Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: April 22, 2008
Publication Date: March 15, 2009
Citation: Kurtzman, C.P., Labeda, D.P. 2009. Type Culture Collections and Their Databases. In: Schaechter, M. editor. Encyclopedia of Microbiology. Volume 6, 3rd edition. Oxford, United Kingdom: Elsevier. p. 306-312. Technical Abstract: Microbial culture collections, also known as Biological Resource Centers, are primary suppliers of microbial cultures (germplasm) for medical, agricultural and biotechnological research and development. Many countries have one or more culture collections, which may specialize in certain microbial groups or may offer a broad coverage of many different microbial groups. Many of the larger collections are International Depositary Authorities under the Budapest Treaty and in this capacity accept patent cultures. A major goal of culture collections is long-term preservation of strains without genetic change. Methods for preservation include freeze-drying (lyophilization), L-drying and ultra cold freezing with liquid nitrogen. Culture collections are also centers of taxonomic and microbiological expertise.