UT-Galveston Selects Bioscrypt for Biosafety Level 4 Lab

Biometrics will be used to guard access to sensitive parts of laboratory that deals with infectious diseases


Bioscrypt Inc., a leading provider of identity verification technology, today announced that the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) has selected Bioscrypt's V-Pass and V-Station biometric access control fingerprint readers to assist in securing its recently commissioned Robert E. Shope, M.D., Laboratory for emerging infectious diseases.

The laboratory is one of four such labs in the U.S. currently operating at biosafety level four (BLS4) -- the highest level of containment of viruses and bacteria -- and is the only full-sized, "space suit" maximum containment laboratory on a university campus in the United States. It will focus on developing drugs, vaccines and tests for pathogens that terrorists might use, including Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, Lassa, and Ebola. Researchers also will study naturally occurring emerging infections such as Rift Valley fever, and Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis.

Security of such a facility is therefore of paramount importance, and ensuring that only trained researchers gain access is critical. For this reason the lab is incorporating Bioscrypt's biometric verification technology at the site.

"It is imperative that access to this facility be closely monitored," said Stanley Lemon, UTMB dean of medicine. "There is no better way to do this than by individually identifying people, using their fingerprint biometric, as they enter the lab among several methods we employ to control access. The lab will play a key role in developing effective therapeutics, diagnostics and vaccines to protect the American public not only against the potential ravages of terrorism but the more awesome threat posed by Mother Nature. Therefore, the use of the most advanced security technology at the access points of the lab is a vital measure."

"By installing Bioscrypt's fingerprint biometric readers to strengthen access control it is evident that the University of Texas Medical Branch is taking every precaution in ensuring the security of the biodefense lab is preserved," said Robert Williams, President and CEO, Bioscrypt. "Implementation at locations of this significance is evidence that Bioscrypt's technology is world class. We look forward to continuing to expand our market leadership in physical access control as the biometric market grows."