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ATCC Expands Collection of Priority Pathogens to Support Antimicrobial Resistance Research 

News Release

ATCC Global Priority Superbugs support global initiatives for patient care and improved outcomes for hospital-acquired infections

Manassas, VA, United States

May 22, 2019

Today, ATCC, a global leader in biological materials development, in partnership with the Institute for Life Science Entrepreneurship (ILSE), announced the expansion of its Global Priority Superbugs portfolio, which is a comprehensive collection of authenticated priority pathogens used to aid research and development efforts for novel therapies and advanced detection methods for antimicrobial resistance (AMR). This expansion of ATCC’s collection includes the addition of 24 strains of Acinetobacter baumannii, many of which are carbapenem-resistant priority pathogens as indicated by the World Health Organization (WHO). These priority pathogens are remarkably resistant to multiple drugs and are a notorious contributor to hospital-acquired infections.

According to the WHO, antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is one of the leading public health challenges we currently face, with resistant infections being present in every country. AMR contributes significantly to prolonged illness, potential disability, and increased hospital-acquired-infection mortality rates. Despite attempts to generate novel therapeutic strategies to combat infections resistant to common treatments, mechanisms of resistance continue to emerge and spread, worsening the problem. By providing information about these genetic adaptations, ATCC seeks to help researchers working on AMR.

A core component of ATCC’s Incredible 2020 campaign focuses on supporting global health initiatives, including tackling the antimicrobial resistance challenges associated with hospital care. To empower researchers with new models and needed data to develop the best therapeutic and diagnostic tools to combat AMR, ATCC is leveraging advanced scientific technologies and techniques. This includes whole genome sequencing, annotation of AMR genes, drug-sensitivity testing, and the incorporation of new clinical isolates that are most relevant to today’s AMR problem.

“We currently offer over 50 globally sourced strains in our Global Priority Superbugs collection, all of which are highly characterized and tested against nine different drug classes of antibiotics, and represent over 170 antimicrobial resistant genes,” said Joseph Leonelli, PhD, Vice President of ATCC Microbiology and Government Solutions.”

“When developing novel drugs to fight a large-scale issue such as antimicrobial resistance, sourcing pathogen samples through ATCC allows researchers in the field to move forward with research knowing that they have access to authentic sourcing along with meaningful genotypic and phenotypic diversity," added Keith Bostian, PhD, Founder and CEO of ILSE and Dean of the NJCSTM program at Kean University. “The in-depth sequencing data and phenotypic characterization profiles of the ATCC organisms provide an opportunity to address existing issues in antimicrobial resistance while possibly allowing us to get ahead of emerging ones.”

About ATCC

ATCC is a premier global biological materials and information resource and standards organization and the leading developer and supplier of authenticated cell lines, microorganisms, and associated data for academia, industry, and government. With a history of scientific contributions spanning nearly a century, ATCC offers an unmatched combination of being the world’s largest and most diverse collection of biological reference materials and data, and is a mission-driven, trusted partner that supports and encourages scientific collaboration. ATCC products, services, partnerships, and people provide the global scientific community with credible, advanced, model systems to support complex research and innovations in basic science, drug discovery, translational medicine, and public health. ATCC is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization with headquarters in Manassas, Virginia, and a research and technology center of excellence in Gaithersburg, Maryland. 

Contact: Kim Testa, senior director, Corporate Communications & Public Affairs, ATCC, [email protected]