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Use of sequence databases - ethics?

Thorsten Burmester burmeste at ccr.jussieu.fr
Tue Dec 10 15:59:26 EST 1996

>> I was wondering whether there is a widespread consensus among molecular
>> biologists regarding the extent to which published sequences can be
>> re-used, and published in one's own name without it becoming a case of
>> plagiarism. 
>I have been in exactly this position a couple of times, with
>sequence analyses of both poty- and geminiviruses - and I took the
>view that if a sequence is published in a database (which with plant
>viruses usually means it has been published in print as well), then
>it is "public domain" in that I can use it as long as I correctly
>cite who sequenced it.  I think this constitutes "fair use" as far as 
>databased sequences are concerned.

Dear all,

And what is the status of a _patented_ sequence in GenBank etc.? May one
use it e.g. for phylogenetic analysis as if they were "public domain"?

Thorsten Burmester              Tel: (+33) 1 44 27 40 94
Institut Jacques-Monod          Fax: (+33) 1 44 27 52 65             
CNRS et Universite Paris 7    email: burmeste at ccr.jussieu.fr (preferred)
2 place Jussieu                   or tburmest at infobiogen.fr
F-75251 Paris CEDEX 05, France

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