It has long been recognized that exposure to biohazardous material (bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites, protozoa, biotoxins etc.) and potentially biohazardous material (blood, mammalian cells lines) could have detrimental impact on an individual health; depending upon the organism and health of the individual.


The federal government has mandated specific departments to oversee the use of this material in Canada. Public Heath Agency of Canada regulates human pathogens, while the Canadian Food Inspection Agency addresses animal/plant/ pathogens. Zoonotic agents are jointly monitored.

The University of Ottawa is also concerned about the use of these agents in both research and academic laboratories, and has mandated the Biosafety Committee and OCRO to ensure the safe use and disposal of this material. The Biosafety Program is managed by the Assistant Director, Environmental Management, Biosafety, Radiation and Laser Safety, and the risk management specialist – Biosafety and is designed to assist the user in minimizing the risk of exposure. It is important to note that the increased risk of bioterrorism and agroterrorism has placed this area of research under greater scrutiny. The University is currently enhancing the Biosafety Program to address this concern, without unnecessarily burdening the research community.

Biosafety icon.


Biosafety at uOttawa

Image acquisition of bacterial specimens

Image acquisition of bacterial specimens

To work with microbiological agents, check the Good Microbiological Practices cheat sheet on “Operational Hub”.
Dr. Robert Delatolla from Civil Engineering is doing research on characterizing bacterial species in wastewater biofilms.

Dr. Robert Delatolla doing research

Research on characterizing bacterial species in wastewater biofilms. To obtain the Internal Biosafety Approval for your research, check Getting Started on the Right Foot on “Operational Hub”.
Lab coats hanging on rack.

Lab coats protect you and your science

Check the Lab Coat Selection Guide on “Operational Hub”.

Contact us


Tel: (613) 562-5800 ext. 3153 
[email protected]