Science magazine's controversial decision to publish the Syngenta draft rice genome sequence without requiring the company to deposit its data in a public database is getting less than rave reviews from scientists who need to use the genome map in their work. Over the objections of leading scientists who warn that scientific publishing principles have been sacrificed to commercial gain, Science allowed the agrochemical giant based in Basel, Switzerland, to maintain control of its data when it unveiled its draft blueprint of the japonica strain of rice in the journal's April 5 edition.1

Syngenta declined to deposit its data in GenBank, the open public storehouse of genetic material. A Chinese-led team of academics published a blueprint of the indica strain of rice in the same issue, and that map will be available on Genbank.2 "It's a fundamental principle of scientific publication that you provide the data and that...

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