The Biosafety Research Road Map: The Search for Evidence to Support Practices in the Laboratory-Bacillus anthracis and Brucella melitensis.
Blacksell SD., Dhawan S., Kusumoto M., Le KK., Summermatter K., O'Keefe J., Kozlovac J., Almuhairi SS., Sendow I., Scheel CM., Ahumibe A., Masuku ZM., Bennett AM., Kojima K., Harper DR., Hamilton K.
IntroductionBrucella melitensis and Bacillus anthracis are zoonoses transmitted from animals and animal products. Scientific information is provided in this article to support biosafety precautions necessary to protect laboratory workers and individuals who are potentially exposed to these pathogens in the workplace or other settings, and gaps in information are also reported. There is a lack of information on the appropriate effective concentration for many chemical disinfectants for this agent. Controversies related to B. anthracis include infectious dose for skin and gastrointestinal infections, proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE) during the slaughter of infected animals, and handling of contaminated materials. B. melitensis is reported to have the highest number of laboratory-acquired infections (LAIs) to date in laboratory workers.MethodsA literature search was conducted to identify potential gaps in biosafety and focused on five main sections including the route of inoculation/modes of transmission, infectious dose, LAIs, containment releases, and disinfection and decontamination strategies.ResultsScientific literature currently lacks information on the effective concentration of many chemical disinfectants for this agent and in the variety of matrices where it may be found. Controversies related to B. anthracis include infectious dose for skin and gastrointestinal infections, proper use of PPE during the slaughter of infected animals, and handling contaminated materials.DiscussionClarified vulnerabilities based on specific scientific evidence will contribute to the prevention of unwanted and unpredictable infections, improving the biosafety processes and procedures for laboratory staff and other professionals such as veterinarians, individuals associated with the agricultural industry, and those working with susceptible wildlife species.