November 15-20, 2019

November 15-20, 2019

Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama


Presentations available for download where indicated

Past Conferences
Scientific Program Abstracts | Poster Abstracts

(Abstracts are on locked PDF documents. Password will be distributed by the ABSA office.)

Photos from the conference

Scientific Program

October 14, 2018

International Session

1:00 pm  -  5:00 pm
Ballroom C2/C3

Please join us for a special session on Sunday afternoon before the Opening Reception. The focus will be on the challenges of maintaining sustainable and durable international outreach efforts in biosafety and biosecurity. The session runs from 1:00 – 5:00 pm on Sunday, October 14. Speakers from around the world will present on the challenges of implementing biosafety programs and how to sustain them in often resource challenging environments. There will be a special poster session with posters from over 20 countries and a roundtable discussion where all participants can discuss solutions with international biorisk management experts.


Martin Jones, Chief Biological Safety Officer, Inspiron Biosciences

Sustainable biosafety and and laboratory capacity building for resource-constrained settings – what do we mean? (PDF, 5MB)

Julie E. Fischer, PhD, Research Associate Professor, Georgetown University Medical Center

Durable and Sustainable Technologies for more Energy Efficient Facilities (PDF, 3MB)

New Member Reception

5:30 pm  -  6:30 pm
2nd Floor Foyer

Opening Reception

6:30 pm  -  8:30 pm
Exhibit Hall

Public Health Shared Interest Group

8:30 pm  -  9:30 pm
Room 13

Following the Opening Reception, the Public Health Shared Interest Group will hold their meeting. All public health professionals that are responsible or involved in biosafety within public health or clinical labs are invited. The meeting will take place at the Charleston Convention Center starting at 8:30 pm.

October 15, 2018

ABSA International Credentialing Information Session

7:00 am  -  8:00 am
Room 7

The Credentialing Evaluation and Credentialing Maintenance Boards will host a Q&A session at the conference in Charleston, SC on Monday morning. If you have any questions or concerns or are just looking for guidance on applying for or maintaining your RBP or CBSP, please consider attending this morning session. We will also address any question on the transition of the CBSP from NRCM to ABSA. The session will be held from 7:00 – 8:00 am on October 15.

Monday Morning

8:00 am  -  8:25 am
7:00 – 5:00 pm Registration
9:30 – 4:00 pm Vendor Exhibits
8:00 – 8:15 am

Welcome and ABSA International President’s Address

Master of Ceremonies: Patrick Condreay, PhD, RBP, pc Biosafety Consulting Services, LLC, Carrboro, NC

8:15 – 8:20 am

Local Arrangements Committee Welcome

Sylvie Blondelle, PhD, RBP, Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute, La Jolla, CA

8:20 – 8:25 am

Scientific Program Committee Welcome

Betsy Matos, PhD, RBP, CBSP, Iowa State University, Ames, IA

Session I: Arnold G. Wedum Memorial Lecture Award

8:25 am  -  9:25 am

Introduction: Jessica McCormick-Ell, PhD, RBP, CBSP, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick, NJ

Microbes in Space

Kasthuri Venkateswaran, PhD, DAg, NASA—Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA

Session II: Emergency Response

9:25 am  -  10:25 am

Moderator: Darlene Ward, RBP, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL

9:25 – 9:45 am

Biorisk Management Considerations for Non-Traditional Laboratories (PDF, 14MB)

Sharon E. Altmann, PhD, CBSP, MRIGlobal, Gaithersburg, MD

9:45 – 10:05 am

Novel Exercise Technology to Improve Incident Response Readiness (PDF, 14MB)

Carrie McNeil, DVM, Sandia National Laboratories, Livermore, CA

10:05 – 10:25 am

Transboundary or Emerging Disease Event: We are Here to Help (PDF, 9MB)

Betsy Matos, PhD, RBP, CBSP, Iowa State University, Ames, IA

Exhibits, Posters, and Coffee Break

10:25 am  -  10:55 am

Session III: Public Health

10:55 am  -  11:35 am

Moderator: Anthony Troiano, PhD, RBP, Environmental Health & Engineering, Inc., Needham, MA

10:55 – 11:15 am

Empowering Biosafety Officers: Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL) Maintains Community of Practice (PDF, 7MB)

Michael Marsico, MS, Association of Public Health Laboratories, Silver Spring, MD

11:15 – 11:35 am

Evolving Field of Biosciences: Global Biosecurity Risks and Management Strategies (PDF, 5MB)

Aparupa Sengupta, PhD, MS, RBP, University of California—Merced, Merced CA

Robert I. Gross Student Award & Lecture

11:35 am  -  12:00 pm

Outbreak Detection and Response: Country Prioritization Model for West Africa (PDF, 2MB)

Laurie Wallis, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM

Exhibits, Posters, and Lunch

12:00 pm  -  1:30 pm

Session IV: Poster Session

12:30 pm  -  1:30 pm
Exhibit Hall

Presenters must be available during the session.

Session V: Polio

1:30 pm  -  2:30 pm

Moderator: Dawn Wooley, PhD, RBP, CBSP, Wright State University, Dayton, OH

1:30 – 1:50 pm

Sample Collections and Poliovirus Containment: What’s the Connection? (PDF, 676KB)

Christy Myrick, PhD, RBP, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA

1:50 – 2:10 pm

Poliovirus Containment for Non-Polio Facilities (PDF, 4MB)

Daphne B. Moffett, PhD, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland

2:10 – 2:30 pm

Supporting Containment Standards for Poliovirus After Eradication (PDF, 1MB)

Rocco Casagrande, PhD, Gryphon Scientific, Takoma Park, MD

Session VI: Focus on High-Containment Biosafety

2:30 pm  -  3:30 pm

Moderator: Betty Kupskay, MS, RBP, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN

2:30 – 2:50 pm

Aerosol Monitoring of ABSL-3 Spaces Housing Non-Human Primates Challenged with Coxiella Burnettii (PDF, 1MB)

David Harbourt, PhD, RBP, CBSP, US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, Fort Detrick, MD

2:50 – 3:10 pm

A Pilot Study to Demonstrate the Need for Biosafety Training at the Institute of Sanitary Careers in Morocco (PDF, 4MB)

Tahar Bajjou, Mohammed V Military Teaching Hospital, Rabat, Morocco

3:10 – 3:30 pm

The Department of Defense Response to Shipments of Incompletely Inactivated Bacillus anthracis Spores (PDF, 2MB)

Michael D. Chute, RBP, Department of Defense, Frederick, MD

Exhibits, Posters, and Coffee Break

3:30 pm  -  4:00 pm

Session VII: Regulatory

4:00 pm  -  5:00 pm

Moderator: Judy LaDuc, RBP, University of Massachusetts—Amherst, Amherst, MA

4:00 – 4:20pm

Analysis of CDC Import Permit Program Inspections from 2013 to 2017 (PDF, 1MB)

Thomas Cremer, PhD, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA

4:20 – 4:40 pm

Young v UPS: A Supreme Court Ruling with Applicability to Biosafety Laboratories

Casey Skvorc, PhD, JD, American Public University, Charles Town, WV

4:40 – 5:00 pm

The Story Told by the Volatile Reporting of Incidents from Three Different Types of Laboratory Networks

Mika Shigematsu, MD, RBP, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Tokyo, Japan

Members’ Business Meeting

5:00 pm

Door prizes will be awarded—must be present to win.

October 16, 2018

Tuesday Morning

8:00 am  -  8:05 am
7:00 am – 5:00 pm Registration
9:30 am – 4:00 pm Vendor Exhibits
8:00 – 8:05 am


Master of Ceremonies: Dee Zimmerman, Galveston, TX

Session VIII: Griffin Lecture Award

8:05 am  -  9:20 am
8:05 – 8:20 am

Introduction: Caryl Griffin, MSN, MDiv, Elizabeth R. Griffin Research Foundation, Kingsport, TN

8:20 – 9:20 am

All Appropriate Measures: Biosafety and Biosecurity in an Era of Global Health Threats (PDF, 6MB)

Julie Fischer, PhD, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC

Session IX: Biosafety Hot Topics

9:20 am  -  10:20 am

Moderator: Shelley Jones, MS, RBP, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ

9:20 – 9:40 am

Arthropod Containment Evaluation in an Academic Institution (PDF, 44MB)

Debra Sharpe, MPH, RBP, Sharpe Solutions International, Birmingham, AL

9:40 – 10:00 am

An Overview of Field Research Safety Resources for Biosafety Professionals (PDF, 12MB)

Scott Patlovich, DrPH, CBSP, University of Texas Health Science Center—Houston, Houston, TX

10:00 – 10:20 am

Risk Assessment and Reassessment in a Diagnostic Microbiology Lab (PDF, 7MB)

Lisa L. Steed, PhD, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC

Exhibits, Posters, and Coffee Break

10:25 am  -  10:55 am

Session X: Eagleson Lecture Award

11:00 am  -  12:00 pm

Introduction: Mary Ann Sondrini, Eagleson Institute, Sanford, ME

Using Viruses to Select for Reduced Virulence of Bacterial Pathogens in Human Patients (PDF, 96MB)

Paul Turner, PhD, Yale University, New Haven, CT

Exhibits, Posters, and Lunch

12:00 pm  -  1:30 pm

NextGen Shared Interest Group Meeting

12:00 pm  -  1:00 pm
Room 13

The NextGen Shared Interest Group will be hosting a career panel luncheon at the 61st Annual Biosafety and Biosecurity Conference in Charleston, SC on Tuesday, October 16, 12:00 – 1:30 pm (location TBD). The career panel will feature guest speakers from the biosafety profession in academia, industry, consulting, public health, and government, as well as a recent CBSP-credentialed individual. Speakers will discuss the road to their current positions and what it is like to work in their particular biosafety field. Following a brief introduction from each speaker, the panel will open up for questions and discussion on how to grow and succeed in a biosafety career. All newer biosafety professionals with less than five years’ experience in the field are welcome!

Session XI: Poster Session

12:30 pm  -  1:30 pm

Presenters must be available during the session.

Session XII: Behavior Enhancing Compliance

1:30 pm  -  2:30 pm

Moderator: Maya Nair, RBP, University of North Texas Health Science Center, Fort Worth, TX

1:30 – 1:50 pm

Biosafety in Microbiology Teaching Laboratories (PDF, 3MB)

Emilie Descamps, PhD, Scientific Institute of Public Health (WIV-ISP), Brussels, Belgium

1:50 – 2:10 pm

Canada’s Biosecurity Oversight, Strengthening Biosecurity Risk Assessment (PDF, 545KB)

Genevieve Lacroix, Public Health Agency of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

2:10 – 2:30 pm

Development, Implementation, and Utility of a Survey-based Laboratory Safety Management Tool (PDF, 1MB)

Shannon Keckler, PhD, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA

Exhibits, Posters, and Coffee Break

2:30 pm  -  3:00 pm

Session XIII: Training

3:00 pm  -  4:30 pm