Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Wiki’d!: Links from Europe PMC articles to Wikipedia

Europe PMC has a new provider of External Links: links from articles on Europe PMC to related content on 3rd party websites. Our most recent addition provides links from over 300,000 articles to entries in Wikipedia: the free encyclopaedia. For example, from the article ‘Spinal subdural abscess following epidural steroid injection’, you can link (via the External Links tab) to a Wikipedia entry about abscesses – though I don’t recommend trying this one if you’re at all squeamish! How about ‘ponesimod’? – it sounds like it could be some sort of insect, but is actually an experimental drug for the treatment of multiple sclerosis and psoriasis (linked from Europe PMC article ‘Mass balance, pharmacokinetics and metabolism of the selective S1P1 receptor modulator ponesimod in humans’).  You can find out more about Ebola virus disease via for example, ‘Ebola virus disease: an update for anesthesiologists and intensivists’. Actually ‘intensivist’* is the term that I hadn’t heard of in this instance – we should all be more aware of Ebola after the recent outbreak in West Africa.

Evan Lorne /

The terms linked to are many and varied. Research articles often assume a certain amount of knowledge on the part of the reader. The addition of links to Wikipedia entries provides further explanation of some terms that might not be explained in ‘lay’ terms in a research article. Europe PMC also supports lay explanation of research through the Access to Understanding science-writing competition where entrants produce plain-English summaries of selected research articles available from Europe PMC.

The technical bit
Several Wikipedia entries cite peer-reviewed research articles. Wikimedia has recently released a dataset of scholarly citations in the English Wikipedia, which are identified by PubMed or PMC ID (Halfaker, A., Taraborelli, D. (2015) Scholarly article citations in Wikipedia, Figshare, The dataset currently includes the first known occurrence of a PMID or PMCID citation in an English Wikipedia article and the associated revision metadata. We have used our External Links resource to publish links from articles in Europe PMC to those entries in Wikipedia that contain a PMID or PMCID citation.

The process for providing us with links is really straightforward and we provide step-by-step instructions and support – you don’t need to be a web developer to do this.

Help people discover your information. If you have some content that would enhance the articles in Europe PMC, then have a go!

*Intensivist: A physician who specializes in the care of critically ill patients, usually in an intensive care unit (ICU).

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