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Coronavirus Resources

Credible solutions for critical public health emergencies

The outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in December 2019 has put the health and safety of the global community at risk. The virus has already spread beyond the borders of China, with numerous countries reporting confirmed cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). With the virus continuing to spread and the number of confirmed cases and deaths rising, the World Health Organization has declared the outbreak a public health emergency of international concern.

As in previous public health emergencies such as Zika, SARS, MERS, and the H1N1 2009 pandemic, ATCC stands ready to partner with the dedicated scientists working toward preventing and containing this devastating outbreak. Only through the combined efforts of the global scientific community can we discover the tools and treatments needed to keep humankind healthy and safe. View our resources below to discover how we can support your work toward the development of novel diagnostics and effective therapeutics.

SARS-CoV-2 Reference Materials


Clinically relevant reference materials are an essential component of basic research and diagnostic development. That’s why ATCC has made it a priority to provide heat-inactivated (ATCC® VR-1986HK™) and genomic RNA (ATCC® VR-1986D™) preparations from a strain recently sourced from an infected patient in Washington state (2019-nCoV/USA-WA1/2020). This strain is fully sequenced and serves as the SARS-CoV-2 reference material for the United States. See the recent FDA-approved Abbot RealTime SARS-CoV-2 assay (page 12) for an example of how the genomic RNA preparation can support your critical Limit of Detection testing.

2019-nCoV/Hong Kong/VM20001061/2020

We also offer genomic RNA prepared from a strain isolated from a nasopharyngeal aspirate and throat swab from an infected patient in Hong Kong (2019-nCoV/Hong Kong/VM20001061/2020). The reference-quality genome sequence of this strain is available on the ATCC Genome Portal.

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This genomic preparation was derived from a strain isolated from the sputum of a patient exhibiting respiratory illness who had returned from travel to the affected region of China and subsequently developed clinical disease in Rome, Italy, in January 2020. The reference-quality genome sequence of this strain is available on the ATCC Genome Portal.

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We offer genomic RNA prepared from the Germany/BavPat1/2020 strain. This strain was isolated in January 2020 from the sputum sample of a mildly symptomatic adult male patient that was identified as Patient One in the Bavarian cluster in Germany.

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We now offer genomic RNA prepared from SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.7. This strain was isolated from a nasopharyngeal swab on December 29, 2020, in California, United States. The complete genome of this preparation is available on the ATCC Genome Portal.

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Polyclonal Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Spike Glycoprotein

In our continued efforts to ensure that researchers have access to clinically relevant reference materials, we have developed a rabbit polyclonal antibody prepared against the spike glycoprotein of SARS-CoV-2 (Wuhan-Hu-1). This preparation was ammonium sulfate precipitated from pooled rabbit serum and purified by protein G affinity chromatography.

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COVID-19 antibody

Synthetic Molecular Standards for SARS-CoV-2

Effective immediately, VR-3276SD™ will be replacing VR-3276T™ in our catalog.

  • VR-3276SD™ is identical to VR-3276T™ in construction and sequence.
  • VR-3276SD™ differs from VR-3276T™ only in the operational designation. Whereas VR-3267T™ is an ISO 9001 manufactured product, VR-3276SD™ is manufactured under ISO 13485 guidelines and is therefore suitable for a broader range of usage.

Because the transmission dynamics and pathogenic nature of SARS-CoV-2 are not yet fully known, the utmost care should be taken when handling the virus. Current guidelines from the CDC recommend that the virus should only be handled in a biosafety level 3 facility. While these strict containment requirements ensure the safety of laboratory workers, it has made developing novel molecular-based detection methods challenging.

To address this, ATCC developed four quantitative synthetic molecular standards for use as controls in the development of molecular assays designed to detect and quantify SARS-CoV-2. Because these standards are synthetically derived, they eliminate the need to culture viruses in the laboratory and they are safe to use under biosafety level 1 conditions.

These constructs were developed under ISO 13485 guidance and comprise fragments representing different regions of the SARS-CoV-2 genome. Further, SARS-CoV-2 construct 1 is compatible with the nucleocapsid-targeted real-time RT-PCR primer and probe sets developed by the CDC.

ATCC® No. Description Compatible assays
VR-3276SD Quantitative Synthetic SARS-CoV-2 RNA containing portions of ORF1ab, N, E, nsp12 (RdRp), and ORF1b-nsp14 genes
VR-3277SD Quantitative Synthetic SARS-CoV-2 RNA: containing a portion of Spike 5’ end gene.
VR-3278SD Quantitative Synthetic SARS-CoV-2 RNA: containing a portion of Spike 3’ end gene.
VR-3279SD Quantitative Synthetic SARS-CoV-2 RNA containing the portion of nsp9 and nsp12 (RdRp) genes

Custom Solutions

Looking to outsource your COVID-19–related assays or materials? Let us know — our custom services team can help.

Coronavirus Research Materials

When developing a new assay to detect SARS-CoV-2, having access to other coronavirus strains can be valuable for establishing inclusivity and exclusivity. To support this need, ATCC provides viral strains and nucleic acids representing alphacoronaviruses and betacoronaviruses known to cause disease in humans.


Nucleic acids: 

corona viruses 3D rendering

We also offer a variety of coronavirus strains known to cause disease in feline, avian, and murine hosts, as well as the cell lines and media needed to cultivate them. These materials provide researchers with the tools needed to enhance the development of their assays.

Microorganisms for Specificity Testing

Establishing analytical specificity is an essential part of assay validation, particularly when evaluating diagnostic assays whose results can affect public health. In many cases, the rapid and accurate identification of an infectious pathogen is critical for administering timely treatment and preventing further transmission. To support researchers developing novel COVID-19 detection assays, we have provided a list from the FDA of organisms that are recommended for specificity testing. Explore our portfolio today!

Supporting Products

Cell Lines for SARS-CoV-2 Propagation

To develop new vaccines or test antiviral compounds, researchers need access to virus isolates. However, during the outbreak of a novel virus like SARS-CoV-2, it can be challenging to determine which propagation host is ideal for successful viral replication. In a recent study by Harcourt J, et al., it was discovered that SARS-CoV-2 can replicate to a high titer in Vero CCL-81 and Vero E6 cells in the absence of trypsin. Tseng et al. have also demonstrated viral propagation in the Calu-3 cell line. These cell lines and the media needed to cultivate them are available at ATCC—explore our collection today.

Cell Lines for Enhanced Virus Production

The continual spread of deadly viruses necessitates the development of novel prevention and treatment options. However, the development of a new antiviral vaccine can be challenged by low-yielding manufacturing processes. To address this, ATCC used cutting-edge CRISPR/Cas9 gene-editing technology to develop STAT1 knockout cell lines capable of producing high-titer viral stocks. Discover how these advanced biological models can be used in your vaccine development research.

NGS Virome Standards

The complexities associated with next-generation sequencing have made assay standardization challenging. ATCC has the solution: NGS virome standards. These standards support every stage of your NGS workflow and they serve as superior controls for viral community testing and assay development on any platform, giving you the flexibility needed for your essential research.