Arthropod Containment Level-2 (ACL-2) lab
The ACL-2 is designed to work with biological agents such as Lyme disease agent (Borrelia burgdorferi), dengue virus, zika virus, West Nile virus, malaria parasite and other infectious agents classified as BSL-2 agents. The ACL-2 is equipped with cutting-edge instrumentation required for a researcher to perform experiments and acquire research data.
Redundant safety features have been built-in to safely (user and environment) work with biological agents such as: double door interlock doors with vestibule, insect screens at the door and HVAC vents, UV-insect trap lights, insect growth chambers, vector containment hoods, and bio-safety cabinets.
The ACL-2 has a dedicated in-vivo Animal Biocontainment Level-2 (ABSL-2) suite to conduct research on small animal models to understand the biology of disease mechanisms and to test/develop vaccines/therapeutics against viral/bacterial infections.
Human challenge suite
At VBL, we have the capacity to use human subjects to test vaccines for mosquito and tick-borne diseases. Human volunteers can be exposed to mosquitoes/tick bites for translational research.
Researchers will go through an extensive training program to safely work with biological agents, ticks and mosquitoes. Only upon successful completion of the training process, users will be given access to conduct research within ACL-2.