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New genetic data policy must share benefits equitably and promote biodiversity conservation
Posted by: Prof. Dr. M. Raupp (IP Logged)
Date: March 07, 2022 10:05AM

Researchers from 17 countries have come together to offer a compromise
on a controversial topic under the United Nations (UN) Convention on
Biological Diversity in a new paper in/Nature Communications/. The
scientists published their thoughts on the ongoing UN policy discussions
about sharing of digital sequence of information to support conservation
efforts.

The scientists explain why a policy solution on digital sequence
information (DSI) is urgently needed and propose a mechanism that would
support biodiversityconservation while also better sharing the benefits
of DSI research. There is widespread agreement that urgent international
action is needed to stem the ongoing destruction of our planet's
biodiversity. Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity are
currently negotiating the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, which
will shape efforts to protect our planet for the coming decades.

Online databases contain DSI for many hundreds of thousands of organisms
and grow in size each day. These widely-used resources support
scientific reproducibility, transparency, and advancement. However,
disagreements have arisen regarding how to treat 'digital sequence
information' (DSI) in the new framework. Scientists have a long and
successful history of sharing DSI openly on the web, and this practice
is central to biodiversity research and has driven technological
advances in fields as diverse as medicine, food security, and green
energy production. DSI sharing, for example, was crucial to the rapid
development ofSARS-CoV-2tests and vaccines.

In the new publication, the authors suggest a policy mechanism that
would create a positive feedback loop to incentivize countries to
generate and share DSI on their biodiversity, while distributing
benefits from its use equitably. The authors argue that such a policy
mechanism must be ??multilateral' to be successful.

German Collection of Microorganisms and Cell Cultures GmbH: New genetic
data policy must share benefits equitably and promote biodiversity
conservation (dsmz.de)
[www.dsmz.de]



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