One of NAICONS key assets consists of a proprietary Strain Library. The NAICONS Strain Library represents a large and diversified collection of different strains with proven potential to produce bioactive compounds: it consists of approximately 45,000 microbial strains, mostly filamentous actinomycetes, deriving from >12,000 different sources. Many of the strains are unique to this library. The majority of the strains were isolated over an 8-year period using proprietary methods, with a focus on strains with uncommon morphology (i.e. not resembling known strains), peculiar physiology (slow growth, preference for particular media) or unusual origin (e.g. marine sediments, wild animal excrements, plant material).
Isolation was accompanied by strong dereplication, which resulted in just few strains from each source. During the creation of the microbial collection, a 16S-guided isolation program was introduced, which allowed the systematic expansion of the library in previously uncultured or unclassified actinomycetes, leading to the discovery of several new taxa with the potential to produce specialized metabolites.
NAICONS' Strain Library has been screened only against a limited number of antibacterial and antifungal targets, and is virtually unexplored in other therapeutic areas.