Archive by category | Data availability

Data sharing discussed at Nature and Nature Network

Sharing data is good. But sharing your own data? That can get complicated. As two research communities who held meetings on this question in Rome and in Toronto in May report their proposals to promote data sharing in biology, a special issue of Nature (10 September 2009) examines the cultural and technical hurdles that can get in the way of good intentions. Some of the authors of these proposals are participating in two online forums (Rome and Toronto) at Nature Network – so please accept our invitation to visit and have your say on these questions.  Read more

Nature Cell Biology on research integrity and accessibility

The cell biology literature contains manipulated data that distort findings, usually in an attempt to ‘beautify’ and, rarely, to commit fraud, states the September Editorial in Nature Cell Biology (11, 1045; 2009, free to read online) According to the Editorial, a National Academy of Sciences (NAS) report, ‘Ensuring the Integrity, Accessibility, and Stewardship of Research Data in the Digital Age’, "arrives at no hard and fast rules; the panel found that different fields have quite different requirements. In the words of panel chairs Phillip Sharp and Daniel Kleppner, “the report provides a framework for dealing with the challenges to the  … Read more

Metagenomics analysed at Nature Methods

Metagenomics sprang from advances in sequencing technology, and continued improvements are providing data in quantities unimaginable a few years ago. But without concerted efforts, the amount of data will quickly outpace the ability of scientists to analyse it. The September Editorial of Nature Methods (6, 623; 2009), ‘Metagenomics versus Moore’s law’ draws attention to some articles in the same issue of the journal that illustrate some of the dangers and problems, as well as the solutions that are being sought.  Read more

No restrictions on tissue distribution

The distribution of human cell lines used in research should not be hindered by restrictions from donors, states an Editorial in Nature last week (460, 933; 2009 ; free to access online). The occasion of the Editorial is a Corrigendum relating to a paper published in the journal last year (‘Generation of pluripotent stem cells from adult human testis’ by  … Read more

Nature Biotechnology calls for better data-sharing practices

A universal tagging system that links data sets with the author(s) that generated them is essential to promote data sharing within the proteomics and other research communities. The July Editorial in Nature Biotechology (27, 579; 2009) reports the results of the journal’s survey of author compliance in depositing proteomics and molecular-interaction data underlying the papers they published. The editors found that even authors who are proponents of data deposition are not making data available in all of the papers they publish. Inhibitory factors include data quality and the user-unfriendliness of some databases. The Editorial concludes:  … Read more