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Archive for the ‘TOXNET and Beyond’ Category

ChemIDplus Updated

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

ChemIDplus, one of the resources available via TOXNET, has a new interface and updated functionality. ChemIDplus is a dictionary of over 400,000 chemicals with links NLM databases and other resources.

In the Advanced Search, a  new “3D” button on search results pages provides calculated three dimensional structure models for over 300,000 chemicals and 645,000 variations.  Users can adjust the rotation speed, the image type (ball and stick, space fill, wireframe), and 3D angle of viewing; dragging the image changes its orientation. Right clicking on the structure box provides other control options such as color, style, measurements, and computation.

To see the changes, visit ChemIDplus, or read more about the changes in the NLM Technical Bulletin.

To learn more about ChemIDplus, watch for our updated tutorials on our Tutorials & Recordings page.

New TOXNET Class

Friday, July 18th, 2014

Discovering_TOXNET

New class, new format!

Discovering TOXNET is our new class that allows you to customize your learning experience of TOXNET and other NLM environmental health databases. The class is asynchronous and organized into 13 modules. All but one of the modules are optional, so you complete the segments that are of most interest to you. Each module consists of guided interactive online tutorials and/or tutorial videos as well as discovery exercises. Instructors will be available to answer questions and provide assistance throughout the course. The class runs over the course of 4 weeks and at the end of the course, you will receive MLA continuing education credit based on the number of modules you completed, up to 12 MLA CE hours. 

The modules are:

  1. Introduction to TOXNET: 0.5 hour (Required)
  2. TOXLINE: 1.0 hour
  3. ChemIDplus: 2.0 hours
  4. Integrated Risk Information System & Risk Assessment: 1.0 hour
  5. Hazardous Substances Databank: 1.5 hours
  6. Toxic Release Inventory: 1.0 hour
  7. TOXMAP: 1.5 hours
  8. Household Products Database: 0.5 hour
  9. LactMed: 0.5 hour
  10. Haz-Map: 0.5 hour
  11. WISER & CHEMM: 1.0 hour
  12. REMM: 0.5 hour
  13. LiverTox: 0.5 hour

Register at http://nnlm.gov/ntcc/classes/schedule.html 

For questions or to let us know what you think of the new format, contact us at ntc@utah.edu

 

What I’m Reading

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

Man with laptop drinking coffee in a cafe

It can be such a challenge to keep up with the literature, blogs, books, and other sources that help you to stay updated in your field. Here’s a short list of what I’ve been reading lately that you might also be interested in.

  • The Accidental Instructional Designer: Learning Design for the Digital Age, by Cammy Bean. I attended a presentation by Ms. Bean at the American Society for Training & Development TechKnowledge conference in January. (You can read a post about her presentation here). Her new book has great tips for both the novice and experienced designer of instruction, with a focus on e-learning. You can read a chapter of the book for free here.
  • Database Resources of the National Center for Biotechnology Information . This 2014 article by the NCBI Resource Coordinators provides updates on the suite of NCBI resources as well as a bit of background on the resources.
  • Fatal Victorian Fashion and the Allure of the Poison Garment,” by Allison Meier on the Hyperallergic blog. Interesting read on the dangers of style for both the wearers and the makers. And you can learn more about the toxicity of substances mentioned in the new TOXNET interface.
  • Getting Started with File Naming Conventions,” by Jake Carlson on the e-Science Community Blog. Very useful advice for someone like me who has been guilty of using “final” in a file name.

What interesting things are you reading lately? Let me know on Twitter @nnlmntc or Facebook!

TOXMAP: How to Search for a Chemical

Monday, June 9th, 2014

Watch the video to learn how to search the new TOXMAP interface for a chemical.

TOXMAP Interface Updated: Watch the Video

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

Earth Day is Coming…April 22, 2014

Monday, March 10th, 2014

The first Earth Day was in 1970, the same year that the EPA was signed into law. Of the many databases offered by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM) TOXNET®  is a suite of databases that cover toxicology data, hazardous chemicals, environmental health, and toxic releases.

What is TOXNET? A Little History.

The Toxicology Information Program (TIP) was established in 1967 at the National Library of Medicine (NLM) in response to recommendations made in the 1966 report “Handling of Toxicological Information,” prepared by the President’s Science Advisory Committee.

The objectives of TIP were to: (1) create automated toxicology data banks, and (2) provide toxicology information and data services. In the mid-1990′s, the mission of TIP was expanded to include environmental health and thus the Toxicology and Environmental Health Information Program (TEHIP) evolved.

TEHIP is responsible for the Toxicology Data Network (TOXNET), an integrated system of toxicology and environmental health databases that are available free of charge on the web.

The National Library of Medicine Training Center (NTC) offers online training about the TOXNET databases called Discovering TOXNET. One of the databases included in TOXNET is the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI). TRI data is collected by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

What is TRI?

TRI tracks the management of certain toxic chemicals that may pose a threat to human health and the environment. TRI includes data about chemical releases, waste transfers, recycling and pollution prevention. TRI includes information that can help you learn about toxic chemical releases from certain facilities in your neighborhood.

Why was TRI created?

In December of 1984 there was a massive toxic gas release in Bhopal, India from a U.S. owned company. Thousands of people died on that day and thousands of deaths (approximately 8000) have been attributed to that accident. Later that same year, in West Virginia, there was another chemical release. While the W.V. release was on a much smaller scale than the release in India, people across the U.S. began to ask questions about preparedness and information about toxic releases from facilities in their towns.

How can TRI Help Communities?

  • TRI can identify which chemicals are released by TRI facilities
  • TRI can track increases and reductions of toxic chemical releases

What is a TRI Facility?

TRI facilities include manufacturing, coal/oil electricity generation, mining facilities, hazardous waste management and federal facilities. Companies in these industries must report their use of a TRI chemical if they manufacture, process or use more than a certain amount of a TRI chemical per year.

What is a TRI Chemical?

In general chemicals covered by the TRI Program are those that cause one or more of the following:

  • Cancer or other chronic human health effects
  • Significant adverse acute human health effects
  • Significant adverse environmental effects

The TRI Program currently covers 682 chemicals and chemical categories.

Read more about TRI at: http://www2.epa.gov/toxics-release-inventory-tri-program

Haz-Map Updated

Friday, February 14th, 2014

NLM has updated Haz-Map with 481 new agents, including 23 agents causing occupational asthma. Fifteen new hazardous job tasks linked to jobs and industries were also added in this update.  Haz-Map now covers over 9170 chemical and biological agents and 241 occupational diseases. http://hazmap.nlm.nih.gov/

Haz-Map is an occupational health database designed for health and safety professionals and for consumers seeking information about the health effects of exposure to chemicals and biologicals at work.  Haz-Map links jobs and hazardous tasks with occupational diseases and their symptoms. It currently covers over 5997 chemical and biological agents and 235 occupational diseases.

More information can be found at http://www.nlm.nih.gov/pubs/factsheets/hazmap.html

Join the NLM Training Center for a New Online TOXNET Class

Friday, September 20th, 2013

Would you like to learn more about the environmental health resources available from the National Library of Medicine?  Join the NLM Training Center (NTC) from October 21 – November 5, 2013 for Module 1 a new online class, called “Discovering TOXNET:  From Paracelsus to Nanotechnology.”

TOXNET is a web-based system of databases covering hazardous chemicals, environmental health, and toxic releases. Module 1 covers three TOXNET databases (ChemIDPlus, LactMed, and TOXLINE) as well as three emergency response tools (CHEMM, REMM, and WISER).  Module 2 covers the risk assessment databases and will be offered at a later date.  You’ll learn about the resources through videos, guided tutorials, discovery exercises, and solving real-life reference questions.

Who should take the class?
Health sciences librarians and health sciences professionals interested in unlocking the information in the following TOXNET and emergency response tools:  ChemIDPlus, LactMed, TOXLINE, CHEMM, REMM, and WISER.

How much time?
3 hours of work on your own time followed by a 1 hour synchronous session using Adobe Connect.  Participants who complete the class requirements are eligible for 4 MLA Continuing Education credits.

When?
Asynchronous work on your own (allow 3 hours):  October 21 – 31, 2013
Synchronous Adobe Connect session:  November 5, 2013, 1 pm ET (12 pm CT, 11 am MT, 10 am PT)

How to Register?
Enrollment is limited, so register soon!  Visit:  http://nnlm.gov/ntcc/classes/schedule.html

Questions?
Contact ntc@utah.edu.

Coming Soon: New Interface for TOXNET

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

An updated version of TOXNET (TOXicology Data NETwork) will be released in 2014.

The new design will offer seamless navigation for non-professionals as well as professionals. The update will include a more current look and feel, improved interactive capabilities and a better integrated “All Search Results.”

TOXNET is a group of databases covering toxicology, hazardous chemicals, environmental health and related areas. The Web interface provides an easy way to search databases of varying formats and content. It can be used to locate toxicology data, literature references, and toxics release information on particular chemicals, as well as to identify chemicals that cause specific effects.

TOXNET was originally designed and developed prior to the Internet, primarily for a professional audience. It has become increasingly important for its data to be accessible for a wide variety of users, many of whom are not professionals in the toxicological fields, and who are not familiar with the related vocabulary and acronyms.

Visualize World Peace and Air Pollution

Monday, August 12th, 2013

Take a moment and think what it would look like to achieve world peace. Now, think about what it would look like to see air pollution trends in your neighborhood. Thinking about world peace might lower your blood pressure, where as thinking about air pollution…well, need I say more?

The Environmental Council of the States (ECOS) recently announced the release of the Toxic Trends web application. ECOS is a national non-profit, non-partisan association of state and territorial environmental agency leaders. The interactive Toxic Trends map visually represents industrial air pollution information and relative risk scores to inhabitants across the United States. The application uses data from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) database and other EPA sources. Toxic Trends provides public access to toxic pollution data from environmental releases of medium to large pollution sources like local refineries and aluminum smelters.

The U.S. National Library of Medicine provides access to TRI data via the TOXNET suite of databases at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/

Toxic Trends can be found at: http://toxictrends.org