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A biocurator is a professional scientist who collects, annotates, and validates information that is disseminated by biological and model organism databases. The role of a biocurator encompasses quality control of primary biological research data intended for publication, extracting and organizing data from original scientific literature, and describing the data with standard annotation protocols and vocabularies that enable powerful queries and biological database inter-operability. Biocurators communicate with researchers to ensure the accuracy of curated information and to foster data exchanges with research laboratories.

Biocurators (also called scientific curators, data curators or annotators) have been recognized as the "museum catalogers of the Internet age".[1]

To annotate data, biocurators commonly employ—and take part in the creation and development of—shared biomedical ontologies: structured, controlled vocabularies that encompass many biological and medical knowledge domains. These domains include genomics and proteomics, anatomy, animal and plant development, biochemistry, metabolic pathways, taxonomic classification, and mutant phenotypes.

Biocurators enforce the consistent use of gene nomenclature guidelines and participate in the genetic nomenclature committees of various model organisms, often in collaboration with the HUGO Gene Nomenclature Committee (HGNC). They also enforce other nomenclature guidelines like those provided by the Nomenclature Committee of the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (IUBMB), one example of which is the Enzyme Commission EC number.


  1. ^ Bourne and McEntyre (2006). Biocurators: contributors to the world of science. PLoS Comput Biol 2(10):e142.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Biocurator". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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