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M.J. Murdock Diagnostics Foundry for Translational Research

M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust recently established the Biochemical Diagnostics Foundry for Translational Research  that supports the research and development of biochemical diagnostics for translational research. This shared laboratory enables the fabrication, assembly, packaging, and quality control and assurance of diagnostic devices to be evaluated in clinical studies. The facility will also serve the broader research and educational prototyping activities focusing on health innovation. 


Director: Prof. Jonathan Posner
Associate Director: Prof. Ashleigh Theberge

Student/Staff Guidance Committee (preferred one member per active group):

  • Wan-chen Tu (Theberge Group)

  • Cole Martin (Posner Group)

  • Shane Gilligan-Steinberg (Lutz group)

The Student Guidance Committee is a board of students (minimum of three, maximum of five individuals) to discuss and make recommendations on space usage and policies.  Recommendations will be presented to the Director and/or Associate director for approval and implementation.  Representation from all interested laboratory groups is preferred.


The primary Murdock Foundry is located in P101 in the Benjamin Hall Interdisciplinary Building (6116 NE Northlake Pl., Seattle, WA 98195).  The building is restricted via Husky Card, and will require permission from the Director to grant access.  Additional equipment is located in MEB (high precision micro mill, Keyence 3D inspection microscope) and Benson Hall (Raman microscope).

To access equipment to the in the Murdock Foundry, first send an email to the director, Jonathan Posner, requesting access.  Include the UW PI or organization (access to external organizations is available) you are working with and the equipment you wish to use.  All users must join the Murdock Foundry listserve.  To obtain access to Murdock Foundry SOPs and users list, please request access to the this google drive.


Users are required to have taken the listed training provided by UW EH&S.  

Asbestos General Awareness

Fire Extinguisher Training

Biosafety Training

Managing Laboratory Chemicals

UW COVID Training

Prior to access, all users are required to attend a general safety orientation training, provided by a “General Superuser” of the Murdock Foundry.  Users will be required to initial their understanding of the safety policies of the Murdock Foundry.


After a user is granted access to the Murdock Foundry, they are required to receive individual training on a machine prior to using it.  Any listed “Superuser” of that particular machine can provide training.  A list of trained individuals and designated Superusers is maintained HERE.  There may be more than one superuser of a machine.  

At this point in time, there are a large number of machines without superuser ownership.  The first person to set up and use these machines will be designated the superuser, approved by the Director or Associate Director.  At a minimum, superusers should have:

  • satisfactory working knowledge of the instrument/machine and required maintenance
  • be responsible for preventative maintenance
  • draft a SOP document 


Once an individual has been trained on a machine, they are able to access and use the Murdock Foundry.  Users will be added to the Google Calendar (located HERE).  To reserve a piece of equipment, please make a calendar event in the form of “User Name - Equipment” (e.g. “Ben Sullivan - Lyophilizer”).

P101 in Benjamin Hall Building is currently limited to 5 occupants.


There is a small -20C freezer and 4C refrigerator that is available for reagent/material storage.  Reagents should not be left indefinitely, and be removed once work is completed. Ensure that the doors to the freezer and refrigerator remain closed when not in active use.  Please place all of your materials in a tub or other plastic container and clearly label all of your materials with:

  • Contents
  • Name
  • PI name
  • Date
  • Dry cabinet storage is available as well.  There is limited capability to store chemicals.  While there is biohazard disposal available, to minimize waste in the Murdock Foundry, we ask that the majority of waste be brought back and disposed of in respective home laboratories.  There is a small flammables cabinet.


As the Murdock Foundry is a shared environment, it is important that all users have a safe working environment, we follow UW’s EH&S requirements, and an individuals’ work does not impact others’ work. There is a small flammables cabinet.

All new chemicals will require:

  • Entered in P101 MyChem
  • Have a SOP on file
  • Have clearly defined waste streams

Below is a list of restricted materials that SHOULD NOT be brought into the Murdock Foundry:

  • Pathogens or any material classified greater than BSL1
  • High concentration DNA sequences or amplicons (primers and probes are okay)
  • In progress or completed amplification reactions


At this point, machine consumables and reagents are the responsibility of the user to provide. Basic introductory use laboratory equipment (glassware, some plasticwares, gloves, Kimwipes, etc.) are provided complementary for immediate use, continued use requires research groups to maintain disposables. Plastic totes and storage are provided in which research groups can keep their supplies (gloves, pipettes, pipette tips, or any other consumables required for work) for long-term storage.  These plastic totes should be clearly labeled.

At this time, none of the equipment or instrumentation has standing maintenance contracts in place.  Thus, it is the responsibility of the superuser of each machine to outline, document, and perform routine preventative/scheduled maintenance to ensure the equipment is in good working order.

If you believe an instrument isn’t functioning properly and/or an accident occurred, please contact the equipment superuser, Associate Director, and Director.


All publications that result from use of the Murdock Foundry should include an acknowledgement of the Murdock Foundry, such as:  “Part of this work was conducted using equipment in the  Biochemical Diagnostics Foundry for Translational Research supported M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust.”