Fungal Genetics Stock Center
Established in 1960, the Fungal Genetics Stock Center is the main open repository for genetically characterized fungi. The FGSC is a member of the World Federation for Culture Collections and the US Federation of Culture Collections.
As more fungal genomes have been sequenced, the FGSC has re-evaluated the definition of a genetic system. This has led them to expand the collection, with additional materials including strains from genome programs and mutant collections for organisms such as Neurospora crassa, Aspergillus nidulans, Phycomyces blakesleeanus, and Schizophyllum commune.
As a genetic repository, the FGSC has always endeavored to represent the diversity of genetic materials available. To that end, they hold large numbers of strains of a few different species. More specifically, strains from 76 different species representing 23 different genera. Of these, there are more than ten strains for only nineteen different species. These strains have been deposited by 310 different individuals, 64 of whom have deposited only one strain. The FGSC also holds a number of non-accessioned strains including the wild-type strain collection of Dr. David Perkins as well as Neurospora strains from a number of other researchers who have retired. These are held with the understanding that they will keep them as long as space is available. They are not curated and are available on an as-is basis. They also hold 48,000 tagged integrants of Magnaporthe grisea.
In the period from January 1998 to May 2007, the FGSC distributed 10,883 cultures of 4,602 different strains. 2,044 strains were sent more than once. Since the development of the FGSC database in 1987, the FGSC has sent out over 33,000 strains.
Since adding targeted gene deletion strains of Neurospora crassa, Cryptococcus neoformans and Candida albicans to the collection we have distributed well over 400,000 strains.
The FGSC was founded in 1960 at Dartmouth College with a grant from the US National Science Foundation. Dr. R. Barratt was the first Director of the FGSC. The FGSC has moved three times since then and has been housed at Humboldt State University, the University of Kansas Medical Center and, since 2004, the University of Missouri–Kansas City.
The FGSC is supported by the US National Science Foundation under their Living Stock Collection program. The FGSC has been funded under this program since 1960.
One of the main goals of the FGSC is to make research with filamentous fungi (mold) more accessible. To that end the FGSC web-site hosts extensive protocols for Neurospora and Aspergillus. Other materials and services are available on a case-by-case basis.
Most research activities at the FGSC are aimed at adding value to the materials in the collection. Specific projects have included strain improvement, identification of unknown markers and production of multiply marked strains. Recent work includes the characterization of otherwise anonymous temperature sensitive mutations in Neurospora and the development of selectable markers based on TS lethal strains.
The FGSC is a part of the Neurospora Functional Genomics program.