Questions tagged [safety]

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11
votes
3answers
14k views

Can a carnivorous animal consume plants with no adverse effects?

While I know that in nature, carnivorous animals are poorly suited to eat plants (largely due to having sharp teeth, not grinding teeth, as far as I know), I was wondering if, in an emergency ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I put on a labcoat?

Let's assume I am wearing a labcoat for two reasons: Prevent the various bacteria, proteins, skin cells and substances on my clothes and my skin from contaminating my experiments. Prevent various ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Is working with (nitrile) gloves around a bunsen burner safe?

Recently I have started in a new microbiology lab, and with a new lab come new habits. When I was working with my bacterial (liquid) culture next to the flame (Bunsen burner) wearing nitrile gloves, ...
9
votes
1answer
6k views

When did mouth pipetting stop becoming a way to handle liquids in a lab?

Almost all modern lab protocols have an addendum prohibiting pipetting by mouth, instead mandating that a Gilson pipette, a rubber pipette ball, or a serological Pipet-Aid be used. However, it was ...
9
votes
2answers
11k views

Just how dangerous is ethidium bromide?

A common precaution for preparing EtBr-agarose gels is to add EtBr only after the gel solution has cooled somewhat, because EtBr is a dangerous mutagen. Supposedly, adding it to a hot liquid allows ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Why is blood removed from meat? [closed]

Blood is removed from meat before it is consumed. Below is, for example, how chickens are processed from Wikipedia. Removed from transport cages Hung by the legs on a shackle, mounted on a conveyor ...
6
votes
4answers
620 views

What kind of microscope for ML/biological research?

I am a computer science student, focusing on machine learning applications. I have been always interested in biology but I lack any training in it. Now, I had an idea that I could introduce myself to ...
6
votes
3answers
220 views

DNA as a digital storage medium; sequences algorithmically avoided for safety reasons (or should be)?

Safety for the environment is probably implicit here as well, but the focus should be on the people who may come in contact with large amounts of synthetic DNA used to encode information as a data ...
5
votes
1answer
431 views

Safety of using industrial water for hand washing

Industrial water taps are present in most biology laboratories I have been too. There are accompanied by a sign stating "do not drink". So obviously it is not a good idea to drink it. However I ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Why do carrots spoil so fast?

The carrots we buy from a supermarkets spoil very fast, albeit giving many consumers a false sense of preservability due to their structural rigidity. The answer extends to many other vegetables many ...
4
votes
1answer
149 views

Do DNA supply houses maintain a watch list for dangerous oligos (Anthrax, Smallpox, etc.)?

The recent work by DeLoache, et al. on a synthetic opiate-precursor production pathway in yeast has generated a lot of scare stories in the media about people homebrewing heroin as easily as they ...
4
votes
1answer
7k views

Wearing sunglasses during a solar eclipse [closed]

Note: I had asked this on Physics, but it is off-topic there due to being about safety. On the BBC's guide to eclipse-watching, Dr Lucie Green says: Watching an eclipse with normal sunglasses ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Neutralizing TCA washes [closed]

Trichloroacetic Acid (TCA) is commonly used for protein precipitation but the wash waste needs to be neutralized prior to disposal. What exactly is required to effectively neutralize TCA waste? Do I ...
3
votes
1answer
54 views

Is there any biosafety level scale for plant pathogens?

Biosafety levels commonly defined on basis of human/animal pathogens, but what would be the biosafety levels for plant pathogens?
3
votes
2answers
596 views

Cell line immortalisation biosafety

Cell lines are often immortalised by artificial expression of proteins which specifically cause the knockout of important cancer suppression genes or the activation of proto-oncogenes. Cellular ...
3
votes
0answers
242 views

Is Near-infrared focused light safe for your eyes?

I found a new product, but I'm afraid it's not safe. Can you help me understand what the safety limits are when it comes to near-infrared light focused on your eyes is? I'm assuming the wavelength ...
2
votes
1answer
764 views

What dangers would the wireless transmission of power through microwaves pose to living organisms?

If we were one day able to harness the power of "wireless electricity", and INTEGRATE it into society, what disadvantages and/or dangers to living organisms would become relevant at that point? To my ...
2
votes
2answers
167 views

Career progression through biosafety levels?

Does a career in infectious disease typically progress through biosafety levels, or do people select one and specialize their training in procedures specific to those hazards? That is, say Dr. ...
2
votes
0answers
33 views

Amount of animals to use for animal trials [closed]

I am working on an independent research project involving animal models. I am unsure how to deterine how many animals (rats) to use for the project. The rats will be injected with different solutions ...
2
votes
0answers
154 views

Pressure produced by blowing with mouth

I need some figures on the pressure humans are capable blowing with their mouth with zero flow. I only need very approximate figures. I'm guessing around 500mm of water? I haven't got a tube handy to ...
1
vote
1answer
566 views

Irradiation instead of pasteurization?

Can we just replace pasteurization with simple irradiation for most (if not all) foods? (For example, such as milk, to sterilize and preserve flavors)
1
vote
2answers
375 views

293T safety, transfections with plasmid DNA

I am a little concerned with 293T cell lines, I have been working with this cell line for a few years with less frequency. However there were times that i extracted the proteins from these cell lines ...
1
vote
2answers
964 views

How to safely sterilize urea-containing growth medium?

I'm using urea-containing growth medium for experiments with bacteria (1-2 l/day). After the experiment, the growth medium has to be sterilized and disposed. I did this so far by autoclaving, but our ...
1
vote
1answer
287 views

Can one type of bacteria cause several diseases? [closed]

If yes. Does it change its shape in every disease, or does it remain in the same shape and cause several diseases?
1
vote
0answers
47 views

Are olfactive indicators always the result of inadequacy in sanitation?

Question If you can smell the scent of food in a thoroughly cleaned container, does that imply trace amounts of food particles remain? Scope It goes without saying that our sense of smell is ...
1
vote
0answers
143 views

What are the safety precautions I should take if I want to experiment with C. elegans (at home)?

Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) is a nematode (roundworm), and many nematodes do infect humans and cause diseases. How much is C. elegans safe (or unsafe) in this respect? C.elegans is a popular ...
1
vote
0answers
26 views

Is it safe to consume foods that are hot enough to scald your skin if you touch it with your hands?

Coffee is usually served at temperatures that would burn your hands if it spilled on it. Is the inside of your mouth not affected by the same biological process as that which causes your skin to burn?...
0
votes
1answer
175 views

Use lab agar for cooking [closed]

Our lab manager suspect that something wrong with our lab Bacto agar (Difco). So she decide to throw it to the garbage. I think that it's just a waste to throw that thing. Can someone think of reason ...
-2
votes
3answers
102 views

Food safety during roadtrips [closed]

I will be moving across the country in the coming weeks, and I have realised that I will likely have leftover perishable food in my apartment before I leave and I was thinking of trying to prepare ...