Summer Meeting – August 2, 2019

Save the Date

Friday, August 2, 2019

Location: University of Wyoming – Laramie, WY

Sponsor: TSS

We will be touring the new BSL-3 lab.

More information to come

If you are interested in presenting at this meeting or have a topic you would like to learn more about – We are particularly looker for speakers/topics around FIELD BIOSAFETY please contact Zachary Wilson ( please contact Zachary Wilson (

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NIH Guideline Updates

April 25, 2019, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) finalized a proposal to amend the NIH Guidelines for Research Involving Recombinant or Synthetic Nucleic Acid Molecules (NIH Guidelines) to streamline the oversight of gene therapy research. This proposal, which was developed in conjunction with the Food and Drug Administration, included amending the NIH Guidelines to eliminate duplicative review and reporting requirements for human gene transfer protocols and refocuses the role of the NIH Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RAC) as a transparent forum for science, safety, and ethics of emerging biotechnologies. After a 60-day public comment period, the NIH Guidelines have been updated to reflect these changes and the RAC has been renamed the Novel and Exceptional Technology and Research Advisory Committee (NExTRAC).  

Please note that the roles and responsibilities of Institutional Biosafety Committees (IBCs) to review gene therapy protocols have been modified so that they are consistent with the review of other research covered under the NIH Guidelines. Gene therapy protocols remain subject to Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other clinical trial regulations, and only after FDA, Institutional Biosafety Committee, Institutional Review Boards, and other relevant approvals are in place can these protocols proceed.

Please also note the mailbox previously listed in the NIH Guidelines is no longer operational.  All questions should instead be sent to

For more information about these important changes, please see the following NIH resources.

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Upcoming Training

The 16th Annual Biosafety and Biosecurity Training Course will be held in Fort Collins, Colorado, at the Hilton Fort Collins hotel.

The BBTC 2019 Hilton Fort Collins room rates are $129 per night for single or double. Hotel room rates may change without notice.  The cutoff date for hotel reservations is Monday, June 17, 2019. The hotel phone number is 970-482-2626. Call the hotel to reserve your special group room rate under the group/block name of “Biosafety and Biosecurity Training“, or use the on-line custom room reservation link found at the BBTC website.

Please check the website for updates.

Animal Session: July 8-9, will be animal oriented. Topics to be covered include large animal ABSL–2 and –3 facilities design, containment and management; Laboratory animal ABSL–2 and –3 facilities design, containment and management; Prion disease research Biosafety; Field Investigations; and Select Agent inspection preparations.

General Session: July 9, 10, 11, will be general Biosafety and Biosecurity. Topics to be covered include Risk assessment; Entity specific inspection and audit preparations and responses; Select Agent regulations and changes, administration, and inspection preparations; Design and management of insectaries; HEPA filters and biosafety cabinet certification; BSL-2 and BSL-3 building design and operations; Dual Use Research of Concern Guidelines/Oversight; and Clinical and Public Health Lab Biosafety.

Plant Session: July 11-12, will be plant oriented: Greenhouse design and management; Modern greenhouse tour; Regulations and permit procedures; Containment of recombinant plants and synthetic biology; Infectious disease research with plants; Biopharmaceuticals; Plant disease diagnostic lab network; Diseases of crops; and Select Agent inspection preparations.

Participants include individuals from universities, private industry, and government.

Please dress casual for the course.

Costs:e cost for the course is:

* Animal, General, and Plant Sessions, (Complete Course) July 8-12: $2100 US Dollars

* Animal and General Sessions: $1900 US Dollars

* General and Plant Sessions: $1900 US Dollars

* General Only Session: $1000 US Dollars

Registration fee includes all lunches, breaks, course materials, a course completion certificate, and a dinner out Tuesday evening, July 9.


The Course is directed by Dr. Robert P. Ellis, CBSP.  For more information, please contact Robert Ellis or 970-567-6607

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2017 Symposium

The FRaBSA Inaugural Biosafety Symposium was held September 29, 2017 in Boulder, CO.

Agenda and links to the video are available in the members only section.

click here

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ABSA Risk Group Database App

Risk Group Database App
FREE for iTunes and Android!

ABSA International created an app for the ABSA Risk Group Database, which is available for Apple and Android devices. The app will allow users to access the ABSA Risk Group Database on their mobile devices.

The ABSA Risk Group Database consists of international risk group classifications for Bacteria, Viruses, Fungi, and Parasites. In many countries, including the United States, infectious agents are categorized in risk groups based on their relative risk. Depending on the country and/or organization, this classification system might take the following factors into consideration: pathogenicity of the organism; mode of transmission and host range; availability of effective preventive measures (e.g., vaccines); availability of effective treatment (e.g., antibiotics); and other factors.

iPhone and iPad Instructions:
You can download the Risk Group Database app in the Apple iTunes store by searching for “Risk Group Database app.”

Android Instructions:
You can download the Risk Group Database app in the Google Play Store by searching for “Risk Group Database.”

The app only works when your device is connected to the internet.

Please send any comments or suggestions about the app to An update is being planned for early October.

ABSA International would like to express our sincere gratitude to the fellows at the National Biosafety and Biocontainment Program (NBBTP) for updating the ABSA Risk Group Database.

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Everett Hanel, Jr. Presidential Award

Biosafety director earns acclaim for securing research pathogens | SOURCE

The Colorado State University officer charged with protecting researchers and the public from infectious research pathogens has received international honors for effective safeguards that support research success.
Bob Ellis, CSU biosafety director, earned the Everett Hanel, Jr. Presidential Award from the American Biological Safety Association for outstanding work promoting biosafety and high professional standards.

full article

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HHS selects nine regional Ebola and other special pathogen treatment centers

HHS selects nine regional Ebola and other special pathogen treatment centers
• Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment in partnership with Denver Health Medical Center in Denver, Colorado

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