Med. Weter. 72 (4), 211-216, 2016

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Dunisławska A., Płowiec A., Sławińska A., Siwek M.
Contaminations in Animal Cell Cultures
Contaminations of in vitro cell cultures constitute a serious threat to research. Infected cell lines may negatively influence the results of experiments, as well as expose the researchers to problems associated with the termina-tion of the culture and decontamination of the laboratory. This paper presents the most common types of con-taminations in experiments based on animal cell cultures. The key sign that may indicate infection is a de-creased viability of the cell line and, in many cases, destruction of the cells. Depending on the type of infection, specific signs can be observed, and different methods for the detection of the infectious agent can be applied. Typical contaminations include bacterial and viral infections, sprouting fungal and yeasts cultures, or the pres-ence of mycoplasma, endotoxin, protozoa, and invertebrates. In some cases, cross-contamination may occur, in which a cell culture is infected by another cell line. The main source of contaminations is an inappropriate implementation of good laboratory practices by laboratory personnel, as well as the use of non-sterile reagents, plasticware and CO2 incubators. The most common method of fighting cell line infections is the elimination of the infected cell culture and decontamination of the laboratory. In working with cell cultures, it is necessary to observe the rules of sterile work and to know the sources and signs of infection to effectively mitigate the threat.
Key words: contamination, cell culture, animal cell lines