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CAS Unveils SciFinder 5.0, Announces Online Release of CA Abstracts Dating to 1907.

Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) has announced that it is expanding the capabilities of its SciFinder desktop research tool to answer a wider range of questions relating to biomedical, chemical reaction, and chemical structure-related information. CAS has also announced that it is making chemistry-related literature and patents from 1907 to 1967 available online via STN International's CAOLD file.


According to the company, SciFinder is an easy-to-use desktop interface to the world's largest databases of scientific information, including CAS's Chemical Abstracts (CA) and Registry files. In SciFinder Release 5.0, available this summer, subscribers will gain access to:

* A New SciFinder biomedical module, the initial component of which will allow users to explore the MEDLINE database from the National Library of Medicine

* A Full Reaction Search query tool that enables users to ask more thorough reaction queries, and includes the ability to specify reaction sites and map atoms in the reactant to the product

* Enhanced substructure searching with built-in intelligence to permit users to draw structures for many organic substances independent of conventions used in the databases to be searched

"SciFinder is now established as an essential research tool for scientists," said Suzan A. Brown, CAS marketing director. "These additions strengthen SciFinder's power in several key areas of importance to the biomedical, pharmaceutical, and chemical industries."

Since its introduction in 1995, SciFinder has won two R&D 100 awards, among other industry honors, and is the fastest growing information tool in the sci-tech community, according to the company.

MEDLINE is a bibliographic database produced by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM). The database covers more than 3,900 journals of biomedical literature worldwide, the citations of which appear in Index Medicus, Index to Dental Literature, and International Nursing Index. MEDLINE coverage is from 1966 to the present, and includes CAS Registry Numbers from 1980 to the present. Over 99 percent of MEDLINE's citations are references to journal articles.

The CAOLD File

CAS's online databases reach back to 1967; to find earlier works, researchers need to consult print or microfilm. However, CAS is now making chemistry-related literature and patents from 1907 to 1967 accessible online via STN International's CAOLD File, creating a digital compendium of the entire century's scientific discoveries. CAS made the announcement in March at the 217th American Ghemical Society (AGS) national meeting in Anaheim, Galifornia.

CAS has captured Chemical Abstracts (CA) abstract titles, author names, and patent assignees in electronic form. They can all be searched by names and keywords in the CAOLD file.

"CAS is opening up an additional 60 years of scientific literature online for easy search and retrieval," said CAS director Robert Massie. "That amounts to more than 3 million documents from 1907-1967. including nearly 800,000 patents."

"Scientific research of all kinds began to accelerate in the first half of this century," said CA editor David Weisgerber. "Among many other areas of investigation recorded in CA volumes before 1967 were studies of natural products for medicinal purposes, which is a topic of renewed interest to today's chemists and pharmaceutical laboratories."

CA abstracts prior to 1967 have been available for display in the CAOLD file in image format since 1998, but the online indexing that enables researchers to identify abstracts of interest has been very limited for pre-1967 material. For example, it has been possible to identify substances discussed in the older documents by searching CAS Registry Numbers, but only back to the mid-1950s.

In addition to making information since 1907 available for online searching on STN, CAS will release the CA 10th and 11th Collective Indexes on CD-ROM. 10CI covers the period from 1977 through 1981, and 11CI covers 1982 through 1986. Their search interaction will be the same as that of CA and the 12CI and 13CI on CD-ROM. A total of 23 years of Chemical Abstracts will now be available on CD-ROM.

Source: CAS, Columbus, OH, 800/7534227; Fax: 614/447-3713;
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Date:May 1, 1999
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