Generating FAIR — Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reusable — Resources with Marchantia, a Prototype for Plant Synthetic Biology
“Classic!” That’s a veteran lab member’s response when a new PhD student recognizes that a plasmid doesn’t have the expected sequence. I have personally heard this, and I have seen it happening around me many more times. DNA constructs from other labs, or even from former members of your own lab, can often be poorly documented. As a result, scientists waste time and resources by having to recheck or redo previous work. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to data management challenges in a highly dynamic and resource-limited academic environment. In this environment, working practices and structural constraints have tended to prioritize innovation before documentation. Fortunately, this has been changing for some time, as data-driven biology and society have demanded well-characterized research and open science in order to make research more reproducible and more transparent.