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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


Location: Plant Genetics Research

Title: MaizeGDB: Curation and outreach go hand-in-hand

item Schaeffer, Mary
item Harper, Elisabeth
item Gardiner, Jack
item Andorf, Carson
item Campbell, Darwin
item Cannon, Ethalinda
item Sen, Taner
item Lawrence, Carolyn

Submitted to: Database: The Journal of Biological Databases and Curation
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/9/2011
Publication Date: 5/27/2011
Citation: Schaeffer, M.L., Harper, E.C., Gardiner, J.M., Andorf, C.M., Campbell, D.A., Cannon, E.K., Sen, T.Z., Lawrence, C.J. 2011. MaizeGDB: Curation and outreach go hand-in-hand. Database: The Journal of Biological Databases and Curation. 2011:Article bar022. Available:

Interpretive Summary: This is a report of how the Maize Genome Database (MaizeGDB) curation activities engage the maize genetics community, both in the supply of data ready for integration into MaizeGDB, and explaining how to access the data. Both the formal and informal interactions that occur are key for the success of our database with a relatively small staff. Formal interactions include data acquistion and curation, regular meetings with our Working Group, tutorials, both on-line and in person, and presentations at various meetings attended by maize researchers. Informal interactions often occur at meetings, but are enormously enhanced by the distribution of our curation staff (Arizona, California, Missouri)and the Maize Genetic Stock Center (Illinois) at locations and within regions that have groups of senior maize investigators. The outcome of this effort is a better informed and effective maize community and by extension, greater productivity in bringing superior maize germplasm to the agricultural industry.

Technical Abstract: This is a brief synopsis of the formal and informal interactions among MaizeGDB ( and maize researchers; and among MaizeGDB and other stakeholders, especially the MaizeGDB Working Group and farmers growing this important crop. Particular note is made of the efficacy in distribution of curation and outreach staff at 3 different locations, which are additional to the locations for database management and software development in Iowa, and that of a key collaborator, the Maize Genetics Cooperation - Stock Center in Illinois. A major means of outreach is in the form of online tutorials, presented in an accompanying manuscript.

Last Modified: 10/15/2017
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