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About Us

The goal of the UC Irvine BSL-3 Biosafety Training Program is to provide comprehensive integrated training for all high-containment laboratory personnel groups. The program was developed through 9 years of continuous funding support from the Pacific Southwest Regional Center of Excellence (PSWRCE) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  

The training program was instituted to accommodate an important and unmet need of the national and international infectious diseases research community. In 2006, UC Irvine partnered with the National Biosafety & Biocontainment Training Program (NBBTP) to launch a comprehensive training program for biosafety officers & operations and maintenance (O&M) personnel at UC Irvine.

Over 1500 people trained

Since that time, UC Irvine has developed several new training programs to cover all personnel groups responsible for working inside or outside of BSL-3 laboratories. 

The UC Irvine concept of training is based on hybrid models of other training programs with a core concept of applying risk assessment and risk management for all laboratory-associated personnel – from laboratory staff to O&M and emergency first responders. Over a thousand people from across the nation and worldwide have been trained. Some of the institutions served:

University of California, Irvine     University of California, San Diego University of California, San Francisco
University of California, Davis University of California, Los Angeles     University of California, Berkeley
University of California, Riverside University of California, Merced University of Texas, El Paso
University of Pennsylvania University of Southern California New York Medical College
Baylor University Scripps Research Institute Texas A&M
University of Alabama Duke University University of Nevada, Reno
University of Hawaii US Food & Drug Administration >20 corporate entities
>10 public health laboratories personnel from 5 foreign countries Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
National Institutes of Health Army Corps of Engineers US Department of Navy


Several programs available

We offer integrated training for high-containment laboratory personnel in the following areas:

  • Operations and support: Theoretical and practical training in a mock-laboratory setting equipped with state-of-the-art HVAC/air handling and building automation systems, effluent decontamination, biosecurity, including biometric systems and video surveillance. Personnel from all skilled trades have the opportunity to learn basic and advanced laboratory systems operation, preventive maintenance, troubleshooting/diagnostics, and laboratory validation in a hands-on practical real-time setting.
  • Researchers and biosafety professionals: Laboratory personnel and biosafety professionals with oversight responsibilities for high-containment laboratories are trained using a behavioral-based training model. Five day comprehensive and one day annual refresher courses are available.
  • First responders: This comprehensive course prepares supervisors within university and city police and fire departments to train their personnel for responding to incidents with BSL3 facilities. This train-the-trainer course will be taught at UC Irvine’s high-containment training facility.