Strain Info

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= a Microbial Commons and bioportal

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"Cultured micro-organisms form a vital cornerstone of all microbial research. With more than 500 biological resource centres worldwide, it may however become a daunting task to track down an interesting strain of a given taxon (e.g. Burkholderia cenocepacia or Saccharomyces cerevisiae). Moreover, as biological research is inherently distributed in nature, with many researchers in different research institutes collecting data on the same organisms, knowledge generated on these micro-organisms also has a tendency to become spread across the information jungle. As science and technology are moving rapidly, thereby increasingly making use of the scientific merits of previous research results, instant and effortless visibility of this creative and scientific downstream information has become imperative for the realisation of successful innovation chains that take full opportunity of the exploitation of biological resources.

The bioportal ( was established to stimulate this movement towards using multi-perspective integrated information in a broadened biological and clinical context. It brings together the biological material kept at multiple biological resource centres into a single portal interface, with direct pointers to the relevant information at the collections' websites, and provides both historical traces and geographic distribution of the strains they keep in culture. In addition, this information is automatically linked to related sequences in the public domain and refers to all known scientific publications that deal with the organism. To support taxonomic depth of the information provided by the bioportal, all taxonomic names appearing in the bioportal are fully integrated with and linked out to key taxonomic information sources. Predefined workflows allow further integration of additional information sources into the bioportal, resulting for example in direct access to all organisms involved in completed or ongoing whole-genome sequencing projects. As the bioportal further unfolds itself as a helpful add-on to the microbiologists' toolbox, we hope to gather around it a growing community of users that might become active contributors to both its content and implementation." (