Happy Thanksgiving!


Thanksgiving Day 1918 at the Nurses' Dining Hall, US Army Base Hospital No. 13, Limoges, France. Image courtesy of the National Library of Medicine.

The Levy Library and the Media Resource Center will close early today, at 7:50 pm. Both will remain closed all day tomorrow, Thursday, November 27, and reopen with regular hours on Friday, November 28. Happy holidays!

Free Trial – Psych Evidence Matters


Psych Evidence Matters is an information resource for evidence-based psychiatry. You can use the system to construct a question like When treating Depression, what is the rate of effectiveness of Fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem) as measured by the outcome Complete response + partial response (Objective response)? or When treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) with Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI), what is the rate of Gastroenterological (GI) side effects (e.g. nausea, vomiting etc.)? Psych Evidence Matters will return a neat graphical summary of the outcomes of randomized clinical trials, easily sortable by characteristics such as patient age and study blinding characteristics. From there, links take you to detailed summaries and PubMed abstracts of the studies.

Give it a try by accessing it at http://www.psychevidencematters.com (on-campus only) and let us know what you think at refdesk@mssm.edu or ext. 47240. How does it look? Is anything confusing about it or missing from it? Would it be useful to you?

Reference Desk Open Again!

The construction work that was being done above the Reference Desk is done, and there will be a reference librarian at the desk until 4 pm today. As usual though, reference librarians will be around later than that – if you need help and there is no one at the desk, check out the reference librarians' office (around the corner to the right of the Circulation Desk), or ask at the Circulation Desk for a reference librarian.

Reference Desk Opening Late Today

The workers who are renovating the library need access to the ceiling above the Reference Desk this morning – there's lots of ladders and plastic sheeting and copper pipe around, making the desk a little bit difficult to access. So, the desk will officially "open" when they are finished (later today, we hope); in the meantime you can call 212-241-7240 or knock on the Reference Librarians' door (just around the corner to the right of the Circulation Desk) for help with your research. Thanks for bearing with us!

More Classes – EndNote, RefWorks, NCBI, PowerPoint

The December schedule of Levy Library classes has now been posted:

Thursday December 4, 4-5 pm - Introduction to EndNote X2 with Find Full Text
Tuesday December 9, 4-5 pmEndNote X2: Advanced Features
Thursday December 11, 4-5 pm – Introduction to RefWorks
Tuesday December 16, 4-5:30 pm – Introduction to NCBI’s Entrez and BLAST
Thursday December 18, 4-5:30 pm – Getting the Picture — Finding Images & Editing Them in PowerPoint

For descriptions of the classes and to register, go to our classes page.

Authorized We briefly became "authorized personnel" last night and explored the area behind the mysterious wall in the Library, to bring you a peek at how the renovation is going. It certainly doesn't look like the library we're familiar with, and doesn't (yet) look like the library we can see in the architects' projections. Right now, it is definitely a construction zone.Picture 004 

Most of the shelving has been removed, and all of the layers of carpet have been ripped up to leave a concrete floor. The drop ceiling is gone too, so lots of pipes and wires are exposed. For now the walls are all still the same, but the outlines of the new classrooms have been constructed and there is some work being done in the former offices behind the Circulation area.

Picture 007

 This will eventually be the wall between our two new classrooms. When we're all done, we hope people won't be too distracted by the view from the larger classroom:Picture 010 

And a few more shots of future study areas and offices:

Picture 020  Picture 015 

Picture 013 Picture 014

Visualizing Article Citations

You might already know that you can use Web of Science to look up articles that have cited one of your papers, or a paper of interest to you. This can be a great way to find related articles, especially if your topic is obscure or hard to search for. Now, Web of Science's new Citation Mapper tool adds another level to citation searching: starting with one article of interest, you can build a map of citations, going backward and forward up to two generations. You'll generate a web-like map of citation connections that you can color-code and label according to author, journal, subject, institution and more.

For example, try starting with Dr. Jeffrey Laitman's 1997 article in the American Journal of Medicine, "The human aerodigestive tract and gastroesophageal reflux: an evolutionary perspective". By finding this record in the Web of Science and clicking its "Citation Map" link, you can generate a map (I used the options to generate a map of 2 generations, forwards and backwards). Using the map's Appearance button to set the Node Text to Subject Category, you can see that this General Medicine article was cited by papers in Immunology, Dentistry, Nursing and Neurosciences journals, which were in turn cited by articles in journals about subjects ranging from Acoustics to Pediatrics. This can be a great visual to track the evolution of an idea or, if you Citation Map your own articles, to find potential interdisciplinary collaborators.

Happy Birthday Frederick Banting

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It’s the United Nations’ World Diabetes Day today, scheduled on November 14 to mark the birthday of Frederick Banting, one of the co-discoverers of insulin. The theme this year is Diabetes in Children and Adolescents. As you can imagine, PubMed provides citations to many thousands of articles about pediatric diabetes – a search for diabetes mellitus as a major topic heading limited to All Child: 0-18 years returns nearly 2000 review articles, not to mention research articles, clinical studies, news and opinion articles; even a list of “Tips and Tricks for Halloween”. To find information about diabetes in adolescents and children, you should probably get more specific and add more search terms to a PubMed search. Or, for general information about the disease and its treatment try a database like UpToDate (on campus only) or eMedicine, or look in an ebook.

Banting And what if you want to go back to Frederick Banting’s original research on pancreatic extracts? PubMed generally only contains citations back to the 1940s or so. Dr. Banting’s Nobel Prize winning work was done in the 1920s so it’s not in PubMed (though you can find a citation to a 1937 Science article of his). Instead, try an author search for Banting FG in Web of Science, which includes citations back to around 1900.

RefWorks Interruptions

We got an email yesterday from RefWorks that mentioned there have been some brief outages lately. We haven't noticed any problems or had anybody report them, but if you are having RefWorks issues they advise that you restart your computer and try again. If that doesn't work, you can contact them at support@refworks.com (if you like you could cc us at refdesk@mssm.edu so that we can help track any issues).

And, remember that you can always contact us at the library if you encounter problems with or have questions about RefWorks or any of the other resources we provide access to…

Librarians – read all about us

This month's issue of The Scientist has an article called "Libraries 2.0: Secrets from science librarians that can save you hours of work" (links work on campus only). It focuses on biosciences librarians, but the tips (I hope they're not secrets!) it gives are also applicable for medical researchers, clinicians and plenty of others. Some of them are things that we try to emphasize when we teach classes or help people at the reference desk, like using MeSH to search PubMed, and managing references with EndNote or RefWorks. There are also suggestions from librarians and researchers about how to "get the most out of your librarian".

The article does have a few oddities – we'd be happy to explain to you, for example, that BLAST is not a database. But the author is certainly correct that we can "scope out particular resources for you, give
your lab a tutorial session on special database searching, or hunt down ancient and
obscure citations". And we are indeed "a well-versed treasure trove of
knowledge", if we do say so ourselves.

So take a look at the article, and let us know what we can do to help you!