1. Would any of your project ideas raise safety issues in terms of: researcher safety, public safety, or environmental safety?

No, the materials used in our project are not hazardous and do not pose as a safety or health threat toward any of our team members, the public, or environment.

2. Do any of the new BioBrick parts (or devices) that you made this year raise any safety issues? If yes: did you document these issues in the Registry? how did you manage to handle the safety issue? How could other teams learn from your experience?

While one of our systems is a “toxin-anti-toxin” system, it occurs naturally in E. coli and does not effect other organisms in a toxic manner. Many researchers have used these toxins without further precautions (For example, Ariel Erental of the Institute for Medical Research Israel-Canada)
We are entering in new pairs of toxin anti-toxin pairs, but the parts registry already documents a pair of toxin-antitoxin from E. coli: RelE Toxin.

3. Is there a local biosafety group, committee, or review board at your institution? If yes, what does your local biosafety group think about your project? If no, which specific biosafety rules or guidelines do you have to consider in your country?

The UCSF iGEM Team works under the Biological Use Agreement (BUA) approved by UCSF Health and Safety (EH&S).

UCSF has a Biosafety Committee (, but it was not deemed necessary to meet with them regarding our project because all of our work falls under standard laboratory procedures that have prescribed regulations and safety protocols.

Additionally, the United States has a manual with biosafety guidelines for biological laboratories:

4. Do you have any other ideas how to deal with safety issues that could be useful for future iGEM competitions? How could parts, devices and systems be made even safer through biosafety engineering?

We believe that all parts and devices, especially those created by young scientists on iGEM teams, should be created after consultation with team advisers and mentors. Additionally, the use of a variety of selective markers should be employed to ensure that laboratory strains are only stable in a lab environment.