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Updates from Europe PMC, a global database of life sciences literature

Europe PMC team

 | 24 June 2015


IRIS, educated – more accurately, populated…

“Education doesn’t make you happy. And what is freedom?
We don’t become happy just because we are free, if we are. Or because we have
been educated, if we have. But because education may be the means by which we
realize we are happy. It opens our eyes, our ears. Tells use where delights are
lurking. Convinces us that there is only one freedom of any importance
whatsoever: that of the mind. And give us the assurance, the confidence, to
walk the path our mind, our educated mind, offers.”

(Iris Murdoch)
Added in September 2014, Europe PMC’s RESTful Web Service has a Dublin Core response, complementing existing XML and JSONformats. The new response is compliant with the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative (DCMI), which
supports shared innovation in metadata design and best practices across a broad
range of purposes and business models. For many organisations this format is
the most acceptable way to exchange article metadata, and for this reason we
wanted to implement the response in our service.

Earlier this year the World Health Organization (WHO), a Europe PMC funder, made use of the
service’s Dublin Core format to populate their DSpace Institutional Repository
for Information Sharing (IRIS – hence
the only slightly tangential quote by Iris Murdoch!).

In case you haven’t already had enough of spurious references to Irises…
Elena Larina /

IRIS provides free
access to public health-related knowledge. This includes information produced
directly by WHO, as well as WHO-authored articles that have been published in peer-reviewed scientific journals
 – the latter
collection is provided to IRIS via Europe PMC’s RESTful Web Service, and now
numbers in the region of 1800 records
metadata  and open access PDF
full text files, on topics ranging from ‘Effect of high-dose or split-dose artesunate
on parasite clearance in artemisinin-resistant falciparum malaria’ to
‘Distribution of yellow fever vectors in Northwestern and Western Provinces, Zambia’.

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Europe PMC is a service of the Europe PMC Funders' Group, in partnership with EMBL’s European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI); and in cooperation with the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) at the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NCBI/NLM) . It includes content provided to the PubMed Central (NLM/PMC) archive by participating publishers.