Being fairly new to the world of molecular biology, I would like to ask a tricky question from you: I want to learn more about the safety measures you use during acrylamide gel-pouring. Unfortunately our lab has no written rules, so I have seen wild things (people fingering the mixture with bare hands, etc.).
As far as I understand, One would have to work in lab coat, gloves (nitrile if possible - latex gets penetrated by acrylamide in a matter of minutes), and should not leave any acrylamide mess around (it will get absorbed through the skin if others touch it). I heard that the acrylic substances are pretty nasty, as the limit of no-adverse-effect (NOAEL) is below the 0.5 mg/day/kg level. And if neurotoxicity (risk of paralysis) would not be enough, its also a strong mutagen, causing cancer & translocation on chromosomes (risk of heritable genetic damage). And - if I could forget - ammonium persulfate (APS) and tetramethyl-methylene-diamine (TEMED) are kind of nasty, too! And...we tend to wash the equipments in regular tap water, reusing the pipette tips & tubes I guess that's not the best thing for the environment...
So I would welcome any advice I could use myself and spread to my colleagues as well!
Edited by Mummy, 10 August 2009 - 12:02 PM.