Bioengineering and life sciences are safe activities when you follow simple guidelines. The activities provided by Amino Labs can be done at home, in North America and in any classrooms*. Read on to ensure you adopt safe practices.
Firstly, our kits contain only non-pathogenic ingredients. These are rated Risk Group 1 (RG1) (Biosafety Level 1), the most benign level (and therefore the safest). With these ingredients, no special containment or training is required in North America*, but you must follow the following rules for your safety and the safety and success of your experiment(s)!
We recommend the system for ages 8+, under adult supervision, and 16+ unsupervised.
We recommend that the discard container be emptied by an adult and that the cleaning instructions be strictly followed for safety and experiement success. Make sure to store the ingredients in accordance with the instructions found in this booklet (refrigerated, in the freezer, or room temperature). Eyewear is not provided but should be worn.
• Do not eat or drink near your experiments. Keep your experiment at least 10 feet from food, drinks, etc. Under no circumstances should you consume any of the ingredients.
• Immunocompromised persons: While the ingredients in these kits are considered non-pathogenic, some persons, such as immunocompromised persons, can be affected by large numbers of bacteria and should wear extra protection to ensure no contact with the ingredients.
• Wash your hands before and after manipulating your experiment, the ingredients, or the hardware. • Wear gloves, even when cleaning your station or handling the consumables (petri plates, loops, etc). This will protect you from your experiment, and your experiment from you. Any latex, nytrile, or general purpose gloves you can find at the pharmacy will do. Also, after you put your gloves on, be aware of what you touch. Try not to touch your face, scratch itches with your gloved fingers!
• Place the DNA Playground or Bioproduction lab on a stable work surface. Keep it level at all times.
• Clean up your station, spills and work surface before and after use. Use a 10% solution of chlorinated bleach generously sprayed onto a paper towel and rub onto any contaminated surfaces. (Careful! This can discolor your clothes). A chlorinated spay cleaner will also work.
• Find a container to discard used consumables such as the blue and yellow loops, and tubes. An old large yogurt container, large plastic cup or the like will do. You will then fill this with bleach once your experiment is over, as described in the "After your experiment" section of your user manual.
• Avoid using Isopropyl Alcohol on the DNA Playground; this can cause the plastic to become brittle and crack.
If you would like to do a short online lab safety course for your edification, we recommend this Goverment of Canada course: https://training-formation.phac-aspc.gc.ca
*If you are outside of North America, please see our FAQs to learn more where you can practice these activities safely, and according to your local legislation.