GO Citation Policy

Cite GO

To reference the Gene Ontology project and the foundational thought process that went into its birth, please cite:

  • Ashburner et al. Gene ontology: tool for the unification of biology (2000) Nat Genet 25(1):25-9. Online at Nature Genetics.

Also, please cite the use our resources as:

  • The Gene Ontology Consortium. Gene Ontology Consortium: going forward. (2015) Nucl Acids Res 43 Database issue D1049–D1056. Online at Nucleic Acids Research.

GO Data

If you wish to cite data provided by the Gene Ontology project, either from AmiGO or the files downloaded from the GO website, please state the release date and/or version number of the data. Both annotation and ontology data may change over time, and to reproduce the results of an analysis, it is important that the same initial GO data is used.

Ontology files

Metadata is stored at the top of the ontology file; please state the date of the file and the CVS revision number.

Gene Association files

Please cite the GOC validation date and the CVS revision number, both of which can be found in the first few lines of a gene association file.


Release information can be found in the instance_data table in the database. Please state both the release date and the release type.

Data from AmiGO

The database release can be found in the page footer on the right-hand side. To cite the annotations of individual database groups please see the GO publications list.

GO Consortium Tools


To cite AmiGO, the GO Consortium's annotation and ontology toolkit, please use the following:

Carbon S, Ireland A, Mungall CJ, Shu S, Marshall B, Lewis S, AmiGO Hub, Web Presence Working Group. AmiGO: online access to ontology and annotation data. Bioinformatics. Jan 2009;25(2):288-9. [abstract | full text]


If you reference the ontology editing tool OBO-Edit, please cite this paper: Day-Richter J, Harris MA, Haendel M, Gene Ontology OBO-Edit Working Group, Lewis S. OBO-Edit--an ontology editor for biologists. Bioinformatics. Aug 2007;23(16):2198-200. [abstract | full text]


Both the Gene Ontology website and AmiGO are compatible with Zotero, the Firefox extension for collecting, managing, citing, and sharing research sources. Please contact the GO helpdesk if you would like to request support for an alternative reference collection system.

If you intend to use the logo on your website, please include a link to the GO home page, http://geneontology.org. Please contact the GO Helpdesk if you need a larger or higher resolution version. The logo is subject to our use and license.

The GO logo is available in a number of sizes. Do not hotlink images--download them to reuse.

Website Disclaimer

All information on this website is copyright © 1999– Gene Ontology Consortium. Permission to use the information contained in this database was given by the researchers and institutes who contributed or published the information. Users of the database are solely responsible for compliance with any copyright restrictions, including those applying to the author abstracts. Documents from this server are provided "AS-IS" without any warranty, expressed or implied.