Biosafety concerns for shared flow cytometry core facilities.Cytometry A. 2003 Dec; 56(2):113-9.C
Many researchers who need flow cytometry for their projects have neither sufficient funds nor the work volume to justify the purchase of an analytic cytometer or cell sorter. In shared flow cytometry facilities, costs for instrument purchases, cytometer maintenance, and personnel are pooled to provide economic services for a multitude of users when they are required. Owing to the diverse nature of the samples that are submitted to core facilities, the biohazard potential of the samples can vary dramatically. For the safety of facility personnel and users, it is critical that information about hazards contained in the samples be transmitted to instrument operators before flow cytometry experiments are started. During 1999 the former Biosafety Committee of the International Society for Analytical Cytology formulated a framework biosafety questionnaire for shared facilities designed to request information about the hazard potential of experimental samples from investigators who wish to use the facility. In this report we review safety issues that are pertinent to flow cytometry core facilities by discussing the individual components of this biosafety questionnaire.