The Specify Software Project ( is pleased to announce the fruition of a joint software effort with the Global Genome Biodiversity Network ( to facilitate the communication of genetic sample data to the GGBN Portal from biological museums around the world. Specify is a collections database management platform used by 450+ biological museum collections worldwide.

The collaboration has brought Specify into compliance with GGBN’s data standard recommendations for describing genetic samples (frozen tissues and DNA extracts) deposited in biological museums. The joint effort also resulted in the implementation of a new network capability in the Specify 7 web platform for automating the assembly and publication of Darwin Core Archives using the GGBN Material Sample Vocabulary or any other Darwin Core extension. Darwin Core Archive files are used for communicating specimen and sample data between museums and biodiversity data aggregators.

Our work extended the Specify’s database schema by adding a ‘Material Sample’ table and new logical relationships to robustly support the use of frozen tissues and DNA extracts in biological museums to document biological diversity and for phylogenetic research. We also updated the Specify user interface to accommodate the new genetic resource data types.

This new support for tissues and molecular extracts is available now in Specify 6.6.06 and 7.3. The embedded Darwin Core Archive publisher is available in Specify 7, which is downloadable from the product’s GitHub site:

The Specify Software Project looks forward to supporting these new features for museums worldwide with genetic resource collections to promote the aggregation of tissue and extract data in the GGBN Portal:

The Specify Software Project is an open-source initiative that has provided biological museums for 30 years with robust data management platforms and research data management services for curating and processing biological specimen information. The Specify Project is grateful for the technical and financial support of the Global Genome Initiative underwriting the development of these integration capabilities.