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Update for NLM’s Specialized Information Services Resources

by Colette Hochstein, DMD, MLS, Technical Information Specialist
National Library of Medicine
Division of Specialized Information Services
Bethesda, MD

This article summarizes the latest developments for several of NLM’s Specialized Information Services resources as of February 2014.

NLM HSDB record created for West Virginia Elk River chemical
A Hazardous Substances Data Bank record was created for 4-Methylcyclohexanemethanol (Chemical Abstracts Service registry number (CASRN) of 34885-03-5), the chemical found in the January, 2014, West Virginia Elk River chemical spill. Other terms for the spilled substance are “MCHM” or “crude MCHM” or “4-Methylcyclohexane methanol.”

New Dietary Supplement Label Database available
Researchers, health care providers, and consumers can now investigate the ingredients listed on the labels of about 18,000 (and growing) dietary supplements. The Dietary Supplement Label Database (DSLD) is available free of charge. It is hosted by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and is the result of collaboration between the NIH Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) and the National Library of Medicine (NLM), with input from federal stakeholders. Hundreds of new dietary supplements are added to the marketplace each year; others are removed. Product formulations are frequently adjusted, as is information on labels. The DSLD provides product information that can be searched and organized as desired. 

Dietary supplements, taken regularly by about half of U.S. adults, can add significant amounts of nutrients and other ingredients to the diet. Supplements include vitamins, minerals, herbals and botanicals, amino acids, enzymes, and more. They come in many different forms, including tablets, capsules, and powders, as well as liquids and energy bars. Popular supplements include vitamins D and E; minerals like calcium and iron; herbs such as echinacea and garlic; and specialty products like glucosamine, probiotics, and fish oils.

Household Products Database
The Household Products Database (HPD) now provides information on over 13,000 products with over 7,130 Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) links. HPD links consumer brands to health effects from Material Safety Data Sheets provided by manufacturers and allows scientists and consumers to research products based on chemical ingredients. The database is designed to help answer the following typical questions:

  • What are the chemical ingredients and their percentage in specific brands?
  • Which products contain specific chemical ingredients?
  • Who manufactures a specific brand? How do I contact this manufacturer?
  • What are the acute and chronic effects of chemical ingredients in a specific brand?
  • What other information is available about chemicals in the toxicology-related databases of the National Library of Medicine?

NLM TOXMAP Interface Update
An updated version of TOXMAP will be available later this year. It will provide an improved map appearance and interactive capabilities as well as a more current GIS look-and-feel. This includes seamless panning, immediate map refresh when zooming to a given location, collapsible side panels for maximum map size, and automatic size adjustment with window size. The new TOXMAP will have improved Census layers and availability by Census Tract (2000 and 2010), Canadian National Pollutant Release Inventory (NPRI) data, U.S. nuclear power plants and improved and updated congressional district boundaries. TOXMAP is an interactive web site that shows the amount and location of reported toxic chemicals released into and present in the environment on maps of the United States. The site allows users to visually explore information about releases of toxic chemicals by industrial facilities around the United States as reported annually to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Federal law requires facilities in certain industries, which manufacture, process, or use significant amounts of toxic chemicals, to report annually on their releases of these chemicals to the EPA TRI Program.

Notice of data change for licensees of CRISP data distributed via the National Library of Medicine Data Distribution Program
The CRISP sub-file of toxicology-related research projects has been removed from the National Library of Medicine (NLM) TOXNET version of TOXLINE. NLM will now pull these projects directly from the NIH RePORTER system, a searchable database of federally funded biomedical research projects conducted at universities, hospitals, and other research institutions, maintained by the NIH, and a replacement for CRISP. The TOXLINE sub-file name has been changed to RePORTERTOX. CRISP data is now available in complete form from NIH RePORTER. NLM will no longer make this data available in XML. Potential licensees wanting this toxicology-related grant and project information will be able to access more frequently updated versions of the records directly on the NIH system. In addition, users can easily select additional information from the NIH site.

WISER for Windows 4.5 is now available
This new version of WISER fully integrates Chemical Hazards Emergency Medical Management (CHEMM) content and updates the Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG) content to 2012. Full integration of CHEMM content includes:

  • New hospital provider and preparedness planner profiles, along with a customized home screen for all WISER profiles
  • Acute care guidelines for six known mass casualty agents/agent classes
  • The addition of a wealth of CHEMM reference material
  • CHEMM Intelligent Syndromes Tool (CHEMM-IST), a new help identify tool designed to diagnose the type of chemical exposure after a mass casualty incident.

National Library of Medicine Radiation Emergency Medical Management (REMM)
Key changes to REMM include:

  • REMM Multimedia Library: highlights
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