ASC seeking feedback on proposed safety protocol change

In an effort to safely reduce the amount of personal protective equipment, or PPE, that researchers and lab staff must use, the BU Animal Science Center is considering a change in the safety protocol around disinfection in most rodent facilities. Before implementing any changes, the ASC is seeking feedback from investigators and laboratory staff in its user community through both written response and open dialogue at forums on both the Medical and Charles River Campuses.

About the proposal

Current safety protocols call for the use of chlorine dioxide-based disinfectant, which in order to ensure safe handling requires an amount of PPE that some consider burdensome. The proposal currently being considered would involve transitioning to an alternative mode of disinfection using an activated hydrogen peroxide disinfectant, sold under the brand name Rescue®, that will meet biosecurity standards while reducing the amount of required PPE.

In looking for ways to reduce the amount of PPE lab staff must wear, ASC staff consulted with colleagues at peer institutions and conducted extensive product research to explore possible alternatives. We have determined that transitioning to an activated hydrogen peroxide disinfectant is consistent with similar changes at other major research facilities and would bring benefits other than reduced PPE requirements.

These benefits include:

  • Less contact time: activated hydrogen peroxide is effective against a broad range of pathogens in one minute;
  • Reduced environmental impact: hydrogen peroxide breaks down into water and oxygen;
  • Cost savings: activated hydrogen peroxide requires less product than chlorine dioxide and, as a ready-to-use solution, has a longer shelf life

The University’s Environmental Health & Safety office has also reviewed and approved the proposal.

Detailed product information, which includes an extensive Germicidal Efficacy Data Summary, can be located at


The ASC will be soliciting feedback throughout the month of April, with written comment closing on Friday, April 20, and open forums scheduled for the week of April 23. We are aiming for an implementation period in May 2018.

The dates and locations of the forums, which will include product descriptions and comparisons, are:
April 26, 2018
2:30 – 3:30 pm
Evans Biomedical Research Center (X Building)
Room 715
650 Albany St.

April 25, 2018
11 am- noon
Kilachand Center for Integrated Life Sciences & Engineering
Room 106B
610 Comm Ave.

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