Looking for Databases beyond PubMed

Sometimes a clinical or research topic is more specialized than general medical sciences. Searching a database beyond PubMed may help discover relevant articles. The Pitt libraries subscribe to an array of databases that cover specialized subjects or health sciences fields. All of the databases below, and more, are available from the HSLS listing of Databases A-Z (you’ll be prompted for Pitt Passport if working remotely). Here are some highlights:

APA PsycINFO: Mental, social and behavioral health sciences inclusion, including psychology and psychiatry, make this resource a good choice for sociological, psych, or addiction queries. It encompasses both journals and books, along with dissertations.

EMBASE: This European-oriented database includes all disciplines of medical and biomedical sciences, but it excels at drug questions. It includes granular indexing for drugs with more drug-related controlled vocabulary terms using EMBASE’s EMTREE thesaurus. “Triplet chemotherapy,” “drug craving,” and “drug comparison” are three examples of drug-specific vocabulary terms not found in PubMed’s MeSH vocabulary. In addition, this would be a good source for conference abstracts and drugs used abroad.

Global Health: An intriguing blend of public health, tropical disease and infectious disease sources. It considers community health and nutrition, yet also includes parasitology, medicinal and poisonous plants, and more. Continue reading

Changing Resources: Transitioning from Scopus to Web of Science

The University libraries will be ending their subscription to the Scopus database on December 31, 2021. This decision was made based on usage statistics and cost-per-use metrics.

Web of Science (WoS), the authoritative and continually updated citation database, is comparable to Scopus. WoS allows you to track prior research and monitor current developments, see who is citing your work, and measure the influence of colleagues’ work.

WoS consists of six databases:

  • Web of Science Core Collection (1945-present)
  • BIOSIS Previews (1969-present)
  • KCI-Korean Journal Database (1980-present)
  • MEDLINE® (1950-present)
  • Russian Science Citation Index (2005-present)
  • SciELO (2002-present)

You can also search all six databases at one time.

Do you want to learn more about what Web of Science offers?

Continue reading

Public Availability of COVID-19 Data

COVID-19 Global Pandemic affecting the world
The ability to view the number of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths from COVID-19 has decidedly improved since the first U.S. cases were diagnosed. Non-governmental organizations initially tasked themselves with providing COVID data access using county, state, and U.S. maps (Coronavirus Tracking Center from Johns Hopkins). The COVID Racial Data Tracker was developed a little later to highlight the increased risk of COVID incidence and mortality for people of color.

In January 2021, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released the new public-facing COVID Data Tracker, providing access to the most current information, incorporating daily updates, and showing county, state, and national levels using maps with data download options.

The county level map data includes the level of community transmission, cases, deaths, mortality, and more. You can also view a 20-day time-lapse map of community-level transmission by county. The maps can be a little misleading: Nebraska stopped sending COVID data in July; other states reduced the number of weekly reports sent; and several fail to include information such as where patients live, whether they were hospitalized or survived, or even what their race and/or ethnicity is. Consequently, the data may appear in state estimates on the COVID Data Tracker but are not available for other estimates. Continue reading

Featured Workshop: Wikipedia for Health Sciences Students

HSLS offers classes in a wide array of subjects—citation management, database searching, bibliographic management, and more! You can quickly view all Upcoming Classes and Events or sign up to receive the weekly Upcoming HSLS Classes and Workshops email.

Our upcoming featured workshop is Wikipedia for Health Sciences Students. The first workshop in this two-part series will take place on Tuesday, November 2, 2021, 2-3 p.m. The second workshop will take place on Wednesday, November 17, 2021, 1-2:30 p.m.

Register for both sessions*:

Wikipedia is an online encyclopedia known for its abundance of information on a vast range of topics, including biomedical subjects. A vital component of Wikipedia is the community of volunteers who help to create and improve content through a model of open collaboration. Since Wikipedia can be edited by anyone at any time, it has gained a reputation for being an unreliable source of information.

Despite widespread skepticism of its value, studies have shown that the quality of information on Wikipedia is generally similar to other encyclopedias. Further, its health information is extremely widely used by the public, as well as students and professionals: Wikipedia’s biomedical articles are accessed 7 billion times per year, and over 90% of medical students and 50-70% of physicians report using these articles. Continue reading

HSLS Staff News

The HSLS Staff News section includes recent HSLS presentations, publications, staff changes, staff promotions, degrees earned, etc.

Names in bold are HSLS-affiliated


Ansuman Chattopadhyay, Assistant Director for Molecular Biology Information Services:

Liu Q, Bhuiyan MIH, Liu R, Song S, Begum G, Young CB, Foley LM, Chen F, Hitchens TK, Cao G, Chattopadhyay A, He L, Sun D. Attenuating vascular stenosis-induced astrogliosis preserves white matter integrity and cognitive function. J Neuroinflammation. 2021 Aug 28;18(1):187. doi: 10.1186/s12974-021-02234-8. PMID: 34454529; PMCID: PMC8403348.

Zheng W, D’Aiuto L, Demers MJ, Muralidaran V, Wood JA, Wesesky M, Chattopadhyay A, Nimgaonkar VL. Insights into bioinformatic approaches for repurposing compounds as anti-viral drugs. Antivir Chem Chemother. 2021 Jan-Dec;29:20402066211036822. doi: 10.1177/20402066211036822. PMID: 34463534; PMCID: PMC8411619.

Kelsey Cowles, Research and Instruction Librarian:

Cowles K, Glusker A, Gogan A, Lillich A, Sheppard M, Vitale E, Waltman L, Wilson T, NNLM MAR Community Engagement Coordinator, and Wilson AJ. “Crowdsourcing and Collaboration: Academic Libraries as Partners in NNLM’s #CiteNLM Wikipedia Edit-a-Thons.” In Wikipedia and Academic Libraries: A Global Project, edited by Bridges LM, Pun R, and Arteaga R, 2021. Continue reading