ARKdb arose initially from the needs of a project co-ordinated at Roslin Institute to map the pig genome. The original intention was to utilise the Jackson Laboratory’s then current mouseGBASE database design, and this was actually implemented for pigs, chickens and sheep. However, it soon became clear that the nature of genome mapping in farmed animal species differed significantly from the methods and population types employed in mouse genetics. These differences meant that the schema we had didn’t fit our data requirements and the decision was taken to develop our own database system.
Because we needed a system that would work for all of the species that we work with at Roslin, we tried to make the design as generic as possible. We hope that we have managed to strike a balance between generalisation and utility. In any case, the number of species that have adopted the ARKdb database system for their genome mapping informatics needs extends considerably beyond those initially in mind when we established the schema.
ARKdb species databases at this site