Biocontainment Lab Services (BLS)

The Biocontainment Lab Services (BLS) program develops and supports UW-Madison’s world-class campus facilities and specialized research equipment/systems through a wide variety of services that ensure oversight and federal compliance.

BLS provides the technical knowledge and support to manage facility issues that impact campus health and safety. As new construction continues, buildings are increasingly more sophisticated and extremely demanding. Outside service contracts do not provide the level of oversight and accountability that the UW and EH&S deem necessary to maintain federal compliance.

The BLS program also helps to develop and support educational opportunities to engineering co-op/internship students.

Mission & Vision


The BLS program ensures safe facilities and equipment to comply with the policies, guidelines and regulations set forth by university administration and regulatory agencies. Through BLS, we effectively communicate with faculty, staff and students to provide a safe workplace as prescribed by the DHHS-CDC/NIH, USDA- APHIS and other federal agencies.


Provide engineering and technical services of the highest quality to the university community. Promote the exchange of knowledge and foster teamwork as a leading principle, while in concert with the “Wisconsin Idea.”


Specialized Research Facility Support
We specialize in supporting high-security research facilities, including oversight of Select Agent, BSL-3 and ABSL-3 labs. Our expertise covers HVAC, containment and controls. We offer inspections, system recommendations and safety measures, supporting grant proposals and evaluations. We ensure facilities meet design specs and validate system functionality, particularly in high containment areas. Our services include campus-wide biocontainment facility inspections, 24/7 emergency support, and stakeholder communication.

Teaching and Training
We provide comprehensive teaching and training services on campus, offering online educational resources and training programs for technicians and staff.

Research, SOPs and Documentation
We manage biosafety web pages and publications, ensuring information is up-to-date and accessible. Our team is responsible for the development and maintenance of standard operating procedures (SOPs) and maintains facility-related documentation for BSL3 laboratories to meet regulatory requirements and safety standards.

Project Review and Technical Support
Our role involves reviewing proposed systems and plans, offering recommendations for system improvements, and providing consultation and technical reports to support project development and implementation.

Ventilation Issues/Problems
We address ventilation issues and problems, particularly related to laboratory exhaust systems, and conduct re-entrainment studies to identify and rectify any issues affecting indoor air quality and safety.

Support Decontaminations
We provide support for decontaminations by evaluating and coordinating the process to ensure the safe and effective removal of contaminants.

Direct Contacts

Darren Berger
Biocontainment Facilities Specialist

Matt Dutcher
Biocontainment Facilities Specialist

Tony McGrath
Biocontainment  Program Manger