Green, dumpling-shaped Trichomoniasis parasite with tails.

Biological Resources of the ATCC Protistology Collection

Sep 06, 2012 at 12:00 PM ET


Protists are eukaryotic microorganisms commonly studied due to their ecological relevance in aquatic food chains and their impact on human health. Protistology research and comparative studies are dependent on the accessibility of authenticated biological standards. To meet this need, the Protistology Collection at ATCC houses the largest and most diverse repository of protist cultures in the world. The primary role of the collection has been the acquisition, authentication, preservation, and distribution of reference strains. Characterization of deposited cultures includes a variety of tests such as viability, purity, phenotypic properties, and genotypic analysis. Additionally, over the last decade, resources within the collection have expanded to include genomic DNA and custom services. This presentation will provide an overview of biological resources available in the ATCC Protistology Collection, a discussion on the methods of characterization, benefits of depositing, current research projects, and future perspectives.

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Robert Molestina, headshot.

Robert Molestina, PhD

Senior Scientist, ATCC

Robert Molestina, PhD, is a Senior Scientist at ATCC. He manages the parasitic protozoa collection of BEI Resources and has served as the subject matter expert in the Protistology Laboratory overseeing the development of assays for molecular authentication of protists, optimization of culture and cryopreservation protocols, and implementation of small animal models for in vivo parasite propagation. Dr. Molestina’s recent work at ATCC resulted in the development of quantitative PCR assays to detect babesiosis in blood and proteomic analysis of Babesia infection in vivo. Dr. Molestina received his PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Louisville School of Medicine in Kentucky.