The main task of the SBB is to assess the risks for human health and the environment potentially associated with any activities involving GMOs and/or pathogens.
As part of a public scientific institute, the SBB holds an independent position with regard to expertise in biosafety.
The risk assessment is performed on a case-by-case basis, according to internationally-agreed scientific methodology and criteria.
The expertise of the SBB covers a broad range of scientific domains in life science such as microbiology, biology, molecular biology, ecology, agronomics and food/feed safety.
Up-to-date scientific knowledge of SBB experts is ensured by regular training, follow-up of literature and participation in scientific meetings.
On specific issues, the SBB can rely on the support of external scientists within the framework of the scientific evaluation of regulatory dossiers and other biosafety-related matters. To this end, a common list of experts shared by the SBB and the Biosafety Advisory Council has been established. The details of the experts included on the common list are entered into a regularly updated database. The list is published on the Biosafety Council website.