Mike Jackson, indefatigable blogger and former manager of the IRRI genebank (among other things), is on a mission.
I’m on the editorial board of Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution. I have proposed to the Editor-in-Chief that any manuscript that does not include the germplasm accession numbers (or provenance of the germplasm used) should be automatically sent back to the authors for revision, and even rejected if this information cannot be provided, whatever the quality of the science! Listing the germplasm accession numbers should become a requirement for publication.
Draconian response? Pedantic even? I don’t think so, since it’s a fundamental germplasm management and use issue.
As regular readers will suspect, we’re totally behind Mike’s pedantically draconian suggestion here. We’ve said much the same thing ourselves on occasion. We’ve even taken it a step further and suggested globally unique identifiers for each genebank accession. Well, not entirely coincidentally, Genesys has just announced a major new feature along these lines:
Genesys database was upgraded to allow for enhanced handling of archived accession data. Accession records in Genesys are assigned a Universally Unique Identifier and are accessible with Persistent Uniform Resource Locators.
A step in the right direction? Over to you, genebank data geeks.