Diverse Plant Research Collection for Academic/Industry Biological Innovation

The Plant Cell Culture Library (PCCL) at UMass Amherst preserves and makes available to the research community an unprecedented more than 2,200 diverse plant species for research and by both academia and industry. The PCCL enables R&D exploitation of monocot, dicot and gymnosperm cultures.

The PCCL is a component of UMass Amherst's plant science program. UMass researchers collaborate toward the goal of discovering valuable molecules from unique plant species and developing processes by which they can be produced in quantities sufficient for medical or industrial applications.

  • Over 2,200 plant species, representing plant diversity worldwide.
  • A globally-unique library for discovery and development of novel leads for health, agricultural, consumer, and industrial applications.
  • Ideal for both identification of new genes and molecules through metabolic pathway analyses and evaluation of extracts in targeted activity assays.
  • This impressive collection is supported by cataloging, database, preservation and standardized procedures for altering gene expression.

    Plants produce over 200,000 different kinds of small organic chemicals called "secondary" or "specialized" metabolites that serve many important roles in plant biology. Plant metabolites have also been exploited for millennia by humans as nutrients, commodities and therapeutics. Despite being a rich source of novel molecules of interest to both basic and applied sciences, only a fraction of the pathways and compounds in plants have been explored. The PCCL is a unique living resource that is now available to the research community to define new pathways and chemistries for progress in synthetic biology, a powerful approach to understanding biological processes and producing new materials.



    PCCL is the largest known collection of living cultured plant materials in the world, and the only such collection in the Western Hemisphere.


    Plant GroupNo. of Families
      Other Basal1
    Collection Map


    The PCCL includes both live specimens and cryopreserved cultures. Innovative approaches for challenging cultures to synthesize new molecules.

    Dedicated technical staffing and excellent facilities.