Boost Box Schedule
When: Held 2nd Tuesday of each month / Noon - 1 pm / Archives
- MAR now offers 1 MLA Continuing Education (CE) credit per Boost Box session
- Details are provided at the end of each session
- InfoBoosters: Connecting Texts with Databases / December 9, 2014
Presenter: Ansuman Chattopadhyay, Head, Molecular Biology Information Service / Health Sciences Library System, University of Pittsburgh
Description: As life sciences research has become more interdisciplinary, the scientific papers we read increasingly include genes, proteins, methodologies, and biological concepts outside of our domain of expertise. In order to thoroughly comprehend such articles, it is necessary to learn more about these lesser-known terms.
Information is readily available in various molecular databases, but the current journal article reading formats (PDF and Web-based) do not provide links to access the databases directly from the article pages. We have developed Infoboosters--an easy-to-install browser widget that connects digital texts to databases and retrieves relevant information on-demand. E.g., after selecting a protein name in an article and clicking the “Infobooster for Structure" widget, a pop-up window appears displaying the protein structure from the Protein Data Bank.
The application of these tools will assist readers with revealing information not directly described in the text and potentially fostering the creation of new hypotheses. We will introduce you to Infoboosters, show you how to create your own unique Infoboosters, and cover various applications of this new tool.
The Perils & Promises of Genomic Medicine / January 13, 2015
Presenter: Carrie Iwema, Information Specialist in Molecular Biology, Molecular Biology Information Service / Health Sciences Library System, University of Pittsburgh
Description: Advances in DNA sequencing technologies have greatly reduced the cost of whole genome sequencing and created fascinating new areas of study—personal genomics and personalized medicine. Empowered by recent technological advancements, scientists now have the ability to rapidly compare genetic alphabets of groups of people who show a particular trait with those that do not. Access to your personal genome enables you to identify genetic risk factors or inheritable disease markers you are carrying and can help you and your doctor choose the appropriate medications, dosages, and healthcare strategies. It is more critical than ever to have a basic understanding of the science behind these advances, as well as the associated ethical, legal, and social issues, in order to actively participate in this exciting and rapidly changing field.