The Harwell Frozen Embryo and Sperm Archive
The Harwell Frozen Embryo and Sperm Archive (FESA) was founded in the mid-1970s to protect valuable mouse strains against breeding failure, catastrophic losses, genetic drift and genetic contamination while eliminating the need to maintain breeding colonies that are not part of an active research programme. FESA now acts as the sole public UK archiving and distribution centre for mouse strains and offers researchers from the wider scientific community the opportunity to have their strains frozen and archived (see FESA guidelines) at Harwell for FREE.
The Harwell archive presently holds over 450,000 embryos comprising more than 1029 strains. In addition, spermatozoa have been archived from more than 8,000 F1 males generated within Harwell’s ENU mutagenesis programme. Since its inception the Harwell archive has developed into one of the largest collections of mouse strains in the world and holds numerous unique mouse models of human genetic disease.
FESA is a founding member of the European Mouse Mutant Archive (EMMA). This consortium is funded by the European Union to provide a not-for-profit service for the deposition and dissemination of genetically altered mice of interest to the bio-medical research community. All strains submitted to FESA will be deposited within EMMA.