Fungal cultures usually require different media than bacteria.
contain additional carbohydrates and are slightly acidic. Refer to the Fungal
Cultures table in the Live Material section for specific media and incubation
temperatures for each culture. Fungal cultures may take a few days longer to
grow than bacterial cultures-between three to seven days.
Maintaining a pure culture is your main goal when subculturing bacteria or fungi. It is
essential to avoid all contaminants. When higher than ambient temperatures are
required, cultures must be maintained in an incubator (or laboratory oven
capable of being regulated at a low enough temperature). Culture dishes should
be incubated upside down, this will prevent excessive accumulation of moisture
from diluting or flooding the surface of the medium. As a means of preventing
the medium in dishes from drying and cracking, and of maintaining proper
humidity, a small container of water can be kept filled in the incubator.
It is not recommended that students randomly culture bacteria or fungi
from biological sources (oral swabs, coughing, spitting, etc.). The potential
for culturing dangerous concentrations of pathogenic forms is too great. As a
wise precaution, culture dishes should be taped shut immediately following
inoculation. For disposal, cultures should be incinerated, autoclaved, or
immersed in, and flooded with, a disinfectant solution. Lysol® type
disinfectants or a dilute chlorine bleach solution are acceptable.