Contact Information for Select Agent Preservation

Dear Colleague:
Given the potential value of select agents for future biomedical research and biodefense efforts, the ASM has been informed by the Office of Science and Technology Policy that the federal government is seeking to assist the microbiology community in preserving select agents that otherwise might be destroyed.

Human, plant, and animal pathogens and toxins are important research resources used in diverse studies ranging from fundamental biology, biodiversity, neurology, and immunology to disease etiology and the development of diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines. Preservation of such resources is in the public interest in order to address disease occurring by natural or intentional means. ASM members are encouraged to try to preserve select agents and/or to transfer select agents to registered repositories where they can be preserved. ASM members are reminded that possession and/or transfer of select agents must be in compliance with the new regulations promulgated by HHS and USDA ( Updates concerning these regulations are regularly posted at the ASM website (

Individuals or institutions in possession of select agents (, who do not want to retain these stocks, should contact Stephen Morse at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). For information on possible registered repositories for select agents and for information on the legal requirements for retention, disposal and/or transfer of select agents, the contact information is:

Stephen A. Morse, MSPH, PhD.
Associate Director for Science
Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Program
National Center for Infectious Diseases
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Ph: 404-639-3559

Ronald M. Atlas, Ph.D., President, ASM
Gail H. Cassell, Ph.D., Chair, Public and Scientific Affairs Board
Janet Shoemaker, ASM Director Public and Scientific Affairs

Updated 20 February 2003