Reinforced Clostridial Agar – RCA


Reinforced Clostridial Agar (RCA) is an enriched non-selective medium intended for the cultivation of Clostridia and other anaerobic and facultative bacteria from various clinical and non-clinical specimens.

RCA Agar Plate

C. innocuum (ATCC 14501) Growing On RCA Agar Plate

4 plates per package

Catalog #
AS-6061 RCA mono plate 4 plates

Non-stock item: 25 pack minimum order, allow 2-4 weeks for delivery.

RCA Product InsertRCA SDS

Product Description & Summary

RCA agar is an enriched non-selective medium formulated by Hirsch and Grinstead to enhance the growth of clostridia from a small inoculum. Casein, beef extract, and yeast extract form the nutritive base that supplies a source of carbon, nitrogen, vitamins, and minerals. Dextrose is added as a source of carbohydrates. L-Cysteine is included as a reducing agent. Soluble starch is a detoxifier of metabolic by-products while sodium acetate acts as a buffer. This media is prepared, dispensed, and packaged under oxygen-free conditions to prevent the formation of oxidized products prior to use.

Interpretation of Results & Limitations

If used properly, RCA agar will support the good growth of Clostridia and many other anaerobes isolated from clinical or non-clinical specimens.

RCA agar will not provide complete information for identification of bacterial isolates. Additional test procedures and media are required for complete identification. It is recommended that a non-selective media, such as Brucella Blood Agar (BRU, catalog #: AS-111) also be inoculated from the same clinical specimen to assure recovery of all species present. Consult reference materials for additional information.

Quality Control

The following organisms are routinely used for quality control testing at Anaerobe Systems.


Organism Tested ATCC #


Results Time
Bacteroides fragilis 25285 Growth 24 hrs
Propionibacterium acnes 6919 Growth 24 – 48 hrs
Enterococcus faecalis 29212 Growth 24 hrs
Clostridium difficile 9689 Growth 24 hrs
Clostridium difficile 700057 Growth 24 hrs
Clostridium perfringens 13124 Growth 24 hrs
Clostridium innocuum 14501 Growth 24 hrs
Clostridium sporogenes 3584 Growth 24 hrs
Clostridium beijerinckii 8260 Growth 24 hrs
Clostridium sordellii 9714 Growth 24 hrs

Product Storage & Shelf Life

Storage: Upon receipt, store at room temperature in original package until used. Avoid overheating or freezing. Do not use media if there are signs of deterioration (shrinking, cracking, or discoloration due to oxidation of media) or contamination. The expiration date applies to the product in its original packaging and stored as directed. Do not use product past the expiration date shown on the label.

Shelf Life: 90 days from date of manufacture.