Completion of On-Going Regional Microbial Culture Collections Centre

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Project Overview

Principal Investigator (PI)

Gloria I. B. Obioh

Background Information

Due to their diverse metabolic potentials and established manipulation techniques, Microbes are excellent materials for, and one of the pillars of Biotechnology. Microbial Cultures collections are therefore valuable resources for their conservation and utilization for educational purposes, scientific research in microbial diversity and evolution, molecular research, epidemiological investigations, industrial processes and other bioeconomic activities. The cultures are to serve researchers, scientists, industrialists and stakeholders within and outside the Nigerian borders thereby adding value to our bioeconomy. The current rate of biodiversity loss due to anthropogenic activities places a premium on the need to urgently collect, conserve and develop Nigeria’s microbial heritage.   The preservation, storage and maintenance of the collected cultures in the form that would enable them retain their viability and genetic properties are mandatory routine activities in any microbial cultures collections facility and requires specialized skills. Consequently, the Project is being implemented in line with Resolutions of previously held national Consultative Fora and Experts’ Roundtable.


Objective and Scope

The objective of the Project is to conserve the national microbial heritage and provide pure cultures and genetic materials required for biotechnology applications in agriculture, medicine, industry and environment; and serve as reference library for research and commerce. The broad scope as contained in the Stakeholders Resolutions include:

  1. Completion of the regional Microbial Cultures Collections (MCC) Centre in Port-Harcourt
  2. Development of national Microbial Cultures Collections Website ( and a robust database for documentation and management of the Centre
  3. Capacity building of Project Management Team and Staff on various MCC activities
  4. Regular National and Regional Sensitization Workshops and
  5. Electronic archiving of existing microbial cultures in the country


Key milestones include:

  1. Mapping out of Protocol for Sustainable Management of Nigeria’s Microbial Culture Collections.
  2. Development of a functional National Microbial Culture Collections (MCC) Website ( that is optimized to make it more visible to Search Engines.
  3. Development of a robust database for archiving and retrieving information on indigenous microbial cultures and strains.
  4. Preparation of a Compendium of existing in-country Culture Collection that would be regularly updated.
  5. Hands-on and advanced Trainings of over 20 Staff members on microbial sampling techniques, characterization, standardization, labelling and preservation of isolates.
  6. Repurposing of the DNA Barcoding Laboratory at EBD for Microbial Resources Core Facilities activities to enhance immediate take-off and programme sustainability.
  7. Development of the Draft Business plan for programme sustainability.
  8. Progress made on the construction of the MCC Centre building at Port Harcourt.

Research Details

  • Category:Environmental Biotechnology