Especially in functional genomics, the prompt availability, management and standardization of resources and data is a key factor for successful research. In order to facilitate access to genes and to support standardization of microarray production, PICME offers a unique service.

By collecting, cleaning and curating physical EST entries from various sources, various beneficial aspects are covered. First of all, collaborating institutes are exempt from the burden of managing the material, and also from distributing material to interested third parties. Furthermore, a secure long-time storage is achieved by the PICME QC measures. Once material has entered the PICME database, the valuable material is stored in several copies, under different conditions.

ESTs can be accessed either spotted on glass slides (as microarrays) in high or low density according to the customers’ choice, or as PCR fragment aliquots. IP rights will stay with the originator of the ESTs.

With the background of existing and upcoming molecular information on the plant genomes which have to be combined with a vast amount of phenotypic data, this initiative comes just in time to lever research beyond single model species and develop the potentials of chip technology and data mining for cross genome evaluation of resistance and adaptation genetics features.