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Work with Known or Suspected Carcinogens or Mutagens

Weighing and Diluting Parent Compounds

  1. Solids
    • Weighing must be done in a chemical fume hood, or
    • If a balance/scale can not be used in the fume hood, pre-weigh a test tube or other covered vessel and, inside the hood, add the compound. Re-weigh to calculate the amount added and add solvent to attain desired concentration, or
    • Purchase a small quantity and reconstitute entire amount in in chemical fume hood.
  2. Liquids
    • Perform all dilutions and aliquotting in a chemical fume hood.

Personal Protective Equipment

  1. Gloves. Protection is largely a function of the glove material's ability to prevent chemical permeation and no one glove material is resistant to all hazardous chemicals.
    • Contact the chemical manufacturer or consult a lab supply company catalogue for information on the type of glove appropriate for use with specific chemical(s). EH&S can assist in this process. A comprehensive listing of glove materials appropriate for use with specific chemicals is provided by Best Glove Company.
    • Double gloving may be necessary for high hazard activities or if a single glove will protect against all of the components in a mixture; the need to do so should be weighed against the resultant loss of dexterity.
    • Remove gloves when leaving work area.
  2. Lab coats are required and must remain in the work area at the completion of activities. Disposable aprons should be worn over lab coats if a large amount of splashing is anticipated.
  3. Safety glasses with side shields and brow bar, goggles, or a face shield are required. The choice will largely depend on the properties of the material, the volume, and the chances of spills or splashes.
  4. Dust masks or face shields are appropriate when there is a risk of exposure to airborne particulates.
  5. Respirators are for high risk exposures to gases/vapors, or particulates. Use must be preceded by EH&S assessment, medical clearance, fit testing, and training.
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Work Practices

  1. Volatile materials must be used in a chemical fume hood.
  2. The use of non-volatile carcinogens/mutagens should also be limited to a chemical fume hood. If this is not possible, activities on the open bench must be preceded by an assessment of the need for additional personal protective equipment, modifying work practices, particularly with regard to minimizing the risk of splashes or aerosol generation, protecting work surfaces, and thorough decontamination of the area at the end of procedures.
  3. Containers used for aliquots and dilutions must be labeled with the name of all hazardous component(s) and kept securely closed.
  4. Materials designated for disposal must be labeled, "Hazardous Waste" and disposed through the EH&S Hazardous Waste Program.
  5. All rooms must have signs posted outside their doors indicating the nature of the hazards in use, admission restrictions, and emergency contacts.
  6. Work surfaces should be covered with "Bench-Kote" or a similar material.
  7. Spill-neutralizing agent(s), if applicable, must be available and personnel must be knowledgeable as to their proper use.
  8. Confine work with carcinogens/mutagens to a small, isolated area; work and storage areas should be indicated by signs noting the presence of the carcinogens/mutagens and use restrictions.

Use in Animals

  1. Administration must occur in a chemical fume hood whenever possible.
  2. Chemotherapeutic drugs must be administered in Biological Safety Cabinet.
  3. If use of containment devices (chemical fume hoods, biological safety cabinets) is not feasible, the considerations noted in C-2 (above) apply. In these cases, administration shall not take place in rooms housing other animals; contact Dr. Kohn, Director ICM, 5-3837 for further details in this situation.
  4. Animals will be housed in the Biohazard Suite of Eye Institute or other area designated by the Institute of Comparative Medicine (ICM). Ventilated racks or microisolator cages may be used limit area contamination and personnel exposure.
  5. Principal Investigators using hazardous chemicals in animal care protocols must complete EH&S Appendix E, "Form for the Use of Hazardous Chemicals" describing safe-use practices.

Disposal of Animal Carcasses, Excreta, and Bedding

  1. During the Washout Period* carcasses, excreta, and bedding are collected as Chemical-Pathological Waste** for off-site incineration.
  2. After Washout Period
    • Carcasses, bedding, and small animal excreta incinerated on site.
    • Feces from large animals is collected as Chemical-Pathological** waste for off site incineration

Principal Investigators must periodically review their activities to ensure that hazardous materials are handled in a manner that minimizes personal and Environmental exposure.

*Washout Period is the time needed for compound(s) to be metabolized and eliminated to the extent that animals, bedding, and wastes no longer need to be treated as posing a chemical hazard. Ten times the compound's half life is typically considered to provide a sufficient margin of safety for defining the Washout Period.

**Chemical-Pathological Waste is removed for disposal by a Hazardous Waste Vendor for off-site incineration.

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