The Maize Genome Database or MaizeDB is curated as a Sybase database at the University of Missouri, Columbia, MO. Information content is dynamic and updated daily. Accesses to the database at the Missouri location have approximately doubled over the past year from 20,000 to 40,000/month, after subtracting an approximately equal number of accesses from commercial indexing services and local accesses. Over 3.5 megabytes of information have been transferred over the Web in the past 2 years to some 38,000 different machines around the world. These accesses do not include records curated in other databases, such as sequence (GenBank), other genomes (yeast) and germplasm (GRIN), for which specific records may be seamlessly retrieved by users from within MaizeDB. Currently, 3,322 records in MaizeDB have 25,396 links to any of 18 external databases. SwissProt (Switzerland), Entrez(GenBank) and GRIN use links, as curated by the MaizeDB staff, to connect back to MaizeDB information. MaizeDB continues to provide four distinct front-ends for accessing the data electronically: gopher, World Wide Web, APT and ACEDB; a guest login account provides telnet access to all formats, in the event users do not have their own WWW or gopher browsing software. June 1996 records include 327 genetic maps, which form the basis for the integrated chromosome maps ; 7331 mapped loci, including 400 quantitative trait loci; 4295map data entries, both recombination and map score data; 4658 probes; 2169 genetic/cytogenetic stocks; 20828 locus variations; allozyme typing for 21 loci and 437 elite stocks; 4662 stock pedigrees; 8276 selected bibliographic references, indexed to other database objects including agronomic traits; 3280 researchers with address entries.

New Data
Total new records increased by 18% to over 118,000. Special WWW files of new data are maintained on the What's New page. Major new additions are high-lighted on the top line of our home page as they occur. Many of the files will also be listed and updated on the 'Of Interest to Maize Cooperators" page. Major new data include:

1. Images : 2924 images of 1685 mutants in the Neuffer collection; hundreds of traits and pathogens/pests. We thank Gerry Neuffer, Lou Butler and Beth Bennett for their efforts with mutant images and CIMMYT for making their slides of traits, pathogens and pests available. These images will not be published in the 1996 edition of Mutants of Maize. Look for enhanced annotation of the images over the upcoming year. According to one commercial source, Infoseek, http://guide.infoseek.com/, MaizeDB is an "Amazing archive of images of mutant ears of corn".

2. SSR's : 177 PCR primer mapping-pairs to detect simple sequence repeats (SSR). We are grateful for the careful compilations provided pre-publication by Lynn Senior (ARS, NC State), Emily Chin (Pioneer Hi-Bred), Julie Vogel (DuPont), and Mark Walton (Linkage Genetics). Information includes the primer sequences, the loci probed, with bin locations, and where provided, gel patterns, raw mapscores and annealing conditions. SSR map data are available for several previously unlocated genes, including fdx1, gln4, gst1, mtl1, nac1, ohp2, ole2, tlk1.

3. 1996 Maize Genetics Conference Abstracts are part of the reference additions in the database, thanks to electronic submissions by the cooperators and especially, Paul Chomet, Bill Sheridan and Brenda Schilling.

4. Genetic stocks: updated and new descriptions of 2169 seed stocks available from the Maize Genetics Cooperation Stock Center are entered into MaizeDB directly by Marty Sachs, who also facilitates links from GRIN to MaizeDB genetic stocks.

5. Molecular markers are largely updated with thanks to Theresa Musket for preparation of electronic files with information about 3278 molecular probes available from the UMC RFLP laboratory.

6. Continuing areas of update include (1) selected new references with indexing to MaizeDB objects; (2) record-to-record pointers to information in external databases that include SwissProt, GenBank, dbEST, Enzyme and GRIN; (3) raw map data, current and retrospective; (4) QTL experiments; (5) addresses of maize researchers.

New Connections
The Plant Genome Database (PGD), http://probe.nalusda.gov:8300/ , now links back to the up-to-the-minute record, typos-and-all, at the Missouri server; use the "[MaizeDB-Sybase]" button at the top of each PGD record. PGD permits full-text queries across all plant species and provides a snapshot of the MaizeDB data as last extracted at Missouri into ACEDB format.

Entrez, a frontend of GenBank, http://www3.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/Entrez/, now links to PGD(AGIS) records, based on the links established at Missouri.

The e-mail address for the database folks is db_request@teosinte.agron.missouri.edu. In general, technical matters are handled by Denis Hancock; all else by any of a small group that includes: Ed Coe, Pat Byrne, Georgia Davis, Mary Polacco, and Marty Sachs.

Mary Polacco

Please Note: Notes submitted to the Maize Genetics Cooperation Newsletter may be cited only with consent of the authors

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