Science: Microbe Zoo

The narrow, three-story brick building at 2112 M Street in Georgetown looks as ordinary as any structure in the District of Columbia. But in the refrigerators that cram its rooms are germs of the world's most terrible diseases. Close beside them are beneficial bugs that flavor cheeses, and turn grain into beer. Last week this microbe zoo was preparing to add another class of inmate: cultures of cells from higher animals, such as cancer cells.

The American Type Culture Collection —the zoo's official name—is the world's biggest bank of microorganisms. Operating under grants from foundations and Government agencies, the zoo is depended...

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