The organisms used for this project:
|Species||Strain no. / name||Risk Group||Any risk to humans?|
|K-12||DH5α||1||E. coli K-12 is considered as having no or
low individual and community risk. It is
unlikely to cause human or animal disease.
- All E. coli strains used in this project are attenuated mutant strains that are unlikely to survive/propagate in the environment outside the laboratory as they harbor many genetic mutations in their genome.
- To reduce the risk of biological materials escaping from the lab, all bacterial strains are kept and stored in designated refrigerators (before and after all experiments) in the supervisor’s (Dr. Richard Kong) laboratory which is not accessible to the general public. The lab where iGEM experiments are conducted is also not accessible to the general public because all lab workers need to be authorized to work in the lab and are required to carry a “name badge”.
- Possible risks : Spillage of bacterial cultures or organic wastes/solutions
- Solution: Spillages will be immediately dealt with in the lab using appropriate disinfection procedures (e.g. disinfection with antibacterial detergents) and contaminated bench surface will be cleaned with 70% ethanol.
- Organic solvents, biological materials and wastes (microorganisms) and plastic-wares are collected in separate waste containers for collection by technical staff. Biological wastes are treated with bleach and subsequently autoclaved to kill off all remaining microorganisms.
One possible risk is that consumers may suffer from side-effects or complication from ingesting our engineered bacteria. If our product were to be developed and produced in a large-scale, commercial setting, the product will be tested extensively and progressively through the following stages: cell culture, animal models and human trials. The product will be tested for its safety, toxicity, symbiosis and mutagenicity before being certified for use as a health supplement. In the case that the product causes discomfort or irritation to the consumer, they will be advised to stop taking the product and consult a doctor immediately.