Hospitals, diagnostic laboratories and medical research organizations have witnessed an upsurge in the generation of biohazardous medical waste during the COVID-19 pandemic. This waste is potentially detrimental to the environment and public health and needs to be adequately decontaminated and disposed. Incineration is the most routinely employed technique to treat biohazardous waste but the method generates a sizable quantity of greenhouse gas emissions and toxic by-products. The current project will assess the efficacy of high-pressure processing (HPP) to decontaminate and reduce the volume of biohazardous waste. HPP is environmentally sustainable, economical and scalable to meet the current need of Canadian hospitals and also offers the added benefit of generating source material for the development of vaccines against COVID-19. The proposed project will bring together the laboratory of Vikramaditya Yadav at the University of British Columbia, one of the leading research groups in synthetic biology and bioprocessing in Canada, and AvantGarde, which operates BC’s only tolling HPP facility, and will deliver an economical and practical solution to the medical waste disposal problem that has been compounded by COVID-19.
Roza Vaez Ghaemi;Gaurav Subedi
Engineering - biomedical
Professional, scientific and technical services
University of British Columbia
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