4 Signs You Need a Class II Microbiological Safety Cabinet

This article will explain why you might need a Class II biosafety cabinet. This might not be for you if you are a highly experienced lab user, as we will cover the fundamentals of Class II safety cabinets. 

So what is a Class II Biosafety cabinet? A biosafety cabinet (also known as a microbiological safety cabinet, BSL2 cabinet or Class II Laminar Flow cabinet) is a cabinet that is designed to protect the user from hazardous biological contaminants and the sample from cross-contamination. 

Why might I need one?

  • You are working with biological hazards that you need protection from
    • If you are working with microbiological hazards, you will likely need some level of protection through filtration. Specifically, the filters required are HEPA filters. HEPA filters are designed to capture particulates, including pathogens, dust and spores. A Class II MSC uses a HEPA filter to keep the work area contained and to stop technicians from contamination. 
  • Your sample needs a ISO5 (or higher) clean environment.
    • If you work with samples that could incur cross-contamination from other samples or the laboratory atmosphere, you need at least a Class II cabinet. A BSL2 (Class II Cabinet) features a stream of laminar flow air which is directed onto the work surface to ensure the sample is not contaminated 
  • You need a controlled environment. 
    • If you are performing regular testing where consistency and repeatability are key factors, the controlled environment provided by a class II cabinet will be helpful. With the airflows and air quality calibrated correctly, you can be sure that your results can be relied upon. 
  • Compliance and Regulation
    • If your work is highly regulated, there is a good chance that best practice and safety measures you have in place will be audited regularly. Having the right tools to the right standard in place before an audit is carried out can save a lot of time and problems. 

Overall the main reasons you might need a class II cabinet are related to the type of work you are carrying out, the regulations that you are adhering to and the samples you are working with. 

If you're still not sure which type of cabinet you require, you can always reach out to our expert advisors.

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