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mission statement that these culture collections and these biological and microbial commons will grow.

To wrap up, here are some things to consider as we develop a microbial research commons. First, in certain cases, the mere characterization of a microbe can create immediate commercial potential for the products. Consider H1N1. Sequencing and identifying these epitopes and picking them out is part of their fundamental characterization because you do not know what you have unless that is done. However, once one identifies the changes that have taken place, the information is immediately of value..

Second, microbes and microbial connections should meet certain non-commercial qualifications for the entry into this microbial commons. The timing is important, however. Discoveries and advances in scientific research will regularly move the line on what is eligible for these liability rules because as you learn more about what is commercially important and what is not important, the point where that liability rule should be applied will change.

In conclusion, the commercial use of microbial cultures is very difficult to define because the value changes over time and is subjective to begin with at the time of their appraisal. Different people may look at the same thing in a different way and value it differently. So a multifaceted system may be required to form a microbial commons that will enable broad and effective access to data and to biological materials. The culture collections will have to continue to lead with MTA agreements that will work as desired in the core of these microbial commons.

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