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10 years of the Aspergillus Website


									10 years of the

      Evolution and revolution
Original summary of purpose

 “This site is designed to provide information
 on pathogenic Aspergilli for clinicians and
 scientific researchers. The site includes DNA
 sequence data, a comprehensive bibliographic
 database, laboratory protocols, treatment
 information and discussion groups.”
Evolution: 10 years ago…
Evolution: 5 years ago…
Evolution: 4 years ago…
Evolved: Now…
Evolution: Statistics
• 1999
  – Nearly 4000 members
  – 500 pages per day
  – 71 countries reached
• 2008
  – 35 000 members
  – 12 000 pages per day
Latest figures
• 14 000 page requests per day (up to 5 million
  per year)
• 26 000 distinct IP addresses per month
• 110-120 countries reached each month
  (2/3rds of the total number of countries in the
• 1975 sites link to website (20th Feb 2008)
Evolution: Sections

     Diagnosis: 3800ppm Treatment: 2400ppm

     Research: 500ppm Articles:25 000ppm
     Conferences: 4600ppm

     33 000 images per month

     6700 ppm
Revolution: new sections and services

     37 000 pages downloaded per month

     12 000 pages downloaded per month

     A search is carried out every 2-3 seconds somewhere in the world

     21 000 pages downloaded per month

     23 000 pages downloaded per month
       The Aspergillus Search Engine

•68 000 readable files
 indexed by Google
(html, php, pdf, ppt, doc)
•17 requests per minute
•Used twice as much in UK
night-time (USA/Asia users)
Search terms – WWW Google
Nova Plantarum Genera
           Site structure
•40 indexed sections
•5 forums for questions & answers
•Patients support group (very active with
539 members and 10-20 messages per day
•Technical support group (73 members)
•Active collaboration with the Aspergillus
Trust (UK patients only)
A. fumigatus sequence release
  Doing well so
far – what next?
          The Way Forward
•Quality and ‘added value’ of content
•Better internal searching – better internal
•Better external indexing (Domain names,
specific pages aimed at improving ranking)
          The Way forward
•Better public relations
•Improve existing sections for existing
audiences – Patients (50% of audience)
•More sections designed to attract new
audiences (Industrial applications)
Present sponsors
   •Pfizer Inc
   •The CGD Research Trust
   •The Moulton Trust

Past sponsors
   •Merck & Co Inc.
   •AB Biodisk
 Patients website – the beginning

•Discussion group – simple email based group
 allowing group ‘conversations’
    •Around 100 members
    •Demanding on moderator & editors
•Bulletin board – 2 subjects (allergic & invasive)
 Questions & answers
    •Not popular – 1 or 2 questions a week
    •No group support
Bulletin Board
• For me
  – Repetitive – tending to answer the same or similar
  – Text only
• For patient
  – Not easy to find (have to find website, then the right
  – Not easy to understand
  – Difficult to find information you want
• Patients website
  – Contains fact sheets on all repeated information, links to
    useful websites
  – Open to all, no membership required
  – Data gathering to profile users
  – Aspergillus Support Group
What is Aspergillus?
     Non-English page requests

Top 6 downloaded ‘What is aspergillus’ in January 2008

Essential Information
Aspergillus Support Group
   Success of Patient Sections

•37 000 website pages requested
•543 members of the support group
•10-20 messages per day

•Far less time spent answering repetitive
questions (Patient moderators)
•‘Body’ of information supported by Patients
•The Aspergillus Trust
                 Public Relations

Patients section is a good potential source of stories for
journalists, as well as a good source of ideas for story lines
and pictures that will be of interest to wider audiences.

   •Patient stories – successful treatment
   •Flood damage – better ways to clean up
   •Building work – ways to protect the vulnerable
   •Composting – sensitivity of siteing

Increased public interest = increased viewing figures
         The Aspergillus Trust
•Rose out of the Aspergillus Support Group
•Led by UK based people suffering from Aspergillus
•Originally envisaged (by me) to be a group offering
the patients perspective on what information is given
to patients during their illnesses, how to improve that
information and even how to improve the treatments
offered (ABPA/itraconazole)
•A think tank to suggest new areas to cover
•But they became so much more…
Trust website

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