The International Mouse Phenotype Consortium (IMPC) is composed of several international research institutions. At each institute, mutant mice are phenotyped and the data produced is sent to a Data Coordination Center (DCC). Once the data has passed a set of Quality Control (QC) checks, the data is statistically analyzed.
Each institute has unique operating standards and must track specimen and phenotype data to allow downstream analysis. To facilitate this requirement, the DCC defined a method to uniquely identify a phenotyping effort. One key data point used for this is the Colony ID. The Colony ID is used to encapsulate phenotyping mutants from a single allele on a background strain. The colony ID is associated to an allele/gene/background strain for display and dissemination. Each center can use a different scheme for generating the colony ID, and the colony IDs are unique across the IMPC effort.
Internally, the IMPC uses the Colony ID (among other attributes) to assemble mutant and control data points into an appropriate data set used for analysis. If the analysis registers a significant change in the mutant due to the genotype effect, the IMPC generates an association between the mutant gene and a mammalian phenotype ontology (MP) term specific to the measured parameter as defined in IMPReSS.