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FBS / FCS or other sera. Is there a better alternative?

cell culture fbs serum alternative

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4 replies to this topic

#1 Adeel Masood Butt

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 11:58 PM

Hello Everyone,
I am a post-grad student. I have just started my cell culture work.
I was given the responsibility to finalize the purchase orders for my lab.
It is a newly established lab so we don't know much about the chemical ordering stuff.
I am confused in buying FBS or FCS. Both of them are very expensive as well. so i was
wondering if there is a better alternative to FBS or FCS in terms of price and performance.
Another thing is the suppliers take too much time to deliver FBS/FCS.

Please help as i am waiting from quite long already..
Thanks and Regards



-Adeel-
Adeel Masood Butt (PharmD)

#2 bob1

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 01:59 PM

The alternatives (animal free medium) are not cheap. It pays not to go cheap with FBS as it is critical for much of your cell culture work, thus if you get a bad batch your cells will not grow well and your experiments will be compromised. When you purchase it, make sure that you get a test batch, so that you can test your current cells for growth curves and behaviour. This is very important if you want your experiments to be OK!

#3 Adeel Masood Butt

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 11:56 PM

The alternatives (animal free medium) are not cheap. It pays not to go cheap with FBS as it is critical for much of your cell culture work, thus if you get a bad batch your cells will not grow well and your experiments will be compromised. When you purchase it, make sure that you get a test batch, so that you can test your current cells for growth curves and behaviour. This is very important if you want your experiments to be OK!


Thanks Bob,
but then there are a number of FBS options available, which one do you really prefer?
although I have no limitation on purchase but i don't want to just put a lot of money only for serum because i have to buy
a lot of other chemicals for my primary work which is the development of delivery systems, that's why i want to purchase the serum which is of good quality but not too expensive. I heard about a product name FetalPlex, how about that? although i would like to go with the FBS only but yet need advise from some one very experienced in this..

--Adeel--
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#4 bob1

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 12:40 PM

We use New Zealand FBS for our cell culture, it tends to be more expensive, but the sources are reliable, the animals are antibiotic free and also there is minimal risk of prion diseases (animals are not fed ground up animal bits in NZ). It really really pays not to skimp on the cost of FBS, the best is worth the money in this case. I have never used Fetalplex.

There are quite a few threads on here on choice of FBS, check some of them out.

#5 philman

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Posted 02 April 2012 - 02:38 AM

Most FCS/FBS suppliers will send you small aliquots (25-50ml or so) of different lots of serum for free, you can then test a load of them and test to see which one works best on your cells for whatever it is you want to do.

When I was ordering for my work I was told to avoid serum from north america as the animals are pumped full of antibiotics and other weird stuff over there, although I was never 100% clear on why that made the serum better.





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