On March 8 NLM implemented four new enhancements to PubMed:
Conflict of Interest Statements (COIS): PubMed includes conflict of interest statements below the abstract when these statements are supplied by the publisher.
Editorial Expressions of Concern: NLM has added editorial expressions of concern as a new pair of linking elements in the Comments/Corrections suite in PubMed. Expressions of concern, previously handled as comments, are labeled explicitly in the abstract display.
Results Display: The “Per page” menu, which allows users to customize the number of items that appear on the results screen, appears at the top of the results list.
Status Tag: The status tag [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE] has been replaced with the tag [Indexed for MEDLINE]. The Abstract display in PubMed includes a status tag only if the citation is indexed for MEDLINE. Additional status tags still appear in the MEDLINE and XML displays. The citation status search strategies continue to function as they always have.
A prototype online platform that uses real-time visualization and viral genome data to track the spread of global pathogens such as Zika and Ebola is the grand prize winner of the Open Science Prize. The international team competition is an initiative of the National Institutes of Health, in collaboration with the Wellcome Trust and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI). The winning team, Real-time Evolutionary Tracking for Pathogen Surveillance and Epidemiological Investigation, created its nextstrain.org prototype to pool data from researchers across the globe, perform rapid phylogenetic analysis, and post the results on the platform’s website. The winning team will receive $230,000 to fully develop their prototype with NIH awarding $115,000 to the U.S. members of the winning team, and the Wellcome Trust and HHMI also contributing $115,000.
The Open Science Prize is a global competition designed to foster innovative solutions in public health and biomedicine using open digital content. The prize, which was launched in October 2015, aims to forge new international collaborations that bring together open science innovators to develop services and tools of benefit to the global research community. All six finalist teams were considered exemplary by the funders and are to be commended for their tenacity in developing creative approaches to applying publicly-accessible data to solve complex biomedical and public health challenges. The topics spanned the breadth of biomedical and public challenges, ranging from understanding the genetic basis of rare diseases, mapping the human brain, and enhancing the sharing of clinical trial information. As evidenced from the six Open Science Prize finalists, public health and biomedical solutions are enriched when data are combined from geographically diverse sources. Further details are available in the NIH Press Release.
The National Library of Medicine has just released a new design for its main Web site search engine results page. The new design is responsive and is a result of usability testing, analytics, and user feedback. Searches for health topics will feature a MedlinePlus result on the right side of the screen. Search results from PubMed and the LocatorPlus catalog record will display separately, also on the right. Searches for an NLM product or service will highlight a curated result in the “NLM Recommended Resources” box. The facets have been combined into four basic categories and now can be found above the results display. They include:
Health Information: MedlinePlus encyclopedia pages, drug monographs, health topic pages, supplement pages, and MedlinePlus Magazine pages.
Programs and Services: NLM main Web site pages including NCBI and SIS.
Exhibits and Collections: History of Medicine Division exhibition sites and the Digital Collections records.
Web Archives: Older Web pages from the NLM main Web site.
The National Institutes of Health has just issued a Request for Information (RFI) seeking public comment on the data submission and access processes for the NIH National Center for Biotechnology (NCBI) database of Genotypes and Phenotypes (dbGaP). The RFI also seeks comment on the management of data in dbGaP in order to consider options to improve and streamline these processes and to maximize the use and utility of dbGaP. The complete RFI, as well as instructions on how to comment, are available on the NIH website. Electronic responses will be accepted through April 7, 2017. NIH will consider all public comments before taking next steps. No proprietary, classified, confidential, or sensitive information should be included in responses. Comments received, including any personal information, will be posted without change after the close of the comment period to the NIH Genomic Data Sharing website.
Additional information about the importance of this RFI is included in a new Under the Poliscopeblog posting, published by Dr. Carrie D. Wolinetz. For more information or additional questions, please contact the NIH Office of Science Policy.
The National Library of Medicine Board of Regents welcomed three new members at its recent meeting:
Jane Blumenthal, MSLS, the associate university librarian for health sciences and director of the Taubman Health Sciences Library at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. A past-president of the Medical Library Association, she has more than 30 years of experience in information and library services.
Eric Horvitz, MD, PhD, managing director and technical fellow at Microsoft Research. His research focuses on principles of machine intelligence and leveraging the complementarities of human and machine reasoning.
Gary Puckrein, PhD, executive director of the National Minority Quality Forum (NMQF), in Washington, DC. The NMQF strengthens efforts to use evidence-based, data-driven initiatives to eliminate premature death and preventable illness for racial and ethnic minorities and other special populations. Dr. Puckrein created and launched Minority Health Today, which served clinicians practicing in minority communities.
The National Library of Medicine seeks applications for novel informatics and data science approaches that can help individuals gather, manage and use data and information about their personal health. A goal of this program is to advance research and application by patients and the research community through broadly sharing the results via publication, and through open source mechanisms for data or resource sharing. To bring the benefits of big data research to consumers and patients, new biomedical informatics and data science approaches are needed, shaped to meet the needs of consumers and patients, whose health literacy, language skills, technical sophistication, education and cultural traditions affect how they find, understand and use personal health information. Data science approaches are needed to help individuals at every step, from harvesting to storing to using data and information in a personal health library.
Application deadlines are May 1, 2017, and March 19, 2018. Eligible applicants include higher education institutions, government entities, faith-based or community-based organizations, and other institutions. Applicants must base their proposed work on an informed profile of the intended users, and, the work should be developed through interaction with the user. The strongest projects will provide approaches that incorporate health data and information from more than one source, such as diagnostic images and links to full-text articles or genome sequence data linked to a family health history. An application should be centered on the problem area being addressed and the intended audience, propose a possible solution that employs novel data science or informatics, and undertake a pilot that will result in evidence of the degree of success and/or needed next steps. Applicants should expect to involve the intended users in their work. The number of awards will be contingent upon NIH appropriations and the submission of a sufficient number of meritorious applications. Up to $250,000 direct costs may be requested in any single year. The total project period may not exceed four years.
A major milestone was recently reached as MedlinePlus.gov launched its 1,000th health topic page about “Eye Care.” Created and maintained by the National Library of Medicine, MedlinePlus is the National Institutes of Health’s website providing trusted health information to the public. The winner of multiple awards and a consistent top scorer among federal websites, MedlinePlus debuted in 1998 with 22 health topic pages, which bring together information on a particular disease, condition, or wellness issue. Each health topic page provides a description of the condition or issue and directs users to vetted information from the NIH and other trusted sources. All content on MedlinePlus is reviewed and must meet strict quality guidelines.
MedlinePlus has steadily added new topics to respond to the growing needs of the public for reliable, up-to-date health information. The demand for additional health topics grew with the 2010 launch of MedlinePlus Connect, a service that links Electronic Health Records and other Health IT systems to targeted information from MedlinePlus. Today, over a million people visit MedlinePlus daily and benefit from the health topic pages, a medical encyclopedia, health news, surgery videos, a medical dictionary and much more. A Spanish language version of the site, MedlinePlus en español, premiered in 2002.
The Medical Library Association Guide to Data Management for Librarians, edited by Lisa Federer, provides a background from theoretical foundations to practical applications for librarians who are new to data management, as well as new ideas and approaches for experienced data librarians. It highlights the many ways that librarians are addressing researchers’ changing needs at a variety of institutions, including academic, hospital, and government libraries. Each chapter ends with “pearls of wisdom,” a bulleted list of 5-10 takeaway messages from the chapter that will help readers quickly put the ideas from the chapter into practice. This new publication supports librarians with exciting new opportunities to use their expertise and skills in the development of services and programs to help researchers meet the demands of the data-driven research enterprise!