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cell culture mediumMcCoy's 5A Medium

McCoy’s 5A (Modified) Medium

McCoy’s 5A culture medium was designed in 1959 by Thomas McCoy et al., originally specifically for the culture of Novikoff Hepatoma cells.


McCoy’s 5A Medium is a modified Basal Medium 5A, which contains reduced glutathione, bacterial peptone and a high concentration of glucose. McCoy’s 5A is widely used in the culture of many types of primary cells, such as bone marrow, skin, gingival, kidney, spleen, lung, rat embryo, omentum, etc. In addition, McCoy’s 5A culture medium was also used for tissue biopsy culture, cell construction, and the culture of some lymphocytes and difficult-to-culture cells.

Ingredients of McCoy’s 5A Medium

Cat No.L-GlutamineAlanyl-GlutamineHEPESPSPPenicillin-streptomycin Solution

L-glutamine (Glutamine)

L-glutamine (Glutamine) is an essential nutrient element in cell culture, but it is unstable in solution and will degrade spontaneously. The amount of L-glutamine can be arbitrarily adjusted according to the research needs of the medium without L-glutamine, and the addition of fresh L-glutamine or its substitutes at the time of use is more beneficial to cell growth.

L-alanyl-L-glutamine (Ala-Glu), also known as alanyl-glutamine and alanyl-glutamyl dipeptide, is an advanced cell culture additive that can directly replace L-glutamine in the cell culture medium. l-Glutamine is an essential nutrient in cell culture, but it is unstable in solution and will, however, it is unstable in solution and spontaneously degrades to produce ammonia and pyroglutamic acid, of which ammonia is harmful to cells, whereas L-alanyl-L-glutamine is very stable in aqueous solution and does not degrade spontaneously. The mechanism of cellular utilization is that during cell culture, cells will gradually release a peptidase into the culture medium to hydrolyze L-alanyl-L-glutamyl into L-alanine and L-glutamine, and then cells will take up and utilize these two hydrolysis products. The process of cellular utilization of L-alanyl-L-glutamyl is similar to the flow-addition culture strategy, in that low levels of L-glutamine are continuously added to the culture medium, thereby increasing the utilization of L-glutamine without generating excess ammonia, which is more conducive to cell growth. L-alanyl-L-glutamyl can replace equimolar L-glutamine, is suitable for all cells, requires little adaptation, and can extend cell culture time. It can also extend the cell culture time and reduce the number of passages, which saves time and money. Cells cultured in medium supplemented with L-glutamine showed a slower reduction in activity than those cultured in a medium supplemented with L-glutamine. The slightly longer delay period is due to the time required for the release of peptidase and the digestion of the dipeptide.


HEPES is an excellent biological buffer, which has no toxic effect on cells. The medium with HEPES can maintain a constant pH range for a longer period of time, which can effectively prevent cell growth from being adversely affected by large pH fluctuations of the culture medium. It can be used in CO2-free incubators.

Penicillin-streptomycin Solution

The penicillin-streptomycin solution, also commonly referred to as “dual antibiotics”, is the most commonly used antibiotic in vitro culture to prevent microbial contamination, in which penicillin interferes with bacterial cell wall synthesis and is particularly effective against Gram-positive bacteria, while streptomycin inhibits bacterial protein synthesis by binding to the 30S subunit of the bacterial ribosome and is particularly effective against Streptomycin binds to the 30S subunit of the bacterial ribosome and inhibits bacterial protein synthesis, which is effective against both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, but is particularly effective against Gram-negative bacteria. The combination of penicillin and streptomycin can prevent most bacterial contamination.

This product contains amino acids, vitamins, inorganic salts and many other components required for the multi-culture of cells, but does not contain proteins, lipids or any growth factors, so the product should be used with serum or serum-free additives.

Cautions of McCoy’s 5A Medium

  • This product has been filtered and de-bacterized and should be used with care for the aseptic operation to avoid contamination.
  • Do not freeze-thaw the product in order to maintain the best use of the product.
  • This product is intended for scientific research or further study use only, not for diagnosis or treatment.

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