Biocuration Focus Group

About the Biocuration Focus Group

The process of biocuration, performed by expert biologists, is the life-blood of knowledgebases. The work of biocurators involves identifying and reading the full text of key papers, then extracting relevant information with supporting evidence.

A growing corpus of open-access full-text articles provides new opportunities to enhance article triage and browsing systems; at the same time, many text mining workflows are sufficiently mature to support curation activities.

ELIXIR has structures in place to support organisations and developers providing biological data and data-centric tools at scale and has been very successful in this endeavour. Historically, these services have been led by major bioinformatics services. In the 2019-2023 ELIXIR Scientific Programme, there is an increased focus on communities of researchers and the nurturing of smaller-scale grass-roots sources of curated data to support specialist or emerging ares of interest.

The Biocuration Focus Group is establised to provide the supporting mechanism driving this scientific theme in the 2019-2023 Scientific Programme, and widen the applicability of ELIXIR activities to data resource developers/operators across the Nodes and their constituent institutions.


This Focus Group will act as a connection point for all of the ELIXIR members and their close collaborators who have biocuration as their main area of responsibility, as an important part of their research activities, or as an application area for tools they are developing. It will:

  • Connect ELIXIR biocuration experts and users to the International Society for Biocuration (ISB) and coordinate ELIXIR activites with the goals and event of the ISB.
  • Connect biocurators to the activities of the ELIXIR, including the Technical Platforms and the Communities, and act as a user group to shape requirements and evaluate relevant technologies.
  • Track the Data Manager Expert Network being developed under ELIXIR-CONVERGE and contribute advice on the relation of individual biocurators to ELIXIR under the current models and in future programme.


Outputs are likely to include:

  • ELIXIR contributions to ISB events and strategy.
  • Gap analysis, technical requirements and end user reviews of resources for biocurators.
  • Recommendations on how ELIXIR can support the careers and recognition of researchers with biocuration as part of their role.
  • Contribution to future ELIXIR strategy and possible roles for individual biocurators and the biocuration community.

Steering committee

Federica Quaglia (ELIXIR-IT) - short bio - Chair
Valerie Wood (ELIXIR-UK) - short bio
Ulrike Wittig (ELIXIR-DE) - short bio
Sandra Orchard (EMBL-EBI) - short bio
Melissa Harrison (EMBL - EBI) - short bio
Luana Licata (ELIXIR-IT) - short bio

ELIXIR Hub Coordination Contact

Gavin Farrell (gavin.farrell [at]







Mailing list

biocuration [at]