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Culture Collections

ECACC sample

From April 2013 HPA is part of Public Health England.


PHE is 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.

The collections are:

The European Collection of Cell Cultures (ECACC) for cell lines.


The National Collection of Type Cultures (NCTC) for bacteria.

NCTC Logo 

The National Collection of Pathogenic Viruses (NCPV) for viruses. 

NCPV Logo 

The National Collection of Pathogenic Fungi (NCPF) for fungi.

NCPF Logo 

Culture Collections offers a wide range of products and services, which can be viewed at [external link], including:


  • Bacteria and Mycoplasmas
  • Cell Lines and Hybridomas 
  • Viruses 
  • Fungi 
  • LENTICULE Discs 
  • DNA 
  • RNA


  • Cell Culture Management Services
  • Contract Cell Culture 
  • Assay Ready Cells 
  • Cell Line Identity Verification 
  • DNA Extraction 
  • Genetic Support Services 
  • Contract Freeze-Drying 
  • Mycoplasma Testing  
  • NCPV Contract Services 
  • Catalogue Deposits 
  • Patent Deposits 
  • Safe Deposits 
  • Sterility Testing 
  • Training

For more information on the Culture Collections visit the website at [external link].


Culture Collections
Public Health England
Microbiology Services
Porton Down

Website: [external link]
Tel: +44 (0)1980 612512
Fax: +44 (0)1980 611315


External Links