The MLI Tissue Procurement and Cell Culture Core

Overview of Services

Well-differentiated human airway epithelial cell cultures are instrumental for studying basic and applied aspects of cell biology and physiology relevant to cystic fibrosis (CF) and its treatment. The Marsico Lung Institute (MLI) Tissue Procurement and Cell Culture Core (Core) was established to provide standardized cell cultures for CF research. The Core serves as a central source of normal, CF and disease control cells, tissues and fluids for a wide array of uses. The Core has prepared cells from approximately 8,000 human tissue specimens over the past 35 years, producing over 39 x 109 viable  primary human airway epithelial cells over the past four years. Dr. Scott Randell, Core Director, and staff have extensive expertise in all aspects of tissue procurement and airway epithelial cell culture. An ever-increasing need for cells and services has broadened Core functions to meet the growing research demands to study CF and other lung diseases.

  • Custom Media
    • BEGM MEDIUM: Bronchial epithelial growth media for expansion of cells on plastic

    • ALI MEDIUM: Air-liquid interface media for differentiation of cells on porous supports

    • VALI MEDIUM: Vertex-ALI for differentiation of cells on porous supports (contains Ultroser G)-Please inquire about the availablity of this product prior to ordering

  • Human Bronchial Epithelial Cells (Fresh Cells or Frozen Cryovials at passage 1)
    • Normal Donors: Donor history shows no prior chronic lung disease. Smoker or non-smoker cells available.

    • Diseased Donors: Donor history shows prior chronic lung disease (COPD, Asthma).

    • Cystic Fibrosis Donors: Homozygous severe CFTR mutation - (F508del/F508del).

    • Cystic Fibrosis Donors: Heterozygous F508del/second severe CFTR mutation - (F508del/Other).

    • Cystic Fibrosis Donors: Non F508del CFTR mutations - (Other CF/Other CF).

  • Other Human Lung Cells (Fresh Cells or Frozen Cryovials at early passage)

    • Normal Lung Microvascular Endothelial Cells: No history of prior chronic lung disease

    • Normal Lung Fibroblast Cells: No history of prior chronic lung disease

    • BMI Cell Line - Normal HBE Cell Line: UNCN1T, UNCN2T, UNCN3T - (Internal/External Academic Only)
    • BMI Cell Line - Cystic Fibrosis HBE Cell Line: UNCCF1T, UNCCF2T, UNCCF3T - (Internal/External Academic Only)
  • Well-Differentiated Human Cell Cultures
  • Normal/diseased passage two or three human primary lung epithelial cells, cultured in ALI medium on collagen coated porous membranes
  • Age of maturity ~ 4 weeks in culture
  • Non-smoker or smoker cells available
  • Training
    • The MLI Tissue Core will provide training on basic Core techniques and protocols
  • MTA Handling Fee
    • Cost of supplies used to generate shipments of MTA specimens requested
  • Labor
    • Cost for MLI Tissue Core staff to perform cell culture or other tasks requested by UNC CF investigators

All human cells test negative for mycoplasma, bacteria, yeast and fungi.


Scott H. Randell, PhD | Core Director

Leslie Fulcher / Core Manager  / 919-966-7055 /



Location and Hours of Operation

Location Hours

125 Mason Farm Rd

Marsico Hall #1109A

Chapel Hill, NC 27599

Monday - Friday

8 am - 5 pm


Links and Resources

  1. Tissue Procurement and Cell Culture Core


Name Role Phone Email Location
Leslie Fulcher
Core Manager
1119 Marsico Hall
Allison Williams
Core Lead Technician
1109A Marsico Hall


Search available services: View: by category alphabetically
Human Bronchial Epithelial Cells (HBE) (1)
Well-Differentiated Human Cell Cultures (5)
Training (1)
Human Nasal Epithelial Cells (1)
HBE Primary Cells Expanded using Conditionally Reprogrammed Cells (CRC) Methods (1)