The policies, procedures and information contained in this section pertain to all Western Michigan University personnel or visitors conducting microbiology, recombinant or synthetic DNA or life sciences research or instruction.
This section does not pertain to bloodborne pathogens or the diagnostic activities of Sindecuse Health Center, WMU clinics or athletic trainers.
The sub-areas are very different from each other. Recombinant DNA does not only cover altering genes of microbes, but may involve altering genes of a fish to make it glow. In the latter, no microbe would be involved, but recombinant or synthetic DNA would be. The opposite is also true; a researcher may be working with a virus to map out its genome with the future intent on developing something that would destroy the virus or alter its reproductive capacity. There is no recombinant or synthetic DNA involvement in this use.
- Microbiological Safety and Security—These policies and procedures apply to all personnel in facilities or on property owned or controlled by WMU using or doing research on potentially hazardous microbial agents and/or their products that does not alter the DNA or RNA of the microbes’ genes.
- Recombinant and Synthetic DNA Biosafety—These policies and procedures apply to all personnel in facilities or on property owned or controlled by WMU conducting research in which the DNA or RNA of host or target cells are altered and created (synthetic).