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Contamination in an experiment is a headache for any laboratory technician. This error is usually the result of an unintentional interaction with the experiment’s sample. Contamination issues can lead to downtime and a waste of valuable equipment and experiment samples, but there are some ways you can prevent contamination in your biology laboratory.
Use Lab Forceps
Forceps have many uses around the lab space, and one of their main benefits is that they prevent technicians from physically touching samples. Technicians can use forceps to move specimens, adjust slides under microscopes, collect samples and parts, hold sterilized materials, and more.
Wear Protective Laboratory Gear
Every technician knows the importance of wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) for their own health and safety in the lab. However, protective lab gear is also important for preserving the quality of experiments. For example, wearing gloves prevents any skin oils from permeating into your samples or experiments. You should change disposable gloves often in the lab space to prevent cross-contamination.
Clean and Sterilize Equipment Regularly
If your laboratory instruments and equipment aren’t cleaned and sterilized after each use, they can also contaminate your samples. Any laboratory workers or students who use a piece of equipment should know how to wash and sterilize it before storing it safely. This will ensure that any piece of equipment you take from your supplies will always be sterile, and you won’t risk contaminating your research materials.
Keep Your Lab Organized and Clean
Experiments can also become contaminated from the items around them. If you leave used equipment lying around or fail to keep your lab clean and tidy, these conditions can cause your experiments to fail. Always clean, sanitize, and organize your lab at the end of each experiment to prevent contamination and promote efficiency in your space.
Remember these tips to help you prevent contamination in your biology laboratory. By preventing contamination, you can keep your experiments running efficiently and minimize the chance of wasting materials and time.