Cell Culture Contamination

Erik Robert Wilson erwg0233 at uxa.cso.uiuc.edu
Mon May 10 16:02:38 EST 1993

We have been getting some weird looking gunk in our cell cultures
and I was hoping that someone has some idea what the problem was,
what to do about it or at least what would be a good place to find
some usefull information.

We are culturing several different types of cells, hybridomas,
lymphoma cells (human and mouse) and CTL lines.  We are using RPMI
plus 10% Fetal Bovine Serum and suplimented with penicillin + 
streptomycin.  Recently some jelly like garbage has started turning
up in several different cell lines.  It does not overgrow the cells
or even cause them to grow much more slowly than usual.  Some of the
cells seem to get caught in it.  We tried filtering the media and 
the stuff seemed to disapear, but when we put some fresh media into
a flask (in the absence of any cells) the stuff appeared in a day or
two and then did not change over the period of about a week.  While
it does not appear to be doing anything harmfull, I am somewhat
paranoid about anything strange in our cell cultures.  I don't know
what it is (or even if it is alive), although I do know perfectly
well what other contaminents such as yeast or bacteria look like.

Any insights would be greatly appriciated (either by email or followup).
                                           Thanking you in advance
                                           Erik Wilson

|    \   o IO             | "If we do not find     | Erik Wilson              |
|-----|      o GANYMEDE   |anything pleasant, at   | University of Illinois   |
|   O |    o EUROPA       |least we will find      | (217) 359-7547           |
|----/         o CALLISTO |something new" -Voltaire| erwg0233 at uxa.cso.uiuc.edu|

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