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Harnessing the Power of Content in Scientific Research

Posted on September 11th, 2017 by in Pharma R&D


Biological research today can be summarized in one word — data.

Massive quantities of information are generated daily from large and small laboratories, individuals, universities, and commercial organizations. Their findings, along with those of other individuals or groups, are published in multiple papers, across a wide range of scientific journals, over a period of years. On average, each year more than a million new records are added to PubMed – a service of the National Library of Medicine that indexes more than 23 million references comprising the MEDLINE bibliographic database at present.

New findings are published, and each new result triggers more questions. Information is needed to understand experimental results, describe an individual cellular pathway, or identify the interactions of multiple regulatory networks are scattered throughout dozens if not hundreds or thousands of articles and publications. The volume and complexity of the data have outstripped researchers’ ability to keep up with the progress of science, even in their chosen fields. Researchers are left with a question that’s impossible to answer — “What have I missed?”

Elsevier’s proprietary text-mining technology helps researchers find their way in this sea of data. This technology extracts facts from abstracts and full-text scientific publications from Elsevier and other trusted publishers, as well as from PubMed abstracts.

Although the technology is applicable to information all along the drug discovery and development pipeline, the first application has been to create the knowledge-base underlying Pathway Studio, an integrated data mining and visualization solution that allows investigators to search for facts on proteins, genes, diseases, drugs, and other entities; analyze experimental results and interpret data in a biological context; and build and visualize disease models representing the underlying biology of a particular condition or response. Pathway Studio provides direct access to underlying evidence extracted from the literature so that scientists can decide for themselves which results are relevant to their research.

Having access to the information derived from all those publications gives researchers a measurable advantage in rendering a complete picture of the genes and proteins involved in the biology of a disease or response to a drug.

Read the white paper to learn more: Harnessing the power of content.

All opinions shared in this post are the author’s own.

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