Tissue culture became more widely used at this time because of the introduction of antibiotics, which facilitated long-term cell line propagation, although many people were already warning against continuous use and the associated risk of harboring cryptic, or antibiotic-resistant, contaminations [Parker, 1961].

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I’m voting to close this question because it is off-topic (english language usage rather than biology as defined in the help center) and demonstrates a lack of the expected prior research — an internet search would have turned up relevant definitions for both of these words. $\endgroup$
    – tyersome
    Sep 19, 2021 at 18:30
  • $\begingroup$ The natives are more friendly here $\endgroup$
    – user338907
    Sep 20, 2021 at 10:13

1 Answer 1


Harbouring, using harbour as a verb and in this meaning containing/hiding (see 3rd and 4th definitions at Harbour)

Cryptic = hidden/difficult to find - this is how the word is often used in biology, particularly zoology.

  • $\begingroup$ So it means containing hidden contamination. $\endgroup$ Sep 19, 2021 at 8:27
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, that is correct. $\endgroup$
    – bob1
    Sep 19, 2021 at 10:14

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