Quick New Way to Deposit Plasmids: The Deposit Spreadsheet

By Tyler Ford

We've been updating our plasmid validation processes to make it easier for you to find what you need in the repository, but we're also making it easier than ever to deposit with Addgene. Our plasmid deposit process can be broken down into three simple steps:

  1. Send Plasmid Information to Addgene
  2. Materials Transfer Agreement approval (MTA)
  3. Send Plasmids to Addgene and Quality Control 

Steps 2 and 3 are usually very easy - our tech transfer team will communicate with your university directly to make sure the MTA is taken care of and, once we have all of your plasmid data, we’ll send you prepaid shipping materials (i.e. a deposit kit) with instructions on how to send liquid DNA or bacterial streaks of your plasmid back to us. Our scientists will contact you if any issues arise during the QC process. As the depositing scientist, you will have the most involvement with step 1 and, while data entry can be a chore, we’ve made it easier than ever to send us your plasmid information with the Deposit Spreadsheet.

Download the Deposit Spreadsheet

The data entry process

Addgene Deposit OptionsOn the Addgene home page, if you scroll over the “Deposit Plasmids” tab at the top of the page and click “Start Deposit,” you’ll see that you have three options for data entry (see image on the right). The first two options will bring you to our online data entry process. A thorough guide to this process can be found here.

The third option - the Deposit Spreadsheet - is relatively new but is gaining popularity and for good reason. If you’re depositing 15 or more plasmids, this is the quickest option. Simply download the spreadsheet and each plasmid in your deposit gets one row where you’ll input all necessary plasmid information as outlined by the column headers (required columns are shown in red in the spreadshet and described in the table below). Some cells have drop-down options for you to choose from while others need to be filled with short answer text. You can also directly paste sequence data into the appropriate full and partial sequence cells.

Filling out and sending the deposit spreadsheet

The Deposit Spreadsheet

The spreadsheet makes it very easy to enter information for a group of plasmids with the same backbone - you just need to copy and paste any repeated information into the appropriate rows.

If you ever have a question about what should go into a cell, hover over the cell and instructions will pop up. If you plan on submitting more than 50 plasmids or have additional questions, please contact help@addgene.org.

When you’re finished filling out the spreadsheet, save it in the format:


Replace labname with the name of your PI and send the spreadsheet to deposit@addgene.org  with any associated plasmid maps and sequence files in any format as well as your preferred shipping address. From there, we’ll use the information in the spreadsheet to generate plasmid pages that we’ll send you for review. We’ll also mail you a deposit kit you can use to send the physical plasmids back to us.

We hope the deposit spreadsheet will greatly expedite your data entry process and make it easier than ever to share your plasmids with the scientific community.

Column Title Description
Plasmid Name

The name of the plasmid as it appears in its publication or as it is commonly known in your lab

Plasmid Type

Choose from: Encodes one insert, encodes gRNA/shRNA, or empty backbone


Answer “What does this plasmid do?” in <200 characters

Species of Gene or Insert

Choose from H. sapiens (human), M. musculus (mouse), R. norvegicus (rat), G. gallus (chicken), B. taurus (bovine), X. laevis (frog), D. rerio (zebrafish), D. melanogaster (fly), C. elegans (nematode), S. cerevisiae (budding yeast), S. pombe (fission yeast), A. thaliana (mustard weed), synthetic, or other. If other, the species can be indicated in a separate column.

Relevant Mutations

Enter any mutations in the gene/insert. If WT, leave this empty.

Primary Vector Type

Choose from mammalian expression, bacterial expression, lentiviral, retroviral, AAV, RNAi, luciferase, cre/lox, yeast expression, worm expression, plant expression, mouse targeting, CRISPR, TALEN, synthetic biology, unspecified, or other

Cloning Method

Choose from restriction enzyme, TOPO cloning, Gateway cloning, ligation independent cloning, Gibson cloning, or unknown

Bacterial Resistance

Enter bacterial antibiotic resistance encoded in the plasmid. Choose from: ampicillin, kanamycin, chloramphenicol, tetracycline, spectinomycin, hygromycin, bleocin (zeocin), gentamycin, streptomycin, nourseothricin (clonNat), combinations of the above, or other

High or Low Copy

Choose from high or low copy. Choose “high copy” if a sufficient quantity of DNA is produced from a miniprep and “low copy” if special growth conditions are required or the plasmid is difficult to grow.

Growth Temp

Choose from 30C, 37C, or room temp.

Growth Strain

Choose the strain addgene should use to distribute this plasmid. Choose from: DH5alpha, NEB Stable, ccdB Survival, or other


If the plasmid will produce anything dangerous or toxic to humans in bacteria, select “yes” in the drop-down and contact Addgene

Patents or Licenses

If there are any patents or licences that could prohibit Addgene from distributing the plasmid, select “yes” from the drop-down and contact Addgene. 


Additional Resources on the Addgene Blog

Resources on Addgene.org

Topics: Addgene News, Using Addgene's Website

Leave a Comment

Sharing science just got easier... Subscribe to our blog