Staphylococcus epidermidis Biological Agent Reference Sheet (BARS)
|Agent Type||Risk Group||Biosafety Level||Animal Housing Biosafety Level|
Risk Group: RG-1 not associated with disease in healthy human adults
Agent Type: Bacteria
Description: Gram positive, part of normal human flora and less commonly the mucosal flora. Not usually pathogenic, but those with compromised immune systems are at risk of developing infection. A frequent contaminant of clinical samples sent to diagnostic laboratories. S epidermidis has the ability to form biofilms on plastic devices, creating a nosocomial risk.
Host Range: Humans, other mammals Host Shedding: Direct contact, Nasal/mucosal secretions
Route of Exposure to Humans: Direct contact, Mucous Membranes, Percutaneous
Infectious Dose: Unknown Incubation Period: Unknown
Signs and symptoms of infection may include:
- Reproductive Health concerns (i.e. abortion, fetal abnormalities)
Immunizations: None available Prophylaxis*: None Available
*Formal medical advice is obtained during medical consultations with Cornell Health or primary healthcare provider as needed.
|Survival Outside Host||Disinfection|
Can survive on abiotic surfaces usually in the presence of existing biofilms to which it can attach. Good housekeeping and disinfection practices are key in labs handling this organism.
1:10 Bleach Dilution
For more guidance on disinfection see: disinfectant selection.
- High energy-creating activities (centrifugation, sonication, high pressure systems, vortexing, tube cap popping)
- Splash/droplet-creating activities (shaking incubators, liquid culturing, mechanical pipetting)
- Equipment contamination
- Exposed skin/uncovered wounds
Laboratory Acquired Infection (LAI) History: Not available
Laboratory Handling Guidelines
Laboratory Biosafety Level (BSL): BSL-1
|Lab Engineering Controls||Personal Protective Equipment|
Waste Management: Regulated Medical Waste (RMW)
Shipping Guidance: Refer to EHS Biological Materials Shipping
Animal Vivarium Guidance
Animal Housing Biosafety Level (ABSL): ABSL-1
Animal Biosecurity: None
Perform Inoculations: Biosafety Cabinet
Change Cages: Biosafety Cabinet
Exposure and Spill Procedures
Mucous Membranes: Flush eyes, mouth, or nose for 15 minutes at an eyewash station.See: responding to exposures.
Other Exposures: Wash with soap and water for 15 minutes (open wounds, sores, etc.) or a minimum of 20 seconds for areas with intact skin. See: responding to exposures.
Small Spills: Notify others working in the lab. Evacuate area and allow 30 minutes for aerosols to settle. Don appropriate PPE. Cover area of the spill with paper towels and apply disinfectant, working from the perimeter toward the center. Allow 30 minutes of contact time before disposal and cleanup of spill materials. See: spill cleanup
Large Spills: Request assistance from the EHS Spill Team by calling CUPD dispatch. Call 911 from a campus phone or 607-255-1111 from a mobile phone.
Incident Reporting: Immediately report the incident to supervisor and complete the EHS online injury/illness report as soon as possible.
- For students, seek medical attention at Cornell Health or local primary care provider. Call Cornell Health at 607-255-5155 (24-hour phone consultation line) or a local urgent care.
- For faculty and staff, seek medical evaluation with a local primary care provider or urgent care. Cornell Health does not see employees for post-exposure care.
- Emergencies: Call 911 from a campus phone or 607-255-1111 from a mobile phone.
- Otto, M. Staphylococcus epidermidis: The accidental pathogen. Nat Rev Microbiol. 2009 Aug; 7(8): 555-567. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro2182