

Adverse events and accidents:


Pathogen Safety Data Sheets (PSDSs) are SDSs that describe the related health hazards to known human pathogens, as well as recommendations on how to work with them. They are published by the Public Health Agency of Canada.


FOR-2011-12-06-1358 Arbeids- og sosialdepartementet

FOR-2011-12-06-1357 Arbeids- og sosialdepartementet

FOR-2011-12-06-1356 Arbeids- og sosialdepartementet

Published Feb. 5, 2015 12:35 PM - Last modified Apr. 23, 2021 2:42 PM