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NIH introduces Images, a database of images in biomedical literature

More than 2.5 million images and figures from medical and life sciences journals are now available through Images, a new resource for finding images in biomedical literature. The database was developed and will be maintained by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), a division of the National Library of Medicine (NLM) at the National Institutes of Health. Images is available at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/images.

Images is expected to have a wide range of uses for a variety of user groups. These include the clinician looking for the visual representation of a disease or condition, the researcher searching for studies with certain types of analyses, the student seeking diagrams that elucidate complex processes such as DNA replication, the professional or educator looking for an image for a presentation, and the patient wanting to better understand his disease.

"Rapid and easy access to images in the biomedical literature should help scientists and others more quickly identify content of interest," said NCBI Director David Lipman, M.D. "We believe that the new database will be useful for the discovery process, as well as for educational and professional purposes."

The initial content of Images reflects images and figures contained in NCBI's PubMed Central full-text digital archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature, located at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc. Images content may be expanded in the future to include other NCBI full-text resources, such as NCBI's Bookshelf database of biomedical books and reports, at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books.

The Images database enables users to search images based on keywords and a variety of other parameters, such as author and publication date. Images and data can be easily saved to users' collections and shared with others through the use of My NCBI, a feature that allows users of NCBI resources to customize their search and display preferences, save and share searches, build bibliographies, and perform a variety of other functions.

NCBI creates public databases in molecular biology, conducts research in computational biology, develops software tools for analyzing molecular and genomic data, and disseminates biomedical information, all for the better understanding of processes affecting human health and disease. NCBI (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov) is a division of the National Library of Medicine (www.nlm.nih.gov), the world's largest library of the health sciences.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) - The Nation's Medical Research Agency - includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

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