Culture Collections

Culture Collections news

Read about our new products, collaborations, upcoming events and find out about latest scientific developments and announcements. We welcome your feedback and comments - please email culturecollections@phe.gov.uk

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ECACC Nucleic Acid ICONVariety and applications of Nucleic Acid products

Genetic researchers are now learning more about how individual genes work and what they do and study the role that variations in genes play in disease. ECACC provides nucleic acids in a range of  formats from its many hundreds of human cell lines to help researchers with their studies.

 

November 2017

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ECACC CEF cryopreservation ICON

Optimisation of cryo-preservation of chick embryo fibroblast cells 

Chick embryo fibroblasts (CEF) are a useful cellular reagent in virology as they support the growth of many human and animal pathogenic viruses. This study has helped ECACC establish reproducible cell banks of CEF that can be used directly for virus propagation and titration without the need for reverting to primary tissue preparation. 

November 2017

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NCTC Shigella record ICONNCTC and Antimicrobial Medicine: Past, present and future

The 18th of November marked European Antibiotic Awareness Day. NCTC has a proud history of supporting the development of antimicrobial medicine and continues to provide biological materials used in the harmonized measurement of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and bio-resources for modern AMR research.

November 2017

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ECACC media ICON

Growth media: not all culture media is the same

In general terms cultured cells require a sterile environment and a supply of nutrients for growth. In addition, the culture environment should be stable in terms of pH and temperature. Over the last 30 years various defined basal media types have been developed and are now available commercially.

November 2017

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Nagoya World Map ICON

Implementation of the Nagoya Protocol: an update

Life science research and microbiological diagnostics rely on access to global genetic resources.  In 2014, the Nagoya Protocol came into force. It aims to provide a framework for legal clarity to be achieved for providers and users of genetic resources regarding fair access and sharing of any benefits arising from use.

November 2017

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ECACC celebrating 10yrs of HiPSC ICON

Celebrating Ten Years of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

2017 marks the 10th anniversary of the first human induced pluripotent stem cells (HiPSC) and the year of ECACC’s global launch of its collections of over 1,000 HiPSC cell lines (HipSci and EBiSC).

 

November 2017

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NCTC Shigella record ICON

NCTC: We can’t be experts in everything – so can you contribute?

From Abiotrophia adiacens to Zymomonas mobilis, NCTC  microbiologists work with nearly 6000 bacterial strains from more than 900 distinct species in at least 83 different families. The methods used to authenticate the strains ranges from simple microscopy to whole genome sequencing.

 

November 2017

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EBiSC neuron ICON

Webinar - iPSCs: the future of disease research. The development of human iPSC technology offers researchers the ability to more accurately generate physiologically relevant models of disease and normal tissues in the laboratory. Advances in iPSC generation have allowed laboratories to make their own cell lines; however, researchers rarely have the resources needed to establish stocks, undertake quality control and share their own de novo iPSC cell lines.

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October 2017

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NCTC 100th IBMS placement student ICON

In August 2017 Eleanor Hill, became the 100th placement student within Public Health (PHE) to complete the Registration Training Portfolio for the IBMS Certificate of Competence. Eleanor, Biomedical Science undergraduate from De Montfort University, spent a year in the NCTC laboratory gaining experience in microbiological techniques and working in a professional setting in addition to working towards the Portfolio.

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October 2017

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NCTC strain equivalence ICON

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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October 2017

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NCTC picture logo ICONNew species of bacteria are constantly being discovered and described. These new species may differ only slightly or much more significantly from those already described and can be isolated from a variety of sources, including from clinical specimens.

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October 2017

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Book and Pen ICON

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 still increasing and a ‘fair and reasonable notifications system’ is therefore required to raise awareness of this issue.

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October 2017

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Crowd - B&W ICON

Informed consent - ensuring clinical samples are obtained ethically Researchers working with biological samples taken from both animals and humans need to know that the material they are working with has been obtained legally, ethically and with due consideration for the wellbeing, privacy and dignity of the donor.

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October 2017

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EBiSC: New panel of heart disease-specific iPSC ICON

Current therapeutic strategies for a variety of inherited cardiac conditions are mostly symptomatic. 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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October 2017

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NCTC 3000 strains ICON

NCTC 3000 is a collaborative Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) project that was established in 2013 between Public Health England (PHE), the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (WTSI) and Pacific Biosciences (PacBio). Search the new list of sequenced NCTC strains to find genomes that interest you.

 

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September 2017

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Pipetting - ICON

Webinar: Cell Line Solutions for Assay Development and Bioproduction Cultivating and managing productive cell cultures is of critical importance to the biopharmaceutical industry. Recent discoveries using stem cells, advances in cell based therapeutics, and the rapid expansion of the biosimilar market has investigators searching for technologies that will improve their research workflows.

 

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September 2017

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NCPF in research: MALDI ToF - ICON

NCPF in research: MALDI-ToF mass spectrometry for the identification of eumycetoma agents and related fungi The PHE Mycology Reference Laboratory (MRL) has undertaken studies relating to fungi that cause black grain mycetoma. Black grain eumycetoma is a chronic fungal infection and many different fungal species are known to cause it including Madurella species, Falciformispora species and Trematosphaeria grisea.

 

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August 2017

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NCTC Corynebacterium ICON

NCTC is reviewing the toxigenic status of the Corynebacterium strains it curates. Provision of authenticated reference cultures along with comprehensive phenotypic data is an essential part of supporting public health efforts, research and promoting safety in the scientific community.

 

 

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August 2017

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NCTC animals vegetables minerals ICON

A first glance through the 2017 publications citing NCTC bacteria reveals a fascinating insight into the reference strains’ continued importance in emerging microbial developments. Recent focus on microbiomes has changed ideas about the role of microorganisms in human and animal health and disease, and antimicrobial resistance remains a global challenge. 

 

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August 2017

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Ice hockey black ICONNCPV has recenetly added a number of Mumps virus strains of differing genotypes to the collection. Earlier this year a Canadian news channel reported that five Canadian ice hockey players had been side-lined due to mumps. One player’s jaw was so swollen that he assumed it was broken. In the UK mumps is a notifiable infection and high profile outbreaks are often associated with festivals and certain high risk populations.

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August 2017

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Annotated electrophrenogram ICONECACC has recently launched a new service for human cell line authentication by STR profiling. The process is simple and quick; cells are spotted onto an FTA card and sent for analysis by post at ambient temperature. To help researchers understand the STR profile and report, ECCAC have created several resources on STR profile interpretation.

 

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26 July 2017

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Spectral karyotyping of human lymphoma cell line ICONDepositing a cell line with ECACC: the strengths of quality control, storage and distribution Cell lines are increasingly critical tools for life science research and as concerns over scientific reproducibility grow, it is essential that they are of known origin, and they are valid in terms of identity, freedom from microbial contamination and function. ECACC maintains secure master and working banks of cryopreserved stocks of the cell lines in its collection.

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27 June 2017

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NCTC heater-cooler ICON

NCTC is working to provide authenticated reference strains of Mycobacterium chimaera. The type strain is now available as NCTC 13781.Until fairly recently M.chimaera was a low profile microorganism in the sphere of human infection. However, this changed in 2014 when six cases of severe infection were reported in cardiac surgery patients in Zurich. 

 

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27 June 2017

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NCTC in research Mycobacterium ICON

Many researchers use NCTC strains during the development, evaluation and validation of laboratory methods.  A team at Queen’s University, Belfast, UK, used NCTC Mycobacteria strains to evaluate an assay for the rapid detection of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP) in milk. MAP causes Johne’s disease (JD), a chronic enteric wasting disease that affects domestic ruminants. 

 

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27 June 2017

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Tubes - ICON

Making cell lines more physiologically relevant for toxicology testing: how sugar may not help the medicine go down Thanks to their accessibility, ease of use and suitability for high throughput analysis, cancer derived human cell lines are useful laboratory tools for the screening of the effectiveness and toxicology of potential new drugs.  

 

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22 June 2017

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Gorilla in London Zoo - ICON

Conservation through cell culture ECACC currently supplies  a number of cell lines which were established from species listed under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna - CITES. Scientists can be reassured that the use of these cell lines means that no additional animals have been taken from the wild, or from captive bred colonies to provide biological samples for research use.

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22 June 2017

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Stefan - ICON

Upcoming webinar with Stefan Przyborski More sophisticated models are developing as 3D cell culture technology becomes established and accepted as a means of creating more physiologically relevant cell-based assays.  Methods that are relatively straightforward to use and that recreate the organized structure of real tissues will become valuable research tools for use in discovery, validation studies, and modeling disease. 

 

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06 June 2017

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NCTC: HG3 organisms (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) ICON

Hazard Group 3 bacteria in the NCTC collection In the UK, biological agents are classified into four Hazard Groups (HG1-4). Similar categorisations of biological agents are also seen in other parts of the world. The majority of bacteria within the NCTC collection fall within the HG2 category, however the collection also holds over 500 strains of HG3 bacteria.

 

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26 May 2017

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Nicola 1 - ICON

ECACC: Supporting life science research and technology transfer ECACC has worked closely with UK Research Councils, charities and universities’ Technology Transfer offices to increase the range and relevance of the cell lines available from ECACC for life science research. Working closely with a single contact within a research establishment enables us to fast-track new cell lines into ECACC, making them available for the wider research community as quickly as possible.  

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25 May 2017

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iPSC enhanced - ICON

10 Years of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells: From Theory to Accessible Research Tools In 2006 Professor Shinya Yamanaka first presented the work of his team showing that just four transcription factors were required to transform a skin cell into a pluripotent stem cell. This technology is now called reprogramming and the cells generated from its use are termed induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells.

 

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25 May 2017

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NCPF Colin Campbell ICONExophiala campbellii: a new fungal species. The Mycology Reference Laboratory recently undertook a study of Exophiala species contained within the NCPF collection to see they could distinguish between them using MALDI-ToF technology. Read Dr Elizabeth Johnson’s account of how this investigation led to the identification of a new species.

 

 

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24 May 2017

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Andy at cabinet - ICONCell culture is a critical tool for biological science research. For over 30 years ECACC has been instrumental in the education of cell culture scientists through its regular and internationally renowned cell culture training courses and it is estimated that over this time around a thousand delegates have received direct training at the hands of ECACC staff. 

 

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15 May 2017

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NCPF Emarellia ICONNCPF in research: A new species responsible for black grain mycetoma has been identified. Phylogenetic analyses of 31 isolates that were historically classified as Madurella greisea has given rise to the identification of a new species. The clinical isolates from two international collections were all associated with cases of black-grain mycetoma infection in humans.

 

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03 May 2017

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Tubes ICON

Cell culture: useful websites and publications. There is a growing need for standardisation to enable reproducibility within life science research. As our reliance on in vitro methodologies increases, it is important that researchers have access to resources that help guide workflow and experimental design, and provide basic and up to date guidance to help overcome common pitfalls and challenges encountered in cell culture.

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19 April 2017

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FTA2 ICON

STR profiling using FTA cards for human cell line authentication. ECACC can now offer an STR profiling cell line authentication service where cells are simply spotted onto a special (FTA) card and sent for profiling at ambient temperature. This negates the need to extract DNA from cell pellets and removes the cold chain distribution required for sending cell pellets on dry ice.

 

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19 April 2017

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EBiSC neuron ICON

EBiSC to develop next generation Alzheimer's disease iPSC lines. Gene editing in induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS cells) has within the last couple of years emerged as a valuable tool. One of the most powerful applications is the generation of isogenic lines for patient specific disease modeling.

 

 

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19 April 2017

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NCTC Dynamic Collection ICONNCTC must endure as a dynamic collection of bacteria, accessible and significant to the biomedical scientific community. With this objective in mind we have recently added five new strains that can be used as positive controls for detecting beta-lactamase genes.

 

 

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19 April 2017

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NCTC Murray ICONMurray, microbes, and me - The life of the microbiologist and clinician Professor Everitt Murray is the focus of a recent article in The Microbiology Society’s publication Microbial Genomics. The article by Kate Baker charts Murray’s career and involvement with NCTC.

 

 

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07 April 2017 

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Microbiologist 3D - ICON

3D culture systems are used in many biological science disciplines including cell biology, immunology, tissue engineering and cancer and stem cell researchThis technology can assist in the study of virus-host interactions in a setting which better represents in vivo physiological conditions; tissue-like constructs which are similar to their equivalents in vivo are present allowing for more in depth, accurate and relevant investigations to occur.

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29 March 2017 

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NCTC lyophilisation ICON

Lyophilisation, also known as freeze-drying, is a preservation method achieved through dehydration. The process was developed initially in 1906 and the technique currently applied by NCTC is an adaptation of the method used during World War II to preserve and transport blood serum. 

 

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15 March 2017 

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Microscope - ICONSetting up an inverted phase contrast microscope for tissue culture Often microscope users are unaware of how to set up an inverted microscope and either suffer from low quality images or adopt a trial an error approach to try to improve results.  Understanding how to set up the microscope properly can save time and greatly increase the quality of images and data generated from cell cultures

 

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13 March 2017 

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IWD2017 - ICONInternational Women's Day 2017 Historically women have experienced greater barriers to the same opportunities afforded to men and hostility from the scientific establishment (among others), breeding a range of problems. For the first time in its history the majority of the National Collection of Type Cultures’ (NCTC) senior scientists and curators are women. We pay tribute to the women who shaped and contributed to one of the world’s oldest working bacterial collections as it exists today.

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08 March 2017 

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NCPV Brochure - ICONYou can now learn about the authenticated viral strains and services provided by the National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV) in our new brochure. The brochure helps virologists and quality control scientists understand the range of viral strains relevant to human health that are available from NCPV, their applications and the benefits of depositing their own viral strains in the collection. 

 

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02 March 2017 

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Fleming ICONApproximately one fifth of the bacteria in NCTC are cultures of type strains, which are the strains on which the description of a species is based.  A bacterial species invariably includes multiple strains that are of common origin and show more similarity to each other than to any other strain. We could consider the type strains to be the most important strains in NCTC because they are the points of reference that other strains must be compared with when determining which species they belong to.

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15 February 2017

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Salmonella XLD ICONSalmonella infection is a major global cause of foodborne disease and is frequently transmitted as a result of the consumption of contaminated foods of animal origin; contamination in animal feed is known to be a contributing factor. Rapid methods for identifying Salmonella-free samples are being developed which have the potential to reduce the turnaround time for negative results from three to two days.

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15 February 2017

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Reproducibility - ICON

Reproducibility in pre-clinical life science research. Reproducibility forms the foundation of meaningful scientific research and is an issue which is causing increasing concern. The causes are complex and include lack of validation of key biological reagents and reference material (including cell lines), poor study design, inadequate data analysis and reporting and a lack of robust laboratory protocols. 

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14 February 2017

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ECACC CHOK1 Flask - ICON

CHO cell lines expressing Fcγ receptors – an in vitro tool for antibody based drug discovery. New CHO cell line variants, expressing different classes of Fc gamma receptors (FcγRs) have been deposited exclusively into the ECACC General Collection by Cambridge Enterprise Limited, UK. The variant lines were developed in the laboratory of Dr. Mike Clark at Cambridge University and include five cell lines that express three different human FcγRs including allotypes of FcγRIIa and FcγRIIIa.

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14 February 2017

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ECACC Word on the street - ICON

ECACC cell lines in research: 2016

A review of 80 scientific publications citing the use of ECACC cell lines, published on line during 2016, emphasises the value of cell lines as tools in our quest to understand and combat human diseases. The use of 88 different ECACC cell lines was cited by authors affiliated to organisations in 36 countries, with significant focus on the pathogenesis and treatment of human cancers.  

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13 February 2017

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Aedes mosquito on skin - ICONYellow fever virus is an arbovirus of the Flaviviridae family, pathogenic to humans, and transmitted by mosquitoes (Aedes and Haemogogus species). It is endemic in tropical areas of Africa and South America and although vaccination is available, take-up is low in some endemic areas. In 2015/2016 a large outbreak occurred in Angola and the Democratic Republic of Congo, and in Brazil this year, 47 cases have been confirmed and there have been 45 deaths.

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26 January 2017

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Zika­_CDC_Cynthia Goldsmith ICONNCPV’s global impact in 2016. During 2016 NCPV was at the forefront of the global response to the outbreak of Zika virus that has affected people in up to 70 countries across South America, the Caribbean and the Western Pacific Region since October 2013. We supplied live Zika virus strains or RNA from NCPV Zika strains to 50 different groups of scientists in 16 countries. NCPV also made publically available the first Zika virus strain with extensive genome sequence data isolated from a semen sample

  

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25 January 2017

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NCTC Public Engagement in 2016 ICONHannah McGregor, Quality Control Supervisor at NCTC, tells us about her public engagement activities in 2016.

I am very lucky to work for NCTC - not only because I work with some extraordinary and historical bacteria on a daily basis, but I get the opportunity to share my passion for microbiology with members of the public and potential future scientists.

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19 January 2017

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NCTC New bacterial strains ICONNCTC: New bacterial strains in 2016. We made a record number of bacterial strains available from the NCTC online catalogue in 2016. In total, 98 strains from 20 families were added , a quarter of which were Type strains. Many were included in the NCTC_3000 whole genome sequencing project under taken with the Sanger Institute and PacBio.

 

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19 January 2017

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FBS Screening - ICONECACC offers several thousand cell lines to researchers; the majority of these require serum for growth, which presents the problem of deciding on a suitable supply. Many laboratories batch test sera by setting up multiple cultures, and then performing cell counts at fixed time points. This is time consuming and requires  duplicate counts at every time point to provide sufficient accuracy. At ECACC we have developed an automated method using an IncuCyte live cells analysis system.  

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19 January 2017

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NCPF M. romeroi - ICONNCPF in Research: Phaeohyphomycosis cyst associated with M. romeroi infection. Typically these phaeohyphomycocis infections are caused by fungal species such as Exophiala, Alternaria, Cladophialophora, Phialophora or Curvularia/Bipolaris species. Medicopsis species has also been implicated.  This case study reports the occurrence of an infection at an intravenus cannula site.

  

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11 January 2017

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Culture Collections Icons - ICONEach of our four collections has its own Twitter account where you can keep up to date with our latest news and the wider scientific community.

 

 

 

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22 December 2016

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NCTC E. coli ICONA recent Lancet Infectious Diseases publication by Guillame Méric and colleagues maps the history of Escherichia coli strain NCTC86. Read about the history of this strain from isolation to generation of the whole genome sequence.

 

 

 

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20 December 2016

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Enterobacteriacaea ICONDuring 2016 NCTC bacterial strains and associated data were cited in more than 100 publications by scientists worldwide. We reviewed some of these papers, noting that researchers based at institutes in 52 different countries contributed to this array of studies which reflect the challenges presented to scientists globally in the early 21st century and also important local themes, including some quite unexpected subjects.

 

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08 December 2016

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Detected variants - ICONEach year in the UK around 8,750 people are diagnosed with oesophageal cancer: a type of cancer affecting the oesophagus (gullet).  Mainly affecting people in their 60s and 70s, it is the 13th most common form of cancer. It affects more men than women and has become more prevalent in the last 40 years. It is important that researchers have relevant tools to better understand the disease and to develop treatments and cures.

 

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06 December 2016

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U87MG - ICONThe issue of cell line authentication is prevalent and the technologies for analysis have become more advanced, so it is inevitable that some that have been considered “authentic” for decades may be revealed as being misidentified. When these situations are uncovered it is of upmost importance that the findings are communicated to laboratories using these cell lines.

 

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06 December 2016

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ECACC double ICONProkaryotes such as bacteria display adaptive immunity through a mechanism called CRISPR/Cas. An adapted CRISPR/Cas system has recently been adopted by scientists as a gene editing tool for eukaryoke cells. In a recent study, Nishida and colleagues studied the use of a hybrid vertebrate-prokaryote system for single nucleotide editing.

 

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29 November 2016

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NCPF - Candida - ICONCandida auris is an emerging fungal pathogen first isolated from the ear of a patient from Japan in 2009. It has subsequently been isolated from several sites of infection including the bloodstream and from skin wounds world-wide, and is of concern due to its multi-drug resistant nature and high mortality rate. In addition, C. auris has been shown to have the ability to readily transfer between hospital patients setting it apart from the majority of Candida species. 

 

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24 November 2016

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ECACC cell culture flask - ICONSerum is an essential reagent for cell culture and is included in cell culture media as a source of growth and adhesion factors, hormones, lipids and minerals. One disadvantage to serum use is the possible contamination with viruses. Would you like your NCPV viruses to be grown in serum free media? Complete our customer consultation survey online.

 

 

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17 November 2016

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NCPF Update ICONNCPF is the only culture collection specialising in fungi (moulds and yeasts) pathogenic to humans and animals in the UK. The collection holds over 4,000 strains from at least 100 genera. Read about the types of moulds and yeasts available, interesting strains and how strains from the collection are being used in research.

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17 November 2016

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NCTC Diversity Chart ICONNCTC 3000 is an exciting, large scale whole genome sequencing project. At the end of December 2015, 1070 strains from 27 families had been sequenced from the NCTC collection. Within the last 10 months, nucleic acid from bacteria from many more families has been extracted for sequencing.

 

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08 November 2016

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PLOS ONE A549 - ICONThe A549 lung cancer cell line has been available for many years, however, its ability to serve as a valid model of alveolar type (ATII) cells has been the subject of much debate in the scientific community. Scientists from PHE and Southampton University have used RNA micro array analysis and electron microscopy to demonstrate this treatment may allow the cell line to perform better in experiments. 

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08 November 2016

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Flask and card ICONA number of reports over the past few years have presented data suggesting that a significant proportion of life science research is not reproducible. These reports suggest that as much as 50-70% of academic life science research cannot be reproduced and this is costing hundreds of millions of pounds on the generation of questionable data, which is hampering the success of translational research which leads to successful healthcare outcomes.

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04 November 2016

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Zika sharing data - ICONSince 2015, an outbreak of Zika virus infection has been occurring in the Caribbean, Central and South America. As surveillance for Zika virus infection improves, further cases are expected to be reported in these regions and previously unaffected countries, territories and areas. Read more about Zika virus and the WHO 'Zika Open' an access area online for researchers to share data and publications.

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27 October 2016

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Salmonella Icon'SMI TP NCTC set (17 strains)'   Culture Collections now provide a cost effective means for clinical microbiology laboratories to update their stock cultures of the 17 NCTC bacterial strains needed for the tests described in the most recent versions of the UK Standards for Microbiological Investigations (SMIs) Test Procedures (TPs).

 

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27 October 2016

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How to open glass ampoules - ICONMedical laboratories are currently in a period of transition. Having previously been accredited to CPA (Clinical Pathology Accreditation) standards, most are now working towards UKAS (United Kingdom Accreditation) accreditation to the internationally recognised international standard ISO 15189:2012 - Medical laboratories - Requirements for quality and competence.

 

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11 October 2016

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QRT PCR - ICONCorrect identification of reference genes in cell lines used in QRT PCR gene expression experiments. QRT PCR is a powerful tool to determine relative gene expression in cells that have been exposed to two or more experimental conditions. Proper use of this method requires a step to normalise results obtained for the target genes of interest to those from reference genes. Find out how to identify the most appropriate reference genes to use in your experiments.

 

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04 October 2016

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Fundamentals Course ICON*ALL SPACES NOW FILLED*

LAST REMAINING SPACES AVAILABLE for the Fundamentals of Cell Culture Training Course (11 - 14 October 2016). There are limited spaces left on the ECACC four day cell culture course. Find out more information and secure a place.

 

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22 September 2016

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Over 1500 bacterial isolates sequenced in the NCTC 3000 project ICONIn a bid to improve public health research and clinical diagnostics, over 1500 bacterial isolates have been sequenced as part of the NCTC 3000 project. The project aims to generate reference genomes for 3000 NCTC bacteria and it is hoped that the data will be used to inform and direct research, and to advance clinical diagnostics.

 

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09 September 2016

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DNA - ICONStart of the new term - new cell line project check list. Are you about to start a new research project using cell lines? ECACC has put together a check list to help you get started. Why not order a free copy of our new edition lab handbook or watch our cell culture videos on YouTube. We have hundreds of iPSC lines to order and offer authentication services to ensure that you are not working with cells that are misidentified or cross contaminated.

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08 September 2016

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NCTC in research: Enterococcus faecium – a genomic history of healthcare-associated infection ICONBacterial cultures in the NCTC collection reflect the history of clinical bacterial infections stretching back over 100 years. These strains can be used as a biological resource to map microbial biodiversity. One such recent study undertook whole genome sequencing (WGS) of over 500 Enterococcus faecium isolates, including 11 NCTC strains, to compare genomic characterisation with multilocus sequence typing (MLST).

 

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31 August 2016

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Hospital waters - Pseudomonas Tap - IconPHE Food and Water Microbiology Proficiency Testing (PT) International Meeting - Wed 28 September, London. This is an opportunity for you to update your knowledge on recent developments in food and water microbiology. You will learn about the latest scheme improvements and there will be a session dedicated to ISO updates. You can meet the food and environmental proficiency testing unit team, expert food and water microbiologists as well as other participants.

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24 August 2016

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NCTC in modern research - ICONMicroorganisms and cell lines available from PHE’s Culture Collections are regularly used as characterised controls and in modern research. The research community uses bacterial strains to address questions surrounding the origin and development of AMR in the UK. A study led by scientists at the University of Cambridge used WGS and bioinformatics analysis to characterise Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecalis (VREfs) isolates from UK hospitals.

 

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17 August 2016

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Call for Research Applications to the PHE-MOHS Ebola Biobank - ICONApplication for access to the Ebola virus for use in research is now open via the PHE-MOHS Ebola Biobank. During the Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone in 2014-15, residual clinical specimens and accompanying data were collected from routine diagnostic testing in Public Health England (PHE) led laboratories. Approximately 10,000 samples of which 1,440 are positive for Ebola have been transferred to PHE laboratories in the UK for curation.

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01 August 2016

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HINGE - ICONNCTC 3000 is a whole genome sequencing project being undertaken jointly between Culture Collections, the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and Pacific Bioscience. The project aims to sequence the genomes of 3000 Type and reference strains of bacteria from NCTC. Recently data from the project was used to evaluate and assess a new long read bioinformatics assembling tool for repeat resolution within sequences obtained, named HINGE.

 

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22 July 2016

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Mouse cDNA - ICONOne common question which regularly appears our technical enquiries box is: “Do you have a cell line that expresses our gene of interest?”  Sometimes a literature search provides the answer but often experimental investigation is needed.  Messenger RNA (mRNA) analysis can assess the gene expression of cell lines. Typically a researcher would isolate total RNA from the cell lines under review and convert this to complimentary DNA (cDNA) using reverse transcription.

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11 July 2016

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Aedes mosquito on skin - ICONThe National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV) is pleased to announce the availability of a South American Zika virus strain for the international research community.  As part of the response to the Public Health Emergency of International Concern, Culture Collections of Public Health England has collaborated with the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to make an isolate of the virus, derived from the current outbreak in South America.

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27 June 2016

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The Cancer Moonshot Initiative - ICONThe Cancer Moonshot Initiative. U.S. Vice President Joe Biden is leading the US National Cancer Moonshot Initiative, as announced in Barack Obama’s final state of the union address in January 2016, to accelerate knowledge about the causes and development of cancer and help to find new therapies and cures.

 

 

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03 June 2016

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Project update for NCTC 3000 and NCPV 500 - ICONThe NCTC 3000 project is a public engagement project  undertaken jointly by PHE Culture Collections, the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (WTSI) and Pacific Bioscience. The project will produce 3000 high quality reference genomes from type and reference strains within the National Collection of Type Cultures (NCTC) and 500 viral reference genomes from the National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV).

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18 May 2016

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NIH Guidelines - ICONNew guidelines for grant funding, from the National Institute of Health (NIH), intended to enhance the reproducibility of research, came into effect in January 2016.  Scientific researchers applying for grants from the NIH must now include a file with their application that must describe the methods that will be used in the proposed study. Any applications not meeting these new requirements will be withdrawn.

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26 April 2016

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Haemocytometer - ICONCounting and checking the viability of cells in culture is an essential part of good cell culture practice. In the laboratories at the European Collection of Authenticated Cell Cultures (ECACC) we perform many cell counts every day as we grow and maintain the thousands of cell lines that are held within the collection. The use of a haemocytometer has been the method of choice for counting cells for many years, but it is gradually being replaced with automated methods.

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14 April 2016

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EBiSC logo - ICONLaunch of new European Stem Cell Bank. The European Collection of Authenticated Cell Cultures (ECACC), operated by Public Health England, is a member of the consortium responsible for the newly established European Bank for induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (EBiSC). First pioneered in 2006, human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology makes it possible to study some diseases more effectively under laboratory conditions. 

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04 April 2016

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Shigella dysenteriae - ICONThe National Collection of Type Cultures (NCTC) contributed to the largest genetic study to date of epidemic dysentery caused by Shigella dysenteriae. This research has been published in the journal Nature Microbiology. It indicates that epidemic dysentery, which remains a scourge in Asia and Africa, probably originated in Europe. It also charts the development of the pathogen’s resistance to antibiotics.

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22 March2016

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Cells for growing Zika virus - ICONScientists need to be able to grow Zika virus to understand the pathogenesis and develop new vaccines and diagnostic tests to combat its spread and impact. Public Health England’s European Collection of Authenticated Cell Cultures (ECACC) provides the Vero cell line suitable for culturing Zika virus. This cell line is used by our virologists at PHE’s National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV) to generate authenticated stocks of Zika virus for supply.  

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10 February 2016

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Aedes mosquito on skin - ICONThe World Health Organisation (WHO) has warned that Zika virus, a mosquito-borne arbovirus that can infect humans, may spread across the Americas. More effective diagnostic tests and research studies are needed. Public Health England’s National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV) supplies authenticated Zika virus cultures and RNA for use in research and development projects.

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26 January 2016

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Staphylococcal disease - ICONBacteria from the genus Staphylococcus can cause a wide variety of disease. These range from minor skin infections to urgent medical emergencies. PHE’s National Collection of Type Cultures (NCTC) provides authenticated bacterial strains isolated from diverse clinical cases, including recognised antibiotic sensitivity and resistance control strains.  Recent additions to the collection have novel antibiotic resistance mechanisms

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20 January 2016

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SARS virus particule - ICONScientists and public health experts meeting at the World Health Organisation (WHO) have identified top emerging infectious disease threats.  To support research and development PHE’s National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV) provides authenticated stocks of many viruses prioritised by WHO such as Ebola virus, Rift Valley fever virus and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) virus

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31 December 2015

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Reference materials for norovirus and hepatitis A virus - ICONNorovirus and hepatitis A virus infections are often caused by people unknowingly eating contaminated food such as mussels, oysters, soft fruit and salad leaves. To help food, water and environmental testing laboratories ensure their test procedures are effective, PHE’s Culture Collections, in partnership with the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), provide norovirus and hepatitis A virus reference materials in LENTICULE disc format.        

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22 December 2015

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LENTICULE Disc Red - IconManufacture and supply of bacterial and fungal NCTC/NCPF Certified Reference Materials (CRM) in LENTICULE disc format transferred to Sigma-Aldrich.  This licensing agreement enables Public Health England (PHE) to focus on product research and development while Sigma-Aldrich makes the reference materials readily available to end users worldwide.

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14 December 2015

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Twitter logo - ICON (blue background)Our European Collection of Authenticated Cell Cultures (ECACC) now has a Twitter account. Follow @ECACC on Twitter to receive news, cell culture best practice advice, information on developments in the world of cell culture and how cell culture is supporting the fight against disease.

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02 December 2015

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30 years of ECACC -ICON30 years enabling cell culture. November 2015 marks 30 years since the establishment of the European Collection of Authenticated Cell Cultures (ECACC). ECACC was formed in 1985 to provide a trustworthy source of authentic human and animal cell cultures for use throughout the scientific community.

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05 November 2015

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NCPV user survey (ebola) ICONUser survey for the National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV). We are seeking feedback to help us develop our range of viruses, associated products and supplementary services to meet the needs of end users.  If you are likely to need authenticated viruses, derivatives such as nucleic acid or viral data please take our survey.

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29 October 2015

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ULK cell lines for autophagy research - ICONNew cell lines for autophagy research.  A series of mouse embryonic fibroblasts with different statuses of uncoordinated (Unc)-51-like kinases 1 and 2 (ULK1 and ULK2) are now available from Public Health England's European Collection of Authenticated Cell Cultures (ECACC). These were deposited by Dr Sharon Tooze of Cancer Research UK. 

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20 October 2015

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Gut bacteria iconThe German outbreak O104:H4 Shiga-toxic Escherichia coli (STEC) strain responsible for the largest recorded STEC outbreak of haemolytic uraemic syndrome and bloody diarrhoea is now available from PHE’s National Collection of Type Cultures (NCTC). 

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29 September 2015

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Flask and card ICONCell culture webinar. Amanda Capes-Davis, Chairman of the International Cell Line Authentication Committee (ICLAC), will be presenting a webinar in partnership with the European Collection of Cell Cultures (ECACC) and Sigma-Aldrich on 06 October - What's in your flask? Global answers from authentication testing.

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17 September 2015

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Cell culture combating disease - The Biologist ICONThe September 2015 edition of The Biologist, magazine of the Royal Society of Biology, includes an article by Julie Russell, Head of the Culture Collections.  The article emphasises the importance of cell culture science in fighting disease and commemorates the 30th anniversary since the establishment of the European Collection of Cell Cultures (ECACC).

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07 September 2015

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Microbiology open day for water testing - ICONMicrobiology open day for water testing. An open day hosted by PHE’s National Collection of Type Cultures (NCTC) and Sigma-Aldrich providing an opportunity to discuss key issues in water testing and analysis. The day will feature presentations on significant water testing topics and provide opportunities for discussions with experts.

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25 August 2015

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Conference iconValidating cell culture workshop. A one day workshop run by the European Collection of Cell Cultures (ECACC), the cell culture experts, to help you put current best practice cell culture at the core of your work. Organised jointly by ECACC, part of the Culture Collections of Public Health England, and Sigma-Aldrich.

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10 August 2015

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How to open glass ampoules - ICONHow to open and grow your freeze-dried NCTC bacterial strains. We now have more information to help you open NCTC glass ampoules that includes a video and step by step photos.

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07 July 2015 

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NCTC Brochure iconNew NCTC brochure. You can now learn about the products and services of the National Collection of Type Cultures (NCTC) in one comprehensive publication.  The NCTC brochure presents the range of bacterial strains available, their application and the benefits of depositing bacterial isolates with NCTC. 

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22 June 2015

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Scientists Looking IconCell culture webinar. Professor Valerie Speirs, Professor of Experimental Pathology & Oncology, will be presenting a webinar in partnership with Sigma-Aldrich on 25 June - How to choose the right cell line for your research.

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10 June 2015

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DS Pharma IconECACC and DS Pharma – 10 years supporting cell culture science in Japan. The European Collection of Cell Cultures (ECACC) is pleased to commemorate 10 years of successful collaboration with DS Pharma Biomedical Co., Ltd. (DS Pharma) a subsidiary of Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma in Japan. 

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27 May 2015

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C. diff toxin iconPHE – supporting the fight against Clostridium difficileC. difficile is a spore-forming bacterium that is the major cause of infectious diarrhoea in hospitalised patients, particularly older people or those with a compromised immune system. PHE provides reference strains of C. difficile and purified C. difficile toxins to support research into diagnosis, treatment and prevention of C. difficile infections

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 20 May 2015

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Jim Cooper March 2015 iconCell culture webinar.  Jim Cooper, Cell Biology Applications Scientist from ECACC will be presenting a webinar in partnership with Sigma-Aldrich on 26 March - Cell lines as models: A 30 year journey and what lies ahead. Read more...

 

 

 

23 March 2015

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Ebola iconEbola virus strain UK1 now available from the National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV).  Teams from PHE Culture Collections and High Containment Microbiology departments have worked together to make the strain available.  Supply of the virus is restricted to researchers at institutes with the very highest level of containment facilities. Read more...

 

05 March 2015

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NCTC 3000 Project Twitter iconFollow 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. Read more...

18 February 2015

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NCPF 7868 IconNew 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. Read more...

 

 

12 January 2015

 

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