Good Laboratory Practice in Microbiology Laboratory

Good microbiological laboratory practices (GMLP) are designed to protect both workers (i.e., lab staff, non-lab staff and researchers) and research material (i.e., organisms and equipment) in the microbiology laboratory. It consist of activities that depend on several principles: aseptic technique, control of media, control of test strains, operation and control of equipment, diligent recording and evaluation of data, and training of the laboratory staff.

Good Microbiology Laboratory Practices

  • Follow a documented procedural manual (SOP) and it must be reviewed and updated regularly. This manual should also include laboratory spill and emergency procedures.
  • Personnel must receive training on the potential hazards associated with the laboratory work and ensure that everyone entering the laboratory understands the hazards associated with the lab.
  • Access to laboratory and support areas is limited to authorized personnel.
  • Keep separate air supply to laboratories and manufacturing areas.
  • Eating, drinking, smoking, storing of either food, personal belongings, or utensils, applying cosmetics, and inserting or removing contact lenses are not permitted in any laboratory.
  • Wear Face mask/respirator and googles during media preparation, autoclave operation, testing, and cleaning.
  • Open wounds, cuts, scratches and grazes should be covered with waterproof dressings.
  • Avoid oral pipetting of any substance in laboratory.
  • Long hair is to be tied back or restrained so that it cannot come into contact with hands, specimens, containers or equipment.
  • All media, reagents, and chemicals should store at proper storage condition.
  • Handle microbial cultures and specimens with utmost care under Laminar air flow (LAF) / Bio-safety cabinet (BSC).
  • Use heat resistant gloves during uploading materials and media from steam or dry heat sterilization.
  • Wash hands before leaving the laboratory.
  • Decontaminate work surfaces with an appropriate disinfectant at the end of every experiment and following any spill.
  • Maintain an effective rodent and insect control program.
  • Report all spills and accidents/incidents to your supervisor.

Microbiology lab is among the highly sophisticated lab in pharmaceutical sector. Entry to microbiology lab is first-most and very crucial in terms of safety of lab-personnel. Some infectious materials when fallen can lead to substantial infection upon exposures to the lab personnel. Spillage management practices should be used in such cases. The laboratory management is responsible for ensuring that the laboratory has sufficient resources to meet the existing testing and maintenance requirements.

Read also: Microbiological Data Integrity Issues and Control Strategies

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