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Environmental Health & Safety

37 Dewey Field Road
Suite 6216
Hanover, NH 03755-3529
Phone: (603) 646-1762
Fax: (603) 646-2622

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Program Overview:

The Dartmouth College Biosafety Program is dedicated to promoting a safe, ethical, and environmentally-friendly research environment.  We support the advancement of Dartmouth biological research by:  
  • Assisting our scientists in the adherence to all federal, state, and local requirements for biological research
  • Providing training, risk assessment consultations, and laboratory safety audits
  • Developing institutional and lab specific policies on the safe handling of biohazardous materials, including engineering and work practice controls, biosafety levels, and personal protective equipment requirements

Our priorities are to:

  • Prevent laboratory acquired infections (LAIs)
  • Facilitate research compliance
  • Protect the environment
  • Promote a positive culture around laboratory safety

Biological research is any experimental activity involving the following biological agents:

  • Human source materials (includes primary and immortal cell lines, clinical specimens, samples, tissues, etc.)
  • Animals and animal source materials
  • Plants and plant source materials
  • Recombinant and synthetic DNA/RNA (including all viral vectors, RNAi technologies, etc.), as stipulated by the NIH/Office of Science Policy Guidelines for Research Involving Recombinant or Synthetic Nucleic Acid Molecules
  • Microorganisms (bacteria, viruses, fungi, prions, yeast, algae, rickettsiae, parasites, etc.)
  • Biological toxins, allergens 

Laboratory Biosafety Audits:

Biosafety audits are a vital part of any safety program as it ensures that all essential safety measures and regulations are followed within the research environment.  They are designed to help labs be "inspection ready" for any unannounced federal inspections.  Aspects of laboratory audits are dependent upon the nature of research in the given area and may include any of the following:
  • Assessing appropriate personal protective equipment
  • Proper use of laboratory equipment (biological safety cabinets, centrifuge, etc.)
  • Proper labeling of equipment for the storing/manipulation of biological materials
  • Proper procedures for decontamination of biological waste (solid, liquid, sharps)
  • Presence of life safety devices (eyewash, safety shower, antimicrobial soap, etc.)
Please review the Dartmouth Biological Laboratory Audit Checklist to best prepare for your lab's biosafety audit.  Comprehensive biological lab audits will be performed every 3 years (at a minimum) in conjunction with IBC re-review of research.  Lab audits may be conducted more frequently if there is a significant change in research (new biohazardous agents or manipulations), and/or if incidents are found during an audit.  Please contact the Biological Safety Officer if you would like to schedule a lab biosafety audit.


For specific questions or to learn more about our Biosafety Program, please email:
Erik Pietrowicz, MS, Biological Safety Officerabsa
Environmental Health & Safety
(603) 646-9790

Last Updated: 7/18/22