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NIH Funding Opportunity: All of Us Research Program Engagement Partners

The National Institutes of Health has announced a new funding opportunity for organizations interested in helping engage volunteers in the All of Us Research Program, part of the Precision Medicine Initiative. This opportunity is open to national and regional organizations, as well as local community groups, and will support activities to promote enrollment and retention in the All of Us Research Program across diverse communities. All of Us is an ambitious effort to gather data over time from 1 million or more people living in the United States, with the ultimate goal of accelerating research and improving health. Unlike research studies that are focused on a specific disease or population, All of Us will serve as a national research resource to inform thousands of studies, covering a wide variety of health conditions. Researchers will use data from the program to learn more about how individual differences in lifestyle, environment and biological make-up can influence health and disease. By taking part, people will be able to learn more about their own health and contribute to an effort that will advance the health of generations to come. NIH plans to launch the program later this year.

Pending available funds, NIH is designating up to $5 million per year over the next three years to support these community-led outreach efforts, to complement the program’s existing research and engagement infrastructure. Eligible organizations include nonprofits, other community- and faith-based organizations, minority-serving institutions and local governments, among others. Applicants must submit their proposed strategy for helping educate community members or health care providers about All of Us, whether through special events, trainings, communication programs or other activities. Applicants must also include a funding proposal tied to specific outreach goals. In addition to conducting their engagement activities, awardees will provide input on program plans and share feedback about community needs. Applications are due on March 24, 2017, and NIH plans to issue awards in May 2017.

Coming Soon: Updated Algorithm for PubMed Best Match Sort Order

An enhanced relevance algorithm for the “Best Match” sort order is coming to PubMed. The new algorithm incorporates machine learning to re-rank the top articles returned for improved relevance. The standard PubMed Best Match sort is based on a weighted term frequency algorithm. This approach calculates the frequency with which terms appear in PubMed records. Those frequencies are then applied in a weighted fashion to return a ranked list of PubMed citations that match your query terms. The new relevance algorithm includes machine learning to re-rank the top articles returned. This algorithm combines over 150 signals that are helpful for finding best matching results. Most of these signals are computed from the number of matches between the search terms and the PubMed record, while others are either specific to a record (e.g., publication type; publication year) or specific to a search (e.g., search length). The new ranking model was built on relevance data obtained from anonymous PubMed search logs that were aggregated over an extended period of time.

Because the “Best Match” results are calculated using a new machine learning environment, there might be a slight change in total search results when sorting by “Best Match.” Users who sort by “Best Match” are typically clicking through citations on the first page of retrieval; therefore, it is important for NLM to continue to incorporate new tools to improve this ranking. The new machine learning system achieves significant improvement in retrieval performance over the weighted term frequency algorithm alone. Additionally, the “Search details” portlet will be replaced with “Best match search information” that will display translations to MeSH, etc., and additional synonyms under the “See more…” link. The Search button will not be available for the new portlet used for “Best Match” results. To use “Best Match” as the default sort order for PubMed results, change your preferences in My NCBI. For additional details and illustrations, visit the NLM Technical Bulletin.

Love Your Data Week: February 13-17!

Love Your Data week is an online event coming up on February 13-17, 2017! This year’s theme is emphasizing data quality for researchers at any stage in their career. Follow the activities on Twitter to gain inspiration, share ideas, and find new ways to promote data services and resources at your library and beyond! More details will be available soon!

Webinar on March 7: Introduction to Graphic Medicine

The one-hour webinar Introduction to Graphic Medicine, with instructor Matthew Noe from the Lamar Soutter Library at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, will be held on Tuesday, March 7, 10:00-11:00am PST. The session will introduce the emerging field of graphic medicine, or, the use of comics in healthcare. It will begin with a brief overview of the field’s emergence, and then highlight the role that comics can play in two key areas of librarianship: health literacy and medical education. The webinar will conclude with suggestions for collection development and programming to kickstart graphic medicine in your library.

NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine Winter 2017 Issue Available Online!

Michael Phelps on the cover of NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine

The Winter 2017 issue of NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine highlights health topics including depression, prostate enlargement, breast cancer, pain management, and menopause. The cover features swimmer Michael Phelps, the most decorated Olympian of all time. Despite his incredible success in competitive swimming, away from the pool he was among the many people who deal with depression. He shares his story with NIH MedlinePlus magazine.

The issue also features an article about menopause. Melanie Modlin, Deputy Director, Office of Communications and Public Liaison at the National Library of Medicine, was interested in helping researchers learn about the differences in symptoms women experience as they approach “the menopausal transition.” She volunteered for a clinical trial studying the impact of changing hormone levels on thinking ability and sleep and describes her experience with NIH MedlinePlus magazine.

NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine is the free, trusted consumer guide to the vast array of authoritative online health and medical information in MedlinePlus. Published four times a year, the magazine showcases the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) latest medical research and healthcare information. NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine is freely available as a print subscription, e-mail alerts, and online.

NN/LM Monthly Webinar Series on Systematic Reviews, February through July, 2017

The NN/LM South Central Region is sponsoring the webinar series, Pieces of Systematic Review, featuring guest speaker Margaret Foster, on the first Thursday of every month from Febuary – July at 8:00-9:00am PT. The first session will be held Thursday, February 2. Systematic reviews are well-documented as contributing to evidence-based healthcare by, in part, revealing gaps in the literature or illustrating the effectiveness of health interventions. They are common practice, but they can often be fraught with issues in how they’re conducted, leaving a constant need for education and discussion. Margaret Foster is an Associate Professor at Texas A&M University and serves as the Systematic Reviews Coordinator at the Medical Sciences Library with a joint position at the School of Public Health and the College of Medicine of the Texas A&M University Health Sciences Center. The series will highlight the following topics:

  • February 2, 2017 – How do you determine if a research question is right for a systematic review?
  • March 2, 2017 – What searches beyond the typical databases should be done?
  • April 6, 2017 – What happens after the search?
  • May 4, 2017 – What free software is useful for conducting review?
  • June 1, 2017 – How can a librarian support other types of reviews (scoping, integrative, rapid)?
  • July 6, 2017 – What are the new developments in review methods?

Webinar Registration Available: Using ALA’s Libraries Transform Campaign for Your Library

On March 14, 11:00am-12:00pm PDT, join Jeff Julian, Director of the Public Awareness Office for the American Library Association, for the one-hour informative session Using ALA’s Libraries Transform Campaign for Your Library, hosted by the NN/LM Middle Atlantic Region. Attendees will learn about ALA’s Libraries Transform public awareness and advocacy campaign which effectively conveys the transformative nature of today’s libraries and the critical role they play in the digital age, as well as how to incorporate messaging into regular communication channels to leverage the campaign in advocacy activities and more.

Submit Nominations for 2017 DeBakey Library Services Outreach Award by May 1!

The Friends of the National Library of Medicine are seeking nominations for this year’s Michael E. DeBakey Library Services Outreach Award. All nominations must be received by May 1, 2017 via mail, fax, or email. Nominees must be currently employed as a health sciences librarian and have worked in such a position for at least five years immediately preceding the award. The nomination may be made for contributions by the librarian as demonstrated by excellence and achievement in leadership, publications, teaching, research, special projects or any combination of these. Self-nominations are accepted and encouraged. Nominations must be in writing and include the following elements:

  • The official nomination form
  • A precise description of the nominee’s achievements, no more than five pages
  • A current resume or curriculum vitae
  • Any additional information that would assist the jury in the evaluation of the nomination and selection of the recipient. Please include no more than ten extra pages.

NLM Classification Updated on January 26

The 2017 winter edition of the NLM Classification has been issued. It has moved from an annual spring update to twice-yearly updates. The 2017 winter edition includes several additions and changes to the Index and Schedules. All main index headings are now linked to the 2017 vocabulary in the MeSH Browser. The 2017 summer version will be published in mid-to-late August, and will encompass the ongoing systematic review of particular classification schedules and other miscellaneous updates. The PDF version will be published annually in conjunction with the summer version. Contact NLM for further information, questions, or comments.

Research Data Access and Preservation Summit 2017 (RDAP17) April 19-21 in Seattle: February 3 Early Bird Registration Deadline

The Research Data Access and Preservation Summit 2017 (RDAP17) will be held April 19-21 at the Renaissance Seattle Hotel. Take advantage of the early-bird registration rate of $190 by Friday, February 3! RDAP17 will offer a diverse set of topics and presenters cutting across disciplines, institutions, and roles involved with the major challenges of providing access to and preserving research data. Panels, posters, lightning talks, institutional snapshots, and problem tables will provide greater opportunities for engagement with the community. In addition to the regular program, on April 21 RDAP17 is hosting two incredibly affordable workshops on A Friendly Introduction to GitHub ($25) and Building and Utilizing Rubrics for Assessment of Data Management Plans (free). You can follow all of the RDAP17 news via website, Twitter, Facebook, and listserv.