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Journal Article

Aligning Standards Communities for Omics Biodiversity Data: Sustainable Darwin Core-MIxS Interoperability


Meyer,  Raissa
Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Max Planck Society;

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Meyer, R., Appeltans, W., Duncan, W. D., Dimitrova, M., Gan, Y.-M., Jeppesen, T. S., et al. (2023). Aligning Standards Communities for Omics Biodiversity Data: Sustainable Darwin Core-MIxS Interoperability. BIODIVERSITY DATA JOURNAL, 11: e112420. doi:10.3897/BDJ.11.e112420.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000E-5EA8-C
The standardization of data, encompassing both primary and contextual information (metadata), plays a pivotal role in facilitating data (re-)use, integration, and knowledge generation. However, the biodiversity and omics communities, converging on omics biodiversity data, have historically developed and adopted their own distinct standards, hindering effective (meta)data integration and collaboration. In response to this challenge, the Task Group (TG) for Sustainable DwC-MIxS Interoperability was established. Convening experts from the Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG) and the Genomic Standards Consortium (GSC) alongside external stakeholders, the TG aimed to promote sustainable interoperability between the Minimum Information about any (x) Sequence (MIxS) and Darwin Core (DwC) specifications. To achieve this goal, the TG utilized the Simple Standard for Sharing Ontology Mappings (SSSOM) to create a comprehensive mapping of DwC keys to MIxS keys. This mapping, combined with the development of the MIxS-DwC extension, enables the incorporation of MIxS core terms into DwC-compliant metadata records, facilitating seamless data exchange between MIxS and DwC user communities. Through the implementation of this translation layer, data produced in either MIxS-or DwCcompliant formats can now be efficiently brokered, breaking down silos and fostering closer collaboration between the biodiversity and omics communities. To ensure its sustainability and lasting impact, TDWG and GSC have both signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on creating a continuous model to synchronize their standards. These achievements mark a significant step forward in enhancing data sharing and utilization across domains, thereby unlocking new opportunities for scientific discovery and advancement.