I am writing to you about animal research that requires the use of a Biosafety Level 3 (BSL3) facility. As you know, certain life sciences research is categorized by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) as BSL3: research involving “indigenous or exotic agents that may cause serious or potentially lethal disease through the inhalation route of exposure.” Animal research of this nature is referred to as ABSL3.
UCLA has a strong high containment program with two BSL3 facilities for in vitro research. We do not, however, have dedicated facilities for ABSL3 work. I have been in discussion with Barbara Dillon, Director, UCLA High Containment Program, and Jeffrey Goodwin, Executive Director, Division of Laboratory Animal Medicine, to explore the feasibility of establishing a dedicated ABSL3 facility. I anticipate, however, that even if we can identify appropriate space and secure funds to develop such a resource, it will not be available for some time.
Until the campus can develop facilities for ABSL3 research, all large scale ABSL3 work (e.g., >20 animals for a one-week experiment) must be performed off-site at a collaborating institution or by a Contract Research Organization (CRO). Researchers who prepare grant proposals/contract applications in which there is ABSL3 work should plan and budget accordingly.
Please share this information with the department chairs within your schools and ask them to remind faculty that we do not have dedicated facilities for on-campus ABSL3 work. Accordingly, neither you nor they should approve the submission of grant or contract proposals in which large scale ABSL3 activities are proposed to be conducted at UCLA.
Questions about the BSL3 facility can be directed to Ms. Dillon at email@example.com.
Vice Chancellor for Research and Creative Activities