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Archive for February, 2012

Data Information Literacy Research Project: A Collaboration Between Librarians and Research Scientists

In partnership with librarians at the University of Minnesota, the University of Oregon, and Cornell University, the Purdue University Libraries received nearly $250,000 from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to develop training programs for the next generation of scientists, to enable them to find, organize, use, and share data efficiently and effectively. This training will be vital to scientists as they look to secure research funding. In 2007, the National Science Foundation issued a report on the need to build public collections of research data and since 2011 has required scientists to include data management plans in their grant applications.

The Data Information Literacy research project will be carried out over a two-year period by five project teams, to develop and implement a data information literacy curriculum. Two of the teams, consisting of a data librarian, a subject librarian and a disciplinary faculty researcher, are based at Purdue, with one team each at the other institutions. The program is intended for graduate students in engineering and science disciplines who are working toward careers as research scientists. With the continued evolution of technology driven research or e-science impacting the skills necessary for effective data management and curation, a curriculum designed to effectively prepare the next generation of scientists for the dynamic nature of research is essential.

The teams are constructed to represent a variety of subject areas, from electrical and computer engineering to landscape architecture, so that commonalities and differences in data curation needs across disciplines can be explored. Each team will conduct an assessment of data needs of their discipline, including interviewing and observing researchers. The teams will then develop and implement targeted instruction and assess the impact of that instruction in developing the data information literacy skills of graduate students.

The results of this first ever effort at articulating and addressing data information literacy skills will help future scientists and engineers contribute to and take full advantage of the potentials that cyberinfrastructure and information technologies provide. The collaboration between librarians and faculty will identify the educational needs of future e-scientists in organizing, describing, disseminating and preserving their data, and teach them these skills in ways that can be applied in their day-to-day research activities.

FDA Rare Disease Patient Advocacy Day

On March 1, 2012, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will celebrate the fifth annual Rare Disease Day by hosting the “FDA Rare Disease Patient Advocacy Day” to engage and educate the rare disease community on regulatory processes related to rare diseases. This meeting is intended to enhance the awareness of the rare disease community as to FDA’s roles and responsibilities in the development of products (drugs, biological products and devices) for the diagnosis, prevention, and/or treatment of rare diseases or conditions.

This educational meeting will consist of live and interactive simultaneous webcast of presentations provided by FDA experts from various Centers and Offices, as well as from outside experts. The interactive meeting will include two general panel discussion sessions, as well as afternoon breakout sessions for more in-depth information on the roles of FDA. To view and connect to the live meeting, please visit the FDA Webcast Connect Pro Instructions webpage. The webcast will begin at 5:30am (PST) and end at 2:00pm (PST), tomorrow March 1, 2012.

Genetic Testing Registry Resource Launched

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director, Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D., unveiled the Genetic Testing Registry (GTR) today at NIH’s observance of international Rare Disease Day. This free resource, developed by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), features a versatile search interface that allows users to search by test, condition, gene, genetic mutation, and laboratory. It also serves as a portal to other medical genetics information, with context-specific links to practice guidelines and a variety of genetic, scientific, and literature resources available through the National Library of Medicine. Video tutorials on how to use the GTR are available on YouTube. The GTR staff welcomes comments and questions as users become familiar with the Registry. To submit input, please use the online Feedback Form for the Genetic Testing Registry.

Genetic tests currently exist for about 2,500 diseases, and the field continues to grow at a fast pace. To keep up with the constantly changing field, GTR will be updated frequently, using data voluntarily submitted by genetic test providers. In addition to basic facts, GTR will offer detailed information on analytic validity, which assesses how accurately and reliably the test measures the genetic target; clinical validity, which assesses how consistently and accurately the test detects or predicts the outcome of interest; and information relating to the test’s clinical utility, or how likely the test is to improve patient outcomes.

GTR is built upon data from the laboratory directory of GeneTests, another NIH-funded resource that will be phased out over the coming year. GTR is designed to contain more detailed information than its predecessor, as well as to encompass a much broader range of testing approaches, such as complex tests for genetic variations associated with common diseases and with differing responses to drugs. GeneReviews, which is the section of GeneTests that contains peer-reviewed, clinical descriptions of more than 500 conditions, is also now available through GTR. For more information about this new online tool, please refer to the NIH Press Release.

NIDA Creates Easy-to-Read Website on Drug Abuse

A new, easy-to-read website on drug abuse designed for adults with a low reading literacy level (eighth grade or below) was launched today by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), part of the National Institutes of Health. The site, Easy-To-Read Drug Facts, which provides plain language information on neuroscience, drug abuse prevention and treatment, is also a resource for adult literacy educators. It has a simple design with a large default text size, motion graphic videos and other features that make it easy to read and use.

The website’s emphasis on plain language supports the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service’s commitment to clear government communication that the public can understand and use. The site goes beyond plain language by using a website design and features that are easy to use, including animated videos that explain the science of addiction and how drugs affect the brain. The website will use the ReadSpeaker text-to-speech tool that provides audio versions of each page without the need to download any software. The embedded highlighting tool enables website visitors to see synchronized highlighting of the text that is currently being read.

For more information, please visit Easy-To-Read Drug Facts or read the NIDA Press Release. For additional resources on health literacy, please refer to the NIH Clear Communication website.

New NLM Enviro-Health Links page: Tobacco, Smoking, and Health!

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) Division of Specialized Information Services (SIS) has released a new Enviro-Health Links page on Tobacco, Smoking, and Health. This page provides links to resources on smoking-related topics such as electronic and menthol cigarettes, chemicals in tobacco, smokeless tobacco, smoking in pregnancy, and existing laws and regulations. The page has pre-formulated searches from PubMed, TOXLINE, the Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB) and ChemIDplus.

NLM also offers other Enviro-Health Links on various topics, including:

Children’s Environmental Health

Developing and Using Medicines for Children

Education, Careers, and Outreach in Toxicology and Environmental Health

Indoor Air Pollution

Keeping the Artist Safe: Hazards of Arts and Crafts Materials

Lead and Human Health

Mercury and Human Health

Water Pollution

Women’s Health Resources

NLM Enviro-Health Links

Proposed Rule for Stage 2 Meaningful Use Posted to the Federal Register

The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for Stage 2 meaningful use was posted to the Office of the Federal Register today. The proposed rule outlines the next stage of meaningful use for the Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs, administered by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). CMS has developed a fact sheet to give providers an overview of the rule and how Stage 2 expands upon Stage 1 of meaningful use. Additional information about meaningful use is available on the CMS EHR Meaningful Use Overview web page.

Tox Town Adds New Uranium Page!

The National Library of Medicine’s Tox Town has added Uranium to the list of toxic substances on its chemical pages. Uranium is a radioactive element that is used in nuclear power plants and military applications. In the U.S., there are approximately 15,000 uranium mines in 14 states in the West and Southwest.  For information on uranium, how you might be exposed, and how it can affect your health, visit the English and Spanish Tox Town pages.


Early Bird Registration: Cross-Cultural Health Care Conference in Oahu February 8-9, 2013

The 3rd Cross-Cultural Health Care Conference: Collaborative and Multidisciplinary Interventions, will be held February 8-9, 2013, at the Ala Moana Hotel in Oahu, HI. Early bird registration is now available online, with a deadline of October 31, 2012. Register today and save money! Information regarding abstract submittal is also available. The abstract submission deadline is May 31, 2012.

The Hawaii Consortium for Continuing Medical Education (HCCME) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The Hawaii Consortium for Continuing Medical Education designates this live activity for a maximum of 12 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits. The conference web site includes a list of featured topics and speakers, as well as a “schedule at a glance.”

NLM’s 175th Anniversary: Reflections from the Director

U.S. Medicine is a publication serving healthcare professionals working in the Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense and U.S. Public Health Service. It provides a mix of news, medical updates, interviews, reports on special government topics and monthly columns. In the recently published special issue, This Year in Federal Medicine – Outlook 2012, National Library of Medicine Director Dr. Donald A.B. Lindberg, MD, took the opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate NLM’s 175 years of public service, and to look ahead to 2012 and beyond. He began by reviewing the enormous amount of electronic information generated through resources such as PubMed and MedlinePlus. He also acknowledged the role of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine in promoting access to health information throughout the U.S., and the support and training that NLM provides in the areas of biomedical informatics and health information technology. Dr. Lindberg also addressed the emerging opportunities to link NLM’s health information resources with electronic health records. Even though Dr. Lindberg expects budgetary challenges for NLM in 2012 and beyond, his outlook for the future remains very positive, as he envisions that NLM’s range of services will continue to expand into new areas of biomedical research and health care.

Specific themes mentioned by Dr. Lindberg in his future outlook include the continuing growth of NLM resources, such as PubMed/MEDLINE, PubMed Central, and In addition, several new NLM resources will be released in 2012, including a Genetic Testing Registry and a database of clinical significant human genetic variants. Dr. Lindberg also expects the continued development of NLM resources related to disaster preparedness, and he noted the recent deployment of these resources in events such as the Gulf Oil Spill, and the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Dr. Lindberg also expects that NLM will continue to utilize and expand the range of social media tools, mobile applications, and mobile versions of its resources to reach new and diverse audiences with high quality health information. He mentioned the impressive array of social media currently used by NLM, including 13 Twitter feeds, notably @medlineplus and the Spanish-language version @medlineplusesp, six Facebook pages and a new YouTube channel. The full text of Dr. Lindberg’s remarks is available on the U.S. Medicine web site.

Versioning in PubMed

PubMed now supports versioned citations. Revisions, scientific updates, and updates of reviews are examples of content that could be versioned. Versions are not intended for correcting specific errors in an article, for which published errata notices should continue to be used.

How Will Versions Be Identified?
The PMID of a versioned citation will remain constant while each version will have a unique version number assigned by PubMed. The combination of PMID and version number in the format PMID.version will be a unique identifier. All citations not versioned will be considered version 1. There may be occasions when a specific version will be deleted. In these cases, the version number assigned to the deleted version will be skipped, and the next version of the citation will be assigned the following number. Version numbers will not be reused.

Display of Versioned Citations in PubMed
Version information is noted on the Summary, Summary (text), Abstract, and Abstract (text), displays. On the Summary display, the version number is located before the journal title abbreviation. The article’s original publication date is retained, and the version publication date is enclosed in square brackets. The Summary (text) display has a similar format. The Abstract display also indicates the version number and version publication date. Users can easily access prior versions of the citation by clicking on the “Other versions” link. A menu will appear listing all versions with the corresponding publication date. The version currently being viewed is in grey text and is not a link. All other available versions are links that will take the user to the Abstract display for that version. The Abstract (text) display shows the version number and version publication date.

Summary display of a versioned citation

For more information, please read the NLM Technical Bulletin.