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SWISS-PROT funding crisis - Developments of December 1996

Geneva, December 13, 1996.

As you probably know, the last six months have been a very hectic period for us as we encountered various funding difficulties. We are now in the last stage of ensuring the financial stability of SWISS-PROT and associated databases for the next 3 years (until Dec. 1999) and discussions are going to start regarding the long term support (starting in 2000) of BioInformatics in Switzerland. A large part of the support for the next three years is going to come from the Swiss National Science Fundation (FNRS), the Federal Office for Education and Sciences (OFES) and the Swiss Polytechnical schools. We are grateful to these organisations for their support, without them we would have not been able to continue to maintain and develop SWISS-PROT in thr public domain.

Furthermore, we are in the middle of moving the ExPASy server to a new, faster machine (a Sun Ultra Enterprise) [do not worry, current URLs for the server and the various databases and services will not change !!]

We will announce here as well as by email to all those which have sent us messages of support, the exact details of these developments. In the meantime I want to reiterate my thanks to all of our users, to the state of Geneva for their financial support in the last 6 months, to the Swiss Federal Office for Science for actively helping to find solutions to our problems and to that of the Swiss node of EMBnet.

On the behalf of the SWISS-PROT staff,

Amos Bairoch