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A EUROPEAN NETWORK OF MICROBIAL CULTURE COLLECTION DATABANKS INTEGRATED CATALOGUE

Objective

CATALOGUE INFORMATION AND STRAIN DATA OF THE MAJOR EC CULTURE COLLECTIONS WILL BE AVAILABLE ON - LINE FOR RESEARCH WORKERS, INDUSTRIALISTS AND OTHER USERS.

ULTIMATELY, THE PROJECT WILL LEAD TO A GREATER INTEGRATION OF EC CULTURE COLLECTIONS AND TO THEIR INCREASED COMPETITIVITY.
A shared and integrated databank for microorganisms was developed, which would be accessible through user friendly menus. The primary approaches consisted of agreeing on hardware and software that could be matched and developing a format that would allow storage of all kinds of data. Information stored in the central database is tagged with the name of the original collection(s) which provided it and, when complete, the databank will contain over 100 000 strains of microorganisms.

The MINE project was started to meet society's increasing need for up to date, rapidly accessible and authoratative information on microorganisms kept in culture collections. This need is particularly manifest for biotechnology. In this light, the European Economic Community (EEC) activated collections in Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom (UK), to start a common information network, which has now been extended to collections in France, Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain.

The major result of this project is that agreement has been reached on storage of microbial data according to a common format. The information stored in important collections has now been formatted according to this system. Part of the local and national collections can be consulted online. The national collections in turn act as focal points for collections in the respective countries. The network has thus developed with many more participants than orginally stated. Integrated databases have been created for fungi and yeasts and for bacteria. Each of these databases contains catalogue and extended data from various national nodes.
REPRESENTATIVES OF CULTURE COLLECTIONS IN BELGIUM, GERMANY, THE NETHERLANDS AND THE UNITED KINGDOM WILL ESTABLISH A MICROBIAL INFORMATION NETWORK FOR EUROPE (MINE) DURING THE PERIOD 1986-1989.
THE NETWORK WILL CONSIST OF A CENTRAL DIRECTORY INTERFACED WITH REGIONALLY CO-ORDINATED DATABASES. IT IS ANTICIPATED THAT ALL PUBLIC CULTURE COLLECTIONS IN COUNTRIES PARTICIPATING IN THE MINE PROJECT WILL BE REPRESENTED BY A DATABASE CREATED BY THE CURATOR OF THE COLLECTION IN CONJUNCTION WITH TECHNICAL AND DATA ENTRY PERSONNEL AT THE REGIONAL DATABASE SITE. INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENT ON MAJOR SYSTEMS DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS WILL BE REQUIRED AS FOLLOWS :

1. COMPATIBLE HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE AT THE REGIONAL CENTRES, N.B. CMI (UNITED KINGDOM) AND CBS (NEDERLAND) OPERATE VAX HARDWARE WITH BATTELLE BASIS DBMS SOFTWARE. AGREEMENT ON REGIONAL HARDWARE/SOFTWARE POLICY WILL BE ACHIEVED BY JANUARY 1986.
2. COMPATIBLE AND INTER-CHANGEABLE DATABASE FORMATS. THE USER OF MINE WILL EXPECT STANDARDIZED DATA FORMATS THROUGHOUT ALL DATABASES AVAILABLE FOR PUBLIC ACCESS IN THE NETWORK. DATA DEFINITIONS AND FORMATS WILL BE AGREED BY APRIL 1986.
3. AGREEMENT ON INTERNATIONAL TELECOMMUNICATION STRATEGY TO BE ACHIEVED BY APRIL 1986.
4. SETTING-UP A CENTRAL DIRECTORY WILL OCCUR MID-1987.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

SERVICE DE PROGRAMMATION DE LA POLITIQUE SCIENTIFIQUE
Address
Service Du Premier Ministre Rue De La Science 8
1040 Brussels
Belgium

Participants (4)

CAB International Mycological Institute
United Kingdom
Address
Ferry Lane Kew
TW9 3AF Richmond
CBS
Netherlands
Address

Baarn
DMS
Address

Goettingen
GULBENKIAN INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE
Portugal
Address

Oeiras