LigerCat is a visual approach to focusing your PubMed searches. Using Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) to refine your searching can be very useful, but often it is difficult to identify appropriate MeSH terms, even using the MeSH Database. LigerCat solves that problem for you. And it is fun to use!
Enter words into the LigerCat search box and LigerCat aggegrates the articles found in PubMed, putting the associated MeSH terms into a tag cloud. In this example I searched for ‘treatment her2 positive breast cancer”:
These results are weighted for frequency and relevancy. You can click on one or more terms and search PubMed instantly from the resulting “Selected Terms” table.
The search string LigerCat generated is:
((“therapy”[Subheading] OR “therapy”[All Fields] OR “treatment”[All Fields] OR “therapeutics”[MeSH Terms] OR “therapeutics”[All Fields]) AND her2[All Fields] AND positive[All Fields] AND (“breast neoplasms”[MeSH Terms] OR (“breast”[All Fields] AND “neoplasms”[All Fields]) OR “breast neoplasms”[All Fields] OR (“breast”[All Fields] AND “cancer”[All Fields]) OR “breast cancer”[All Fields])) AND (“Breast Neoplasms”[mh] AND “Receptor, erbB-2″[mh] AND “Treatment Outcome”[mh])
A ” Publication History’ table is also created from your original search. Mouse over the year to see how many articles were published. Or click on the year to view them in PubMed.
LigerCat evens searches for a protein sequence and returns the tag clouds and search tables as shown in the screenshots below:
Note: LigerCat searches PubMed.gov, not PubMed via LHL, so generally you will not see the UAB Article Linker buttons that provide full text. On campus, the Publisher buttons usually work if UAB licenses the content. This YouTube video shows one easy way to get to licensed full text off campus. Or, from the PubMed screen, log into MyNCBI by creating an account or using the Google or Institutional logins. Then Set your Outside Tool preference to UAB Article Linker. (See how.) You will now see the UAB Article Linker button in PubMed. Questions? Contact me.
About LigerCat: LigerCat stands for the Literature and Genomic Resource Catalog, and is brought to you by the Biology of Aging project at the MBLWHOI Library. It is a free resource available to all. Read this article to learn more:
LigerCat: using “MeSH Clouds” from journal, article, or gene citations to facilitate the identification of relevant biomedical literature. Sarkar IN, Schenk R, Miller H, Norton CN. AMIA Annu Symp Proc. 2009 Nov 14;2009:563-7.