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Stock centers and privacy

Fri May 27 15:57:15 EST 1994

An issue has come up concerning who should have access to certain  
aspects of the records of the Arabidopsis Stock Centers.  We would 
like to hear opinions from the community about the following issues.

1. The cDNA sequencing groups deposit the clones in the Ohio Center.  
We anticipate that there will be more than 20,000 clones available in 
the next few years.  The problem with using EST clones for certain 
purposes is that one cannot be certain that someone else has not 
already done a particular experiment.  In order to try and minimize 
this problem, I think it would be best to know who else has requested 
a particular EST so that one could contact the other parties to see 
if there is likely to be duplication of effort.  This information is 
in the AIMS database and can be made available on line through AIMS 
or by GOPHER access to AIMS.  Are there reasons why this should not 
be done?   It seems to me that anyone who had a pressing need for 
secrecy should simply forego the convenience of being able to order 
the clone and should be obliged to PCR the clone from some suitable 

2. the same argument can be made for the seed collections.  Is there 
any reason why all requests for a particular stock should not be 
freely available via  some form of electronic query?  

We will be pleased to hear arguments for and against this kind of 
information release.

Chris Somerville
Carnegie Institution
290 Panama Street
Stanford, CA 94305
fax 415-325-6857

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