Submitted to: International Journal of Plant Genomics
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: June 16, 2008
Publication Date: July 1, 2008
Citation: Lawrence, C.J., Harper, E.C., Schaeffer, M.L., Sen, T.Z., Seigfried, T.E., Campbell, D.A. 2008. MaizeGDB: The Maize Model Organism Database for Basic, Translational, and Applied Research. International Journal of Plant Genomics. 2008:496957. Interpretive Summary: In 2001, maize became the number one production crop in the world. Today, with the accelerated generation of maize genetic and genomic information, the need for a centralized biological data repository is critical. MaizeGDB (the Maize Genetics and genomics DataBase) is the Model Organism Database (MOD) for maize. In addition to storing and making maize data available, the MaizeGDB team also provides services to the community of maize geneticists and offers technical support. To demonstrate how researchers utilize MaizeGDB, three example usage cases are presented in this paper. Because researchers with very different goals can all utilize MaizeGDB to advance their work, the usage cases are classified by research type: basic, translational, and applied. By specifically enabling researchers to carry out translational and applied research, MaizeGDB plays a part in influencing crop development directly. MaizeGDB facilitates the analysis and application of maize genetic and genomic data for the research community and applied users. The generated centralized resource for maize data enables researchers to leverage comprehensive knowledge on the nature of genetic factors that affect yield and their molecular mechanisms. This will lead to increased yield and will redirect research in such a way that novel uses of maize for food, feed, fuel, and other industrial applications can be devised.
Technical Abstract: In 2001, maize became the number one production crop in the world (with over 614 million tons produced; http://faostat.fao.org). Its success is due to the high productivity per acre in tandem with a wide variety of commercial uses: not only is maize an excellent source of food, feed, and fuel, its byproducts are used in the production of various commercial products. Maize’s unparalleled success in agriculture stems from basic research, the outcomes of which drive breeding and product development. In order for basic, translational, and applied researchers to benefit from others’ investigations, generated data must be made freely and easily accessible. MaizeGDB (http://www.maizegdb.org) is the maize research community’s central repository for genetics and genomics information. The overall goals of MaizeGDB are to facilitate access to the outcomes of maize research by integrating new maize data into the database and to support the maize research community by coordinating group activities.