LABORATORY PROCEDURES FOR PHAGES
REFERENCE NO: PH/2003/01/05
TITLE: SECURITY AND MTA CODES
Due to great differences in respect of pathogenicity, microorganisms have been classified on the basis of hazard by international and national authorities. The World Health Organization (WHO) groups microorganisms according to their hazard in 4 groups. Whereas the definitions of the different risk groups (or classes) are generally agreed, the classification of species to one of the (Risk) Groups 1, 2, 3 or 4 (or Class 1 - 4) may vary in different countries.
Lists of species classified in the European Union in group 2, 3 or 4 has been published in several European directives (see PH/2003/01/03).
A permit from health authorities may be required for the export, import of and/or work with organisms of Risk Group 2, 3 and 4.
1. HUMAN AND ANIMAL PATHOGENS
Risk Group 1: low or very low individual and community risk
A microorganism that is unlikely to cause human or animal disease.
Risk Group 2: moderate individual risk, low community risk
A pathogen that can cause human or animal disease but is unlikely to be a serious hazard to laboratory workers, the community, livestock or the environment. Laboratory exposure may cause serious infection, but effective treatment and preventive measures are available and the risk of spread of infection is limited.
Risk Group 3: high individual risk, low community risk
A pathogen that usually causes severe human or animal disease but does not ordinarily spread from one infected individual to another. Effective treatment and preventive measures are available.
Risk Group 4: high individual and community risk
A pathogen that usually causes serious human or animal disease and that can be readily transmitted from one individual to another, directly or indirectly. Effective treatment and preventive measures are not usually available.
2. PLANT PATHOGENS
The classification of plant pathogens varies for different countries, as the criteria are not only the pathogenicity or virulence of a species or strain, but also its occurrence in a particular country and the availability of possible hosts. Many countries require import permits for certain species.
For the use of or for transport restrictions of plant pathogenic microorganisms national or European directives should be consulted (see PH/2003/01/03).
Data sheets on "Quarantine Pests for Europe" have been published by CAB International in association with the European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization (EPPO) in 1997 (Smith et al. 1997).
3. TOXINOGENIC MICROORGANISMS
Certain toxin producing bacteria and fungi are considered as a potential danger for public health. In different countries national import and/or export restrictions may exist, additionally to the respective European import and export regulations.
4. PREVENTION OF BIOLOGICAL WARFARE PROLIFERATION: EXPORT CONTROL OF DUAL-USE GOODS BY THE EUROPEAN UNION
The "Council Regulation (EC) No. 3381/94 of 19 December 1994 on the control of exports of dual-use goods" is effective from 1 July 1995 and controls the export of biological materials pathogenic to human, animal or plants, of toxins and of genetically modified microorganisms.
These biological materials are listed in Annex I of the Council Decision of 19 December 1994 on the joint action adopted by the Council on the basis of Article J.3 of the Treaty on European Union concerning the control of exports of dual-use goods (94/942/CFSP) (Publication L367/8/CEC of 31.12.1994).
Council Regulation 3381/94 is amended by Council Regulation (EC) No. 837/95 of 10 April 1995 (Publication L90/1 of 21.04.1995).
Council Decision 94/942/CFSP is amended by Council Decision 95/127/CFSP of 10 April 1995 (Publication L90/2 of 21.04.1995).
5. MATERIAL TRANSFER AGREEMENT
Some resources can only be distributed after written consent of the requester not to use the material for commercial purposes and not to distribute it to third parties without prior agreement from the depositor. Such a form (PH/2003/01/05 Appendix 1) is annexed as an example.
Guidelines prepared for CABRI by DSMZ in cooperation with NCCB and NCIMB
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