Culture, in biology, a colony of living microorganisms, such as bacteria or fungi, grown in a prepared medium (a watery solution of chemicals that supplies the microorganisms with nutrients). Pure cultures are obtained by introducing the organism into a sterile medium and permitting it to reproduce. Bacterial cultures are used commercially in the preparation of food products such as cheese, yogurt, sour cream, and vinegar. Cultures are also useful in the production of antibiotics, vaccines, and other medical compounds, and in the identification of disease-producing bacteria.
See also: Biology.