MaizeGDB: curation and outreach go hand-in-hand
First released in 1991 with the name MaizeDB, the Maize Genetics and Genomics Database, now MaizeGDB, celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. MaizeGDB has transitioned from a focus on comprehensive curation of the literature, genetic maps and stocks to a paradigm that accommodates the recent release of a reference maize genome sequence, multiple diverse maize genomes and sequence-based gene expression data sets. The MaizeGDB Team is relatively small, and relies heavily on the research community to provide data, nomenclature standards and most importantly, to recommend future directions, priorities and strategies. Key aspects of MaizeGDB's intimate interaction with the community are the co-location of curators with maize research groups in multiple locations across the USA as well as coordination with MaizeGDB’s close partner, the Maize Genetics Cooperation—Stock Center. In this report, we describe how the MaizeGDB Team currently interacts with the maize research community and our plan for future interactions that will support updates to the functional and structural annotation of the B73 reference genome.