Culture Collections

The repercussions of using misidentified cell lines

A recent study published by Horbach and Halffmann (2017) reports on the number of ‘contaminated’ papers in scientific literature in which misidentified cell lines are used. The number of articles referring to misidentified cell lines is not decreasing and a ‘fair and reasonable notifications system’ is therefore required to raise awareness of this issue.

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Equivalence with bacterial reference strains

Thousands of living species are newly described every year and in the microbial world the tree of life is expanding dramatically due to the identification of previously unknown lineages through genome analysis.  For bacteria, the first isolate of a confirmed new species, the type strain, must be deposited within two internationally recognised culture collections

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New panel of heart disease-specific iPSCs

Current therapeutic strategies for a variety of inherited cardiac conditions are mostly symptomatic and they neither take into account phenotypic and genetic disease heterogeneity nor interindividual differences in the response to drugs. Cardiac myocytes (CMs) derived from disease-specific iPSCs represent a novel in vitro system with an unprecedented potential for generating new mechanistic insight into diseases pathophysiology and enabling enhanced assessment of drug efficacy and safety.

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Why Choose Us?

Public Health England (PHE) is the custodian of four unique collections that consist of expertly preserved, authenticated cell lines and microbial strains of known provenance for use in medical science and laboratory healthcare.

All the collections are developed, managed and maintained by highly trained, dedicated staff who work in accordance with internationally recognised quality standards including certification to ISO 9001:2008.

Cultures from the collections are used by scientists who need to reassure themselves and others that the materials they are using are authentic, so the conclusions to their studies are valid and relevant. This is particularly important where research may lead to peer-reviewed publications, for example, in drug discovery and vaccine efficacy studies. Authenticated reference strains are also of paramount importance for clinical diagnostic testing, food, water and environmental microbiology testing and validation studies.

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ECACC ICON Small size

Cell lines

The European Collection of Authenticated Cell Cultures (ECACC) maintains and supplies cell lines and their derivatives such as DNA, RNA and cDNA.



NCTC ICON small size


The National Collection of Type Cultures (NCTC) maintains and supplies over 5,000 bacteria and mycoplasma strains.



NCPV ICON small size


The National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV) maintains and supplies over 700 viruses and viral nucleic acid.



NCPF ICON small size


The National Collection of Pathogenic Fungi (NCPF) maintains and supplies over 4000 fungal strains.


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