Proteomicists who want to share their data, take heed: A team at the University of Alberta has a software tool for you. GelScape http://www.gelscape.ualberta.ca is a free, cross-platform, browser-based tool for annotating, manipulating, comparing, and storing 1-D and 2-D protein images.1 Users can run the Java-based software off servers in Edmonton or install a local copy on their individual PC, according to David Wishart, a bioinformatics professor at the University of Alberta who oversaw the project.

Most steps, from creating a molecular weight/pH gradient grid to spot identification and annotation, can be performed manually or automatically. Automated band selection involves the application of a threshold filter; automated annotation uses Web queries with protein accession numbers or peptide mass lists. And associated data, such as mass spectra, can be uploaded to the file.

GelScape also offers functions to ease gel-to-gel comparisons. The program allows users to change spot color and...

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