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Archive for the ‘NLM Resources’ Category

New Tox Town Page Available on Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA)

PFOA (perfluorooctanoic acid) is a man-made chemical that is toxic and persistent in the environment. It is used to make products resistant to heat and to repel oil, grease, stains, and water. If you are wondering about exposure to PFOA or how it might affect your health, visit the new Tox Town page on Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA). The page is also available in Spanish.

Redesigned FTP Site for MeSH Downloads

The Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) FTP download site has been updated to include separate directories for each release year of MeSH. The FTP directories include:

  • A single directory for earlier files from 1999-2010.
  • The yearly release directories from 2011 to the latest full release which occurs in November of the preceding year.
  • The directory “MESH_FILES” with the latest release files that are updated every morning Monday – Friday.
  • File names ending with .nt and .ttl extensions that are for the MeSH RDF format.

Hopefully making these archive copies more readily available to the public will be useful for anyone interested in studying the history of MeSH terminology as it has progressed over the years. Distributed MeSH files are freely available to the public with agreement to NLM’s Memorandum of Understanding. For further information and illustrations, refer to the NLM Technical Bulletin.

National Library of Medicine Flags Incorrect Pesticide Toxicity Values

International Toxicity Estimates for Risk (ITER) is part of the National Library of Medicine’s Toxicology Data Network (TOXNET) and is compiled by Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment (TERA). It provides comparison charts of international risk assessment information and explains differences in risk values derived by different organizations. ITER provides chemical toxicity values or cancer classifications from the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), Health Canada, International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), NSF International, US EPA Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS), Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), and other Independent Peer Reviewed Values (IPRV). Chemical toxicity values in ITER are estimated to protect the general population assuming daily exposures to environmental chemicals for a lifetime. The TERA Center and the NLM provide periodic updates to keep the database as current as possible.

The US EPA IRIS chemical toxicity values (RfDs or RfCs) are considered by many to be a “gold standard of toxicity values.” However, up to 187 pesticide chemical toxicity values are currently incorrect, either for the RfD/RfC, for the cancer classifications, or both. ITER/TOXNET has added an alert flag for the IRIS pesticide toxicity values to ensure that users can access the more current pesticide toxicity value developed by the US EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP).

NLM Resources for National Safety Month 2016

June is National Safety Month. Check out the following resources from the National Library of Medicine (NLM) for reliable heath and safety information. The Division of Specialized Information Services (SIS) at NLM provides access to disaster and chemical safety resources for all age groups and populations, and MedlinePlus provides overviews of basic first aid skills:

  • Emergency and Disaster Preparedness for Special Populations – Access links to trustworthy disaster preparedness information for a wide range of populations, including different age groups, cultural and ethnic groups, and groups with specific health conditions.
  • Disaster Lit – Search a curated collection of links to disaster medicine and public health documents.
  • Haz-Map – Learn how to avoid workplace accidents by searching Haz-Map for diseases and other risks associated with specific jobs.
  • Household Products Database – Protect yourself, children, and pets from dangerous health effects for a wide range of household products, such as personal care, pet care, and arts & crafts products.
  • MedlinePlus – Read about First Aid resources, such as CPR, choking, drug abuse first aid, and creating a sling.

PubMed Display Changes

Several new changes have been implemented for PubMed displays:

  • A Digital Object Identifier (DOI) link when available will be added to the end of each PubMed abstract display.
  • The “Items per page” selection will be removed from the top of the results page because it is infrequently used by searchers. The selection will still be available at the bottom of the results page.
  • To change the default “items per page” for all results consider using the My NCBI “Result display preferences” option.

For illustrations of the changes and sample display screens, visit the NLM Technical Bulletin.

Six Lab Exercises for Creating Community Health Maps!

Learn how to use free and low cost mapping tools to create community health maps through a series of six lab exercises available at the NLM’s Community Health Maps blog. The lab exercises cover the entire Community Health Mapping Workflow from field data collection through online data presentation. For each of the six labs, an instructional PDF document and a Zip file of data to be used for each exercise are available for downloading. The topics for the six labs include:

  • Lab 1 – Field Data Collection (with either iOS or Android)
  • Lab 2 – Bringing Field Data into QGIS
  • Lab 3 – Combining Field Data with other Organizational Data
  • Lab 4 – Basic Spatial Analysis
  • Lab 5 – Cartography with QGIS
  • Lab 6 – Data Visualization With CartoDB

Images from NLM’s History of Medicine Now Available in NLM Digital Collections

Beginning today, Images from the History Medicine (IHM), the National Library of Medicine’s History of Medicine Division’s (HMD) online database of historical images, will be decommissioned from its current Luna Imaging platform, and formally launched in its new home in NLM’s Digital Collections, the Library’s free online resource of over 16,000 biomedical books and moving images. IHM is a collection of historical portraits, photographs, fine prints, caricatures, posters, and other graphic art that illustrates the social and historical aspects of medicine from the Middle Ages to the present. The collection covers subjects ranging from medieval medical practice to 19th century slum conditions to World War I hospitals to the international fight against drug abuse and AIDS. Now this entire image collection is more easily searchable, alongside digitized books and videos, and images can be downloaded more seamlessly. For more details, visit NLM’s Circulating Now blog.

Now Available: Recordings of NLM Theater Presentations at the 2016 MLA Conference!

The NLM exhibit booth at the Annual Meeting of the Medical Library Association (MLA) featured theater presentations to bring users up-to-date on several NLM products and services. Presentation recordings are now accessible from the NLM web site. The average video length is 20 minutes.

PubMed for Librarians Webinars: Online Training Opportunities in June and July!

Join the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and the NN/LM Training Office (NTO) for the free online class PubMed for Librarians. Classes in June and July 2016 are now open for registration! The class is divided into five segments (90 minutes each); Introduction to PubMed, MeSH, Automatic Term Mapping, Building and Refining Your Search, and Customization – My NCBI. Each segment is a synchronous online session that includes hands-on exercises and is worth 1.5 hours of MLA (Medical Library Association) CE (Continuing Education) credit. Participants can choose any or all of the 5 segments that interest them. Class space is limited, so register now!

National Library of Medicine’s Tox Town Farm Scene Gets an Update!

If you are looking for possible environmental health risks on a typical farm or need information on agricultural runoff, feeding operations or barns and silos, check out the newly updated National Library of Medicine (NLM) Tox Town Farm Scene.

The Farm joins previously updated Tox Town CityTown and Southwest scenes with an updated, photorealistic look to allow users to better identify with real-life locations. Each scene migrated from Flash to HTML 5 platform so it can be viewed on a variety of personal electronic devices, including iPads, iPad minis, and tablets. All location and chemical information remains the same.