Cell Line Authentication Guidelines
The findings of the ATCC Standards Development Organization Workgroup (ASN-0002) on Cell line authentication standards were published by the American National Standards Institute in February 2012.
Use STRs to Confirm Identity
Short Tandem Repeat (STR) profiling, is a rapid, reproducible and standardized PCR-based method for the identification of human cells. Used extensively to provide unambiguous identification of individuals, it is the acknowledged Gold Standard for human identity testing.
The standards provide recommendations on the use of STR profiling for authenticating human cell lines, the number of loci to evaluate, and the interpretation and quality control of results.
Authenticate at key intervals in a project when you:
- Establish or acquire a new cell line
- At an early passage (within the first week of culture)
- Not necessary when from a trusted source such as ATCC
- Start a new series of experiments
- Are routinely passaging cell lines
- See inconsistent cell behavior or unexpected results
- Limit passage number because cell lines mutate over time
- Prepare to publish
- Freeze cell stocks to verify purity