SBA - Southern Biosafety Association


Biosafety Related News

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  • 16 Aug 2018 12:56 PM | Brett Haltiwanger (Administrator)

    August 16, 2018

    NIH Releases Proposal to Streamline Review of Gene Therapy Trials; Restore Original Vision of the RAC


    Today, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) issued a notice in the NIH Guide to Grants and Contracts and the Federal Register seeking comment on a proposal to amend the NIH Guidelines for Research Involving Recombinant or Synthetic Nucleic Acid Molecules (NIH Guidelines). Specifically, the NIH seeks to streamline the oversight of human gene transfer clinical research protocols (i.e. gene therapy research) and reduce duplicative reporting requirements already captured within the existing regulatory framework.  As part of the proposal, NIH would remove the protocol submission, review, and reporting requirements under Appendix M of the NIH Guidelines and modify the roles and responsibilities of the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RAC). 

    Comments on the proposal will be accepted through October 16, 2018, and can be made electronically by visiting here.

    For more information about the importance of these proposed changes, please visit the following links.

    Questions about this proposal may be sent to the NIH Office of Science Policy at

  • 05 Jun 2017 8:29 AM | Kristin King

    The SBA 2017 Spring Symposium was held on June 2, 2017 at Tulane University in New Orleans. We would like to thank our hosts for their warm hospitality and help preparing for the event. SBA strives to provide opportunities for education through our symposium and pre-symposium training. Below we have provided the links of recordings of both days. We hope that you can join us for our next symposium. 

    SBA Spring 2017 Pre-Symposium Part 1:
    SBA Spring 2017 Pre-Symposium Part 2:
    SBA Spring 2017 Symposium Part 1:
    SBA Spring 2017 Symposium Part 2:

  • 02 Dec 2016 10:39 AM | Brett Haltiwanger (Administrator)

    The PROTECT (Puerto Rico Testsite for Exploring Contamination Threats) Superfund Research Program (SRP) would like to invite you to attend their next webinar, “Zika Virus Emerging Disease in Puerto Rico: What Public Health Officers Need to Know,” on Monday, December 12th, 1:00 – 2:00pm EST, which will be presented by Dr. Brenda Rivera, the State Epidemiologist for Puerto Rico in the Puerto Rico Department of Health. To learn more about Dr. Rivera, please visit the PROTECT webpage here.  

    This webinar will be presented via WebEx Internet Meeting.  If you are interested in attending, please contact Melanie H. Smith at, or 617-373-2976, to RSVP and receive the WebEx invitation needed to attend. 

  • 14 Oct 2016 2:54 PM | Anonymous

    SBA is pleased to announce the second meeting of the Biosafety Journal Club on Thursday, November 3rd, 2016 at 5:30 pm at the same location as the first meeting, the Operations Control Building (OCB) at 1851 Crosspoint Blvd, Houston, TX 77054. Seth Parker will be presenting a paper titled "Multistate Point-Prevalance Survey of Health Care-Associated Infections" by Magill, et al., (NEJM 370;13, 1198-1208). Please contact journal club organizer, Chad Austin with any questions.

    Event No. SBAJC-20161103-01

  • 08 Sep 2016 8:13 AM | Anonymous

    Biosafety professionals and interested individuals working in and around the Texas Medical Center gathered last week for the  inaugural meeting of the Southern Biosafety Association’s Biosafety Journal Club.

    Envisioned by SBA members as a platform for interested parties to participate in technical discussions regarding recent publications in Biosafety and related topics, the publication discussed last week was from the Bourouiba group at MIT, focused on the fluid mechanics of sneeze ejecta. Biosafety Journal Club presenter and organizer, Chad Austin said that he “chose the paper because of its broad application across Public Health disciplines.”...

    The new SBA Journal Club is being modeled after the highly successful Occupational Medicine Journal Club that is hosted by the UT School of Public Health. The Biosafety Journal Club plans to meet monthly in the TMC area and, if interest develops, around the greater Houston metropolitan area.

    To find out more, visit:

  • 15 Aug 2016 4:44 PM | Anonymous

    In lieu of a Fall SBA Symposium, we encourage you to attend the 59th Annual ABSA International Biological Safety Conference in Grapevine, TX—right in your own backyard!  The ABSA International conference isn’t held in our area very often and this is a wonderful way to network with fellow biosafety professionals and experts in the field from across the globe and gain new perspectives on problem solving tactics and emerging challenges in the profession.  The conference agenda can be located here ( and is sure to have something for everyone.  

    ABSA has graciously offered SBA a booth next to the registration tables at the conference to meet and greet attendees with the intent to attract more individuals to our regional chapter, and we would encourage any SBA member to help us reach out and grow our affiliate chapter.

    SBA will resume our twice per year symposia schedule in the spring of 2017, and we hope to see you this fall in Grapevine!

  • 11 Aug 2016 2:33 PM | Anonymous

    We have had a good handful of responses to the survey and I believe we are ready to schedule our first actual meeting. Based on survey responses, we will schedule the first meeting of the Journal Club for 5:30 pm on Thursday, September 1st 2016 at the UTHealth Operations Center Building (OCB) - 1851 Crosspoint Blvd, Houston, TX 77054. Parking is available on the Northeast side of the building, past the gate.

    Prepare to discuss the research article titled “Visualization of sneeze ejecta: steps of fluid fragmentation leading to respiratory droplets” by Scharfman, et al. A good overview of this group’s research on the physics of public health matters can be found at


    Any changes to these plans will be made on this website which you can subscribe to using the RSS button at the top if you have an RSS reader, or you can contact the organizer, Chad, at to be notified by email or be added to the distribution list.


    Hope To See You There! 

    Event No: SBAJC-20160901-01

  • 30 Jun 2016 3:18 PM | Anonymous

    Have you been wondering what’s new in the world of Biosafety? Maybe you've been looking for a reason to connect with local colleagues. Maybe you’re searching for a way to earn Continuing Maintenance points for ABSA or you’re just curious about this whole “Biosafety” thing in general. Maybe you miss research or are starting to feel rusty when it comes to different hot topics in the biomedical research world. If you resonate with any of the above, I have got some good news for you!

                    Members of the Southern Biosafety Association have been seeking to put together a Journal Club to discuss research or other publications on topics related to Biosafety and Public Health. We plan to host this journal club in a relaxed, friendly environment within the Houston metro area approximately once a month for about an hour after work. We hope to take advantage of Happy Hour specials at some of the local pubs and bars and sit down to talk about a paper of the presenter’s choice. If you’re interested in attending or have some feedback for this idea, please follow the link below to take a general interest survey that will assist us in planning the Journal Club and, hopefully, accommodating everyone who would like to attend.

    Best Regards,

    Chad R. Austin, PhD

  • 24 May 2016 4:29 PM | Kristin King

    OCC2016 Web Head

    JUNE 13-15, 2016 | InterContinental Stephen F Austin Hotel | Austin, TX

    Presented By: The Eagleson Institute in partnership with the Elizabeth R. Griffin Research Foundation.

    With The Support Of: American Association of Occupational Health Nurses (AAOHN); American Biological Safety Association(ABSA); American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM)  


    This annual gathering brings together all those who help safeguard the health of biological laboratory workers in a highly interactive format that encourages sharing among the various disciplines involved. 


    Who should attend?

    • Occupational medicine, infectious disease, and emergency physicians
    • Physician assistants and nurse practitioners
    • Occupational health nurses
    • Biosafety professionals
    • Veterinarians



  • 09 Mar 2016 9:40 AM | Kristin King
    UT Health Science Center at Houston School of Public Health and the Southwest Center for Occupational and Environmental Health are offering a 3 day training course for Biological Safety Officers April 13 - 15th. 

    The following link has more information:

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SBA - Southern Biosafety Association

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