Fwd: Re: teratogens in molecular biol labs?

Joy Frestedt frest001 at MAROON.TC.UMN.EDU
Wed Nov 15 15:37:38 EST 1995

Forget about surveys and extra work.  Every lab in the US is required (I 
believe) to have material safety data sheets for each chemical in the 
facility.  Check the items you will use and do some light reading about 
their hazards and the appropriate precautions for handling - even if you 
are not pregnant.  I think the MSDSs are available over internet - does 
anyone have an address handy - I don't know it.
Joy Frestedt

----- Forwarded message begins here -----
From: Sarah L. Pallas  <spallas at bcm.tmc.edu>
To: womenbio at net.bio.net
Date: 15 Nov 1995 19:17:44 GMT
Subject: Re: teratogens in molecular biol labs?
In article <48c97k$7pl at hippo.shef.ac.uk> Dr Kathryn Platts,
K.Platts at sheffield.ac.uk writes:
>Does anyone know of any advice to pregnant women working in  university 
>molecular biology labs regarding the risks to the unborn child?

At least in the U.S., your university should have an office of
Occupational Health.  They can come into your lab and do a survey of
potential teratogens.  If your university is not cooperative, contact
OSHA at the federal level.  The other thing to do is read the labels on
everything you work with, and have a discussion with the lab head on ways
to reduce your exposure and to get your co-workers to improve their
safety-consciousness if they tend to be sloppy.

Failing that, you could always wear gloves and a respirator all the time!
 And a lead suit, if you use isotopes.  Not too practical.  Under federal
law in the U.S. your institution must protect you and your child from
undue hazards in the workplace.  What they do in the UK I have no

Sarah Pallas
Asst. Professor,
Baylor College of Medicine

------ Forwarded message ends here ------

Joy L. Frestedt
Laboratory Medicine and Pathology
University of Minnesota

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