Databases and collaboration require standards for human stem cell research

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If stem cell research is to achieve its expected potential the field needs an increase in collaboration and transparency. This may be facilitated by the creation of standards and databases that adhere to them.

Stem cell research is at an important juncture: despite significant potential for human health and several countries with key initiatives to expedite commercialization, there are gaps in capturing and exploiting the results of past and current research. Here, we propose a concerted plan that could be taken to foster a more collaborative approach and ensure that all research efforts can be leveraged across the community. The creation of a definitive centralized database repository, or at least harmonized data repositories, for stem cell groups in academia and industry, enabling secure selective sharing of data when needed, could provide the core structure that is sought globally and protect intellectual property. The development of minimum information about stem cell experiments (MIASCE) could be key to this development.

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