Worker exposures to potential occupational hazards of recombinant DNA processes and associated industries were surveyed at Cetus Corporation's research laboratories (SIC-2831) in Berkeley and Emeryville, California on April 9, 1980. The survey was conducted in accordance with section 20(a)7 of Public Law 91-596. About 200 of the 230 persons employed by Cetus worked on research and process development. Laboratories, ventilation systems, exhaust gas filtration, waste products control biological safety cabinets, access barriers, engineering controls, validation procedures, work practices, emergency and accident procedures were evaluated. The design and the operation of laboratories engineering controls and validation procedures were well within National Institute of Health guidelines. Liquid wastes were treated in a bio-waste system and computers monitored ventilation, access areas, safety cabinets, centrifuges, autoclaves and the ambient environment of the laboratories. The authors conclude that the importance of safety and health programs is recognized at Cetus and all research and development work is conducted in a well conceived and adequate work environment. They recommend pre-employment and periodical examinations, immunizations for employees working with pathogens, the maintenance of health records, and the establishment of a registry of all workers employed in recombinant DNA techniques.
NIOSH, Division of Surveillance, Hazard Evaluations and Field Studies, Industry-wide Studies Branch, Industrial Hygiene Section, Cincinnati, Ohio, 19 pages