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Culture Collections

LENTICULE® Discs - Microbiological Reference Material for Internal Quality Control



Public Health England has transferred the manufacture and supply of bacterial and fungal NCTC/NCPF certified reference materials (CRMs) in LENTICULE® disc format to Sigma-Aldrich.  NCTC/NCPF CRMs in LENTICULE® disc format are now available to order from Sigma-Aldrich and their appointed distributors.

Visit the LENTICULE disc listings on the Sigma-Aldrich website


Please note the Norovirus and Hepatitis A virus LENTICULE discs continue to be available from Public Health England; these are not transferring to Sigma-Aldrich. You can browse and search the NCTC LENTICULE® disc collection.


Microbiology laboratories that need to demonstrate competence with their testing procedures will benefit from the use of Public Health England's LENTICULE® discs. These are reference materials (RMs) that contain a certified quantity of pure cultures of NCTC or NCPF microorganisms, mainly those that are used as controls for food, water and environmental microbiology examinations.  In partnership with the Centre for Environment, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science (Cefas), PHE also provides RMs for norovirus (genogroups I and II) and hepatitis A virus.

The discs consist of bacteria, fungi or viruses in a solid water-soluble matrix that is stable for at least one year from manufacture, easy to use and suitable for a wide range of applications. They are produced in accordance with ISO Guide 34:2009 and individually packed for extra convenience. Each pack of 10 LENTICULE discs comes with easy-to-follow instructions and a certificate of analysis.


  • as qualitative or quantitative control strains for routine food, water and environmental testing
  • for method development and validations
  • for use in research studies
  • for training and educational purposes

Complete LENTICULE® discs Listing - Order Form



Note that the LENTICULE discs must be stored at -20°C ± 5°C, although short periods at ambient temperature such as during transportation, does not affect viability. All NCTC and NCPF LENTICULE discs are supplied with a minimum expiry date of three months from date of purchase.


Handling Information

Download Instructions for Use - Bacteria and Fungi LENTICULE discs

Download Instructions for Use – Norovirus and Hepatitis A virus LENTICULE discs

Watch Instructions for processing LENTICULE discs for Reference Materials


Safety Information

Download Material Safety Data Sheet - Bacteria and Fungi LENTICULE discs

Download Material Safety Data Sheet – Norovirus LENTICULE discs

Download Material Safety Data Sheet – Hepatitis A virus LENTICULE discs


UKAS Accreditation

Public Health England is accredited in accordance with the recognised International Guide ISO Guide 34:2009 General requirements for the competence of reference material producers. UKAS certificate ISO Guide 34 2009 


Certificates of Analysis
You can download Certificates of Analysis for each lot number.  Go to the web page for the product, click the 'Certificate of Analysis' hyperlink on the page and then enter the lot number.  View an example of a Certificate of Analysis for the certified reference materials (CRMs).



See individual listings


Batch Information

All orders will be supplied from a single batch


Import Permits

For delivery to the USA a CDC import permit is required. For delivery to Canada an import permit from Health Canada is required.






LENTICULE is a trade mark of Public Health England. The method of preparation and the LENTICULE discs themselves are subject to the International Patent Application published as WO 01/05941.


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