Space Biotechnology and Biomolecular Lab (SBBL)

Inside the SBBL’s main microbiology lab.

The Space Biotechnology and Biomolecular Lab (SBBL) at JPL is a fully renovated lab facility opened in June 2019. SBBL is home to scientists and research staff of the Biotechnology and Planetary Protection group. The facility provides state-of-the-art infrastructure and instrumentation to support cutting-edge research in fields of Planetary Protection, Space Biology and Astrobiology. SBBL contains a main microbiology lab, a fungal lab, and a biomolecular lab supported by a prep room, a supply storage area, a freezer room and a microscope room. The various labs house the latest in molecular biology instruments such as an automated DNA extraction instrument (Maxwell 16, Promega), microfluidics-based platform for the analysis of DNA, RNA and proteins (Agilent 2100 Bioanlyzer), real-time PCR (SmartCycler system, Cepheid and Bio-Rad CFX-96), gel electrophoresis equipment for DNA and RNA separation, as well as polymerase chain reaction (PCR) instruments. SBBL supports a variety of research and technology development tasks including: isolate revival, characterization and identification of samples from the International Space Station (ISS) and from robotic flight projects, development of DNA extraction instrumentation for microgravity environments, Biosafety Level 2 and fungal studies, simulated microgravity studies on microorganisms, vapor hydrogen peroxide sterilization, and bioinformatic analyses.



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