FlyBase Project Members flybase%morgan at HARVARD.HARVARD.EDU
Tue Apr 6 13:33:00 EST 1993

                              About  FlyBase
			       6 April 1993

Release 9301 of the FlyBase database, the first release prepared by
the FlyBase consortium, is now available from the IUBio server.

FlyBase is a consortium funded by the National Center for Human Genome
Research of the U.S. National Institutes of Health to build and
distribute a computer database for Drosophila.  The consortium is Michael
Ashburner in Cambridge, England, Bill Gelbart at Harvard (who is the
Principal Investigator), Thom Kaufman and Kathy Matthews at Indiana
University in Bloomington, and John Merriam at UCLA. Carolyn Tolstoshev
of the National Center for Biotechnology Information is collaborating
with the consortium in designing the database.

The prime objective of the FlyBase consortium is to archive and make
available genetic and molecular data on Drosophila melanogaster. In
effect this database will continue the tradition of the RedBook, but in
an electronically accessible and searchable form. The latest, and last,
printed version of the Redbook, The Genome of Drosophila melanogaster by
Lindsley and Zimm, has just been published by Academic Press.  The
database will be maintained in a commercial relational database format
(Sybase) but will be distributed in several ways, including flat files,
Sybase tables, and through online network services.  We foresee that the
online services will support interactive window based interfaces on Macs,
PCs, and Unix workstations as well as simple text interfaces.  In
addition selected parts of the tables will be published periodically in
printed form as special issues of DIS (similar to the genetic map issue
last year as DIS 69).

The initial aspects of the project will proceed along three paths.  The
first will be implementation and testing of the schema, as well as
writing data input protocols;  the second will be entering the existing
information (i.e.  that now published in Lindsley and Zimm plus
Ashburner's existing genetic data base and the existing bibliographic
data), and the third will be curation, i.e. adding data from the
literature as it is published. There is, of course, some overlap between
these paths.

Preliminary and working parts of FlyBase are available at the IUBio
archive at  Note that the files previously available
on FlyBase are in the process of being reorganised into a more logical
structure and integrated with the other information in the fly directory
of IUBio.  This archive is best accessed via an Internet Gopher client.
Client software for Internet Gopher is available for most computer
systems.  Check with your local computer network experts, or use FTP
(file transfer) to obtain Gopher software from the computer at, in pub/gopher/, or from, in
util/gopher/. Most of this FlyBase working archive is also accessible via
anonymous FTP from IUBio, in the folder flybase/.  The top level
organization of this folder is:

flybase/sequences       or seqs
flybase/miscellany      or misc
flybase/documents       or docs
flybase/references      or refs
flybase/working-papers  or work
Many of the flybase directories have a file called *.doc in which the
contents of the subdirectories and their files are explained. In addition
the entire documentation has been placed in the files
flybase/docs/full.doc (in text format) or flybase/docs/ (in
Postscript format) and is available from the Documents item in the
flybase gopher menu.

These working data are organized into broad areas of genes, maps and
allied data, Drosophila stocks, researcher addresses, and documents,
references and such. Expect this preliminary organization to change.
A complete description of the current files available from FlyBase
is available in the file flybase/docs/full.doc.   As this is a 
working archive and the project is in its beginning stages, you may 
expect the organization and content to evolve over time.

We welcome your comments and suggestions for building FlyBase.

You can send comments for all FlyBase consortium members to:
  flybase at

You can send comments about the IUBio archive to:
  flybase at

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