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CREP_rules_eng Guidelines for management and use of the scientific collection
Collection of Reproductive Tract Microorganisms
at Competence Centre on Health Technologies
CREP (Collection of Reproductive Tract Microorganisms) is a collection of microbe strains and microbiota samples extracted from reproductive tract. The collection is a part of the Competence Centre on Health Technologies (Tervise TAK). Microbe strains and microbiota samples preserved in the collection have been extracted from healthy or infertile individuals, as well as people with inflammatory diseases. Samples have been collected from males, females and male-female couples. The collection contains beneficial lactobacilli and opportunistic pathogens. Main focus of the collection is on the development of probiotics for management of the reproductive tract diseases, as well as analysis of the microbiota composition in case of different health conditions.
The collection follows the recommendations of international organisations, such as ECCO (European Culture Collections' Organization), WFCC (World Federation of Culture Collections), CABRI (Common Access to Biological Resources and Information), OECD Best Practice Guidelines for Biological Resource Centre, and Nagoya protocol.
All biological materials and isolates in the collection are documented. Strict rules are followed for accessing and using of the collection (Recommendation Rec(2006)4 of the Committee of Ministers of member states on research on biological materials of human origin, article 14).
Collection is registered in the World Data Center for Microorganism (WDCM) database as collection no. 1091. Collection belongs to the Estonian National Collection of Microbiology, with a modern database system and a unified website. The collection can be found on the Estonian Electronic Microbial dataBase (EEMB). The collection catalogue is publicly accessible: and
Management and structure of collection
The collection consists of microbe strains and microbiota samples that are collected during scientific research or bought and information in a digital database.
New strains and microbiota samples are added to collection according to the agreement of the acceptance of biological material.
When submitting new samples to the collection, information about the sample is added to the digital database. The database is also updated when new information is obtained about the samples. The updates are managed by the collection administrator who collects necessary information from other staff, researchers and students.
Each preserved item has a unique ID-code which consists on the collection acronym and a number combination.
Biological materials are assigned a code and preserved according to the regulations of the Council of the European Union (Recommendation Rec(2006)4 of the Committee of Ministers of member states on research on biological materials of human origin).
The head and administrator of the collection are responsible for proper usage of the collection and database.
The collection is located in microbiology lab of CCHT, Ravila 19, Tartu 50411, Estonia.
Storage of the samples
The microbe strains and microbiota samples are stored at -80°C in multiple parallels in multiple freezers. Isolated strains are preserved in sterile cryovials containing SKIM-milk medium or in special chemically treated cryosolutions.
The collection is preserved in locked refrigerators. The collection is accessible only for the assigned person, in absence of those persons only to an assigned substitute. No third party has access to the collection.
Conditions for preservation (the temperature and continuous maintenance of the freezers) are managed by the head of the collection. Freezers are equipped with fault detection systems. In case of a malfunction, a message automatically is sent to the person assigned to the collection.
Samples are handled and utilized according to the “Regulations for handling infectious material” legislation (in force since  31.10.2013 nr. 119, RTL 2003, 115, 1831).
Use and availability of biobank
Main task of the collection is to support and promote research and development in the field of microbial communities of the reproductive tract through the collection, processing, storage and making available of the microbial strains and microbiota samples and the related information.
The strains and microbiota samples as well as the information about them are accessible for scientific research and development, according to the MTA (material transfer agreement) in accordance with the Nagoya protocol rules.
The collection catalogue is publicly accessible.


University of Tartu 

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Version 09.11.2021