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New York Stem Cell Foundation, Harvard Catalyst's Eagle-I to Create Open Access Stem Cell Database

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – The New York Stem Cell Foundation Research Institute has teamed with the open source eagle-I Network to create a database of iPS cell lines and related information for use in stem cell research projects, NYSCF said this week.

The Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell database will be a searchable, web-based resource that will be publicly available to investigators seeking to find iPS information, to collaborate with other investigators, and to avoid duplicating work that has already been done. NYSCF said this will be the first iPS cell database that is easily searchable and open to researchers, and that the lack of such a resource has been "a major obstacle to the implementation of iPS technology."

Under the partnership, NYSCF will work with eagle-I, an open access discovery platform funded by Harvard Catalyst (The Harvard Clinical and Translational Science Center), to establish a repository of information on a large number of iPS cells. Eagle-I will display this information as linked open data.

NYSCF uses its Global Stem Cell Array technology, an automated high-throughput tool for producing and differentiating cells, to derive hundreds of stem cell lines from skin samples of patients with a range of diseases. The new database will enable researchers to search through these iPS cell lines under several categories — by disease, how the cells were reprogrammed, and patient age at the time the sample was collected.

Future versions of the database will include genomic and other clinical and cellular phenotype data, and it will be possible for scientists to order lines directly through the website, NYSCF said.

"It is important to have open access to available resources, and this collaboration with eagle-i is a prime example of interdisciplinary teams working together to provide this for the scientific community," NYSCF CEO Susan Solomon said in a statement.

The partners plan to present the alpha version of the database this month at the International Society for Stem Cell Research conference in Vancouver, British Columbia.

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