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Old 05-18-2011, 05:47 AM   #1
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Location: Oklahoma

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 408
Default Trade Secrets in Science

I've been pondering this post for a while now, and the latest censoring of info (in the Ionosphere thread in the iontorrent forum) has brought me here to ask why sequencing companies are so damn secretive about stuff. I'm not singling out any one company over another, since they all have their little bits of info they won't share.

Should only authorized users know how long you incubate the end-repair reaction? Is it really that imperative that only your customers (and sometimes not even then) know what the sequence of your adapters are?

It's not like this is top secret stuff anyway. When I wanted to know what was in all of the GA2x reagents I went and found the illumina patents and then proceeded to tell the reps when they stopped by what was in each one, after they told me it was proprietary knowledge.

Are they worried about the competition? Isn't most of the main tech patented and licensed anyway? Do they want a lock on reagents as a revenue generator? How much does something like the NEBnext kits hurt the bottom line? Here's a tip, just refuse to support libraries or runs thereof created with non-company stuff.

Isn't one of the most basic tenants of science communication within the community? Do we not have, in every article, a methods section delineating how every process presented was preformed?

Sigh, I don't know. Maybe it's just the coffee talking. Feel free to agree or disagree, but I'm a little annoyed with it.
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