Culture Collections

Follow us on Twitter - NCTC 3000 Project

Follow the progress of the NCTC 3000 project on Twitter.The project is a collaboration between PHE’s Culture Collections and the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute. We are creating an electronic resource that will present a wide range of novel and historical data for 3000 clinically important microorganisms.  As part of the project we are sequencing and assembling 3000 genomes using long read (Pacific Bioscience) technology.

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New fungal strain now available

Medical research scientists can now obtain a new fungal strain Phialemoniopsis hongkongensis HKU39 from PHE’s National Collection of Pathogenic Fungi (NCPF).  Researchers at the University of Hong Kong recently deposited the strain with NCPF.  Members of the Phialemoniopsis genus are ubiquitous dematiaceous moulds associated with a wide variety of superficial and systemic infections in humans. A paper in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology describes clinical details of the patient the strain was isolated from and the morphological and molecular characteristics of this novel strain.

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Supporting genetic research for 30 years

A diverse range of studies into the genetic basis of conditions affecting human health such as arthritis, asthma, cancer, motor neurone disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease have benefited from PHE’s European Collection of Cell Cultures (ECACC) genetic support services over the last 30 years.  Genetic research groups continue to submit thousands of blood samples to our scientists to process the blood and generate cell lines ensuring a permanent, expandable and renewable source of the donor’s genetic material.

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Why Choose Us?

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

Cultures from the PHE 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.


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Cell lines

The European Collection of Cell Cultures (ECACC) maintains and supplies over 40,000 cell lines and their derivatives such as DNA, RNA and cDNA.





The National Collection of Type Cultures (NCTC) maintains and supplies over 5000 bacteria and mycoplasma strains.





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





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


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