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Sharing of Data

  We will continue to make available all AfCS legacy data and datasets on the AfCS website (www.signaling-gateway.org). All new data developed under Alliance funding will be placed in the public domain via our data download web site (www.afcs.org). Datasets comprised of primary unprocessed data will be provided together with documentation and appropriate metadata to ensure that other investigators can use the AfCS-generated datasets. Consistent with NIH guidelines for "timely release and sharing" of data, full datasets will be available no later than the acceptance for publication of the main findings from the dataset. These datasets will include all data presented in the publication as well as all datasets supporting the conclusions presented in the publication. To complement the publication, the AfCS will periodically post additional datasets that are generated subsequent to the acceptance of the publication and that are deemed relevant to the conclusions of that study. These additional datasets will be available to the public following experimental verification. Once placed within the public domain, all data may be used by any party for research and/or commercial purposes.

Intellectual Property


Our plan for management of intellectual property and sharing of research resources has three goals:

  • To support the open, interactive nature of the relationship between Alliance members
  • To minimize administrative delays related to management of intellectual property and proprietary interests
  • To facilitate the rapid placement of research discoveries into the public domain

To accomplish these goals, the Participating Investigators and the Alliance Laboratories do not retain any intellectual property rights to their research discoveries that are a direct result of funding or reagents provided by the Alliance.

All those who provide reagents to the AfCS sign a simple, non-negotiable Material Transfer Agreement (MTA) that assures that (1) the provider will retain no proprietary rights in intellectual property developed through use of the reagent, (2) the reagent is provided without commercial obligation to a third party, (3) the AfCS laboratory will not distribute the reagent to any other non-AfCS third party without prior written consent, (4) the AfCS will not be responsible for reporting discoveries to the provider related to the use of the reagent, and (5) the AfCS will use the reagent solely for AfCS-funded research and will not retain any proprietary rights related to use of the reagent.

Patent protection of the posted data is not possible because of public disclosure and the obvious lack of inventorship. Once placed within the public domain, all data may be used by any party for research and/or commercial purposes. Both AfCS and non-AfCS researchers, acting outside the Alliance, may use these data as a platform to develop new discoveries, and the AfCS will not have any "reach-through" rights to such discoveries.

DNA-based reagents developed by the Alliance are being distributed in a timely manner through the American Type Culture Collection (ATCC).

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