SLA Biomedical and Life Sciences Division

2007 News

December 21, 2007
From PEER: "Washington, DC Buried within the omnibus appropriations bill Congress sent this week to President Bush is a Christmas present for the beleaguered library network of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Congress ordered EPA to restore library services across the country and earmarked $3 million for that purpose, according to Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER)."

See the whole article at:
December 20, 2007
Bruce Alberts Is the New Editor-in-chief of Science
The board of directors of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) announced yesterday that Bruce Alberts, a prominent cell biologist will take over as editor-in-chief of Science magazine, effective March 1, 2008. Read more at
December 18, 2007
Big problems with ISI data reported by science editors
A report by editors from the Journal of Cell Biology and the Journal of Experimental Medicine who have joined with the Executive Director of the Rockefeller University Press in reporting their inability to verify published impact factors using data provided provided by ISI itself.

While critiques of the use of impact factors are quite common, this is the first serious question raised about the underlying validity of the data used to calculate impact factors and therefore the accurracy of the metrics that are published.

The editorial by Mike Rossner, Heather Van Epps, and Emma Hill was published in the Journal of Cell Biology and is available at
December 16, 2007
New ESI (Engineering and Science Informatics) email list
This list is meant to provide a place for discussion of Engineering and Science data management issues for anyone, including librarians and scientific data managers working with the burgeoning mass of digital data coming out of the engineering and science research communities. This includes, but is not limited to, preliminary audits, pilot projects, planning for data management, the creation of standards and workflows, use of new and old technologies, the social aspects of data sharing, and moving data into a system in which it can be preserved and reused. To subscribe to the list, send a message to with "subscribe" (no quotes) in the body of the message. Leave the subject line blank.
December 11, 2007
MoMA Store - Framed DNA Print
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) offers a modern spin on the traditional personal portrait, a unique DNA genetic fingerprint custom printed as a Giclee in your choice of one of nine different color palettes. A kit is provided to collect a painless saliva sample using a cotton-tip swab, which is sent to a secure certified lab for processing. Can also be used to create a print from your child or pet's DNA.
November 30, 2007
News From The Library of Congress
Working group on the future of bibliographic control releases draft report

The Working Group on the Future of Bibliographic Control has released its draft report on the future of bibliographic description in light of advances in search engine technology, the popularity of the Internet and the influx of electronic information resources.

The group's five general recommendations, available at its Web site at , emphasized the role of the Library of Congress not as a sole supplier, but rather as an important leader in the cataloging world.
November 27, 2007
IMLS publishes FY06 state library report
The Institute of Museum and Library Services has issued its first library statistics report on state library agencies in the 50 states and the District of Columbia for state fiscal year 2006.

The report is available at:
It includes a wide array of information on topics such as libraries' internet access, services, collections, staff, and revenue, and is used by state and federal policymakers, researchers, and others.
November 16, 2007
Robot Cockroach Tests Insect Decision-Making Behavior
Robot cockroaches coated with pheromones are so well accepted by the household pests that the robots become part of the insects' collective decision-making process, researchers report in the week's issue of Science 318 (5853): 1155, November 16 2007
November 16, 2007
Best Places to Work 2007 Academia, from the November 2007 issue of The Scientist
The Scientist has created a site on the best places to work in academia, with links to several related articles. For the first time since 2004, peer relations were ranked more important than tenure, and in the US, researchers ranked research resources the third most important factor in a workplace.
November 6, 2007
Victory in the Senate: Update on the bill to mandate open access at the NIH
From SPARC Open Access Newsletter, issue #115 November 2, 2007 by Peter Suber.

..For the first time ever, the Senate voted to demand an OA mandate at the NIH. Because the House of Representatives adopted the same language in July, this is also the first time ever that both houses of Congress have demanded an OA mandate at the NIH...
November 6, 2007
SLA Biomedical and life sciences 2007 ballot
Balloting will be open through Wednesday, Nov 21, 2007 at 5:00 PM Pacific Standard Time.
This ballot provides voting for new SLA DBIO officers for Chair-Elect, Director and Secretary.

The link for the ballot is given below. Simply connect to this Survey Monkey link and complete the ballot as directed.
You may vote for one person per position or write-in an individual of your choice.
November 1, 2007
New OCLC Report is released
OCLC has just released the 3rd in a series of research reports that scan the information landscape. The new report is "Sharing, Privacy and Trust in Our Networked World" and can be found on the OCLC web site at:
October 26, 2007
Web Resources on California Wildfires from the National Library of Medicine (NLM)
The National Library of Medicine has released a new resource focused on the health effects from wildfires (

The California Wildfires Web page includes information on the health effects from fires and exposure to smoke; links to air quality resources, environmental clean-up following fires, and animals in disasters. In addition, resources for emergency responders and information in Spanish are included. Searches of NLM databases, such as MedlinePlus, PubMed, TOXLINE, Tox Town, and Haz-Map (occupational health) are included for additional health information.

The page also provides the locations of facilities reporting to the EPA Toxics Release Inventory and Superfund sites in and around San Diego (TOXMAP).

This web page is designed to help emergency responders, health care providers, public health workers, and the general public find authoritative and timely information about key health concerns from wildfires. Links to other federal government web sites, including, FEMA, and the Department of Health and Human Services are included..

October 22, 2007
Libraries Shun Deals to Place Books on Web
Libraries make it to the first page of the New York Times, with this article .

"Several major research libraries have rebuffed offers from Google and Microsoft to scan their books into computer databases, saying they are put off by restrictions these companies want to place on the new digital collections."
October 16, 2007
Fred Stoss. 2007. "Convenient Resources for 'An Inconvenient Truth.'"
The Electronic Green Journal, Issue #25: (free log-in registration, go to issue, then to article). This article looks at resources supporting information presented in Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth," by providing several lists of ten.

This is NOT a comprehensive inventory, just some suggestions.
October 3, 2007
3-day Course on "Introduction to Molecular Biology Information Resources"
The schedule, locations, and registration for this 3-day course, "Introduction to Molecular Biology Information Resources," ( for 2007-2008, can be found at
September 21, 2007

GMR Sponsoring MLA Webcast Sites for Scholarly Publishing and Open Access

From GMR : The GMR is offering sponsorship of webcast sites for the upcoming MLA Webcast: Scholarly Publishing and Open Access: Straight Talk to be held on November 20, 2007.

Visit for detailed information on how to become a sponsored site.

The GMR will coverregistration costs for up to two (2) sites per state in the region for this webcast. Because of the limited number of sites we can sponsor, we encourage you to work with your state and local health science librarian groups to identify centralized locations. Sites will be selected based on geographical location, accessibility, and potential number of attendees. To find out about this exciting webcast by visit:

The deadline to get your registration and information to the GMR is Friday, October 12, 2007.

September 17, 2007
New look for BioMed Central journal articles
From the BioMed Central Blog: BioMed Central's article web pages have been redesigned with a new look which adds significant new functionality. Among the new features, articles can easily be posted to sites including Cite-U-Like, Connotea and Facebook, using links conveniently placed at the foot of a new navigation box.
September 5 , 2007
Call for Posters!
The SLA Biomedical and Life Sciences Division invites submissions for its annual Contributed Posters Session at the Seattle Conference in June 15-18, 2008.
August 22, 2007
SPARC Open Access Newsletter
The newest issue of the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) Open Access Newsletter , issue #113 is now online It includes an article on whether open access will undermine peer review..
August 22, 2007
Call for Contributed Papers!
The SLA Biomedical and Life Sciences Division invites submissions for its annual Contributed Papers Session at the Seattle Conference in June 15-18, 2008.
August 15, 2007
Don't miss our new issue of Biofeedback!
Susan Kendall, Editor and Buzz Haughton, Associate Editor are pleased to announce that the Summer 2007 issue of Biofeedback, has been posted. There are some interesting reports about many of the programs we sponsored in Denver. As usual you'll also find book reviews, information about our members' achievements and awards, and reports from our liaisons officers. Please contact us with any feedback you may have about the newsletter or if you are interested in writing an article for it. If you wish to be notified whenever a new issue of our newsletter is published, please join our DBIO Email list.
August 1, 2007
3D model of Great White shark bite force being created
An Australian-led team of scientists is building a three dimensional computer model to test the bite force of the Great White shark. The researchers, led by Stephen Wroe of the University of New South Wales, are using data from a 7.8-foot-long shark caught in beach nets off the New South Wales central coast to analyze its jaw and facial muscles. The collaborative project that also involves the University of Newcastle, as well as the U.S. University of Tampa, aims to reveal the cranial mechanics, bite force and feeding behavior of the Great White Shark using high resolution 3-D computer simulations. (UPI)
July 24, 2007
Daniel E. Koshland Jr., former editor-in-chief of Science, dies at age 87
Daniel E. Koshland Jr., former editor-in-chief of Science, has died at the age of 87. An award-winning biochemist who served as editor-in-chief from 1985-1995 of Science, Koshland "implemented truly ground-breaking improvements to the peer-review process, editorial content, technology-based production, staffing, and more," said Science Executive Editor Monica Bradford. "All of those developments helped to solidify the journal's place as one of the most prestigious scholarly publications in the world. We are deeply saddened by his death, and we extend our deepest sympathies to his family."

Koshland was born in New York City, but his family later moved West. He received his bachelor's degree in chemistry in 1941 at the University of California-Berkeley. During World War II, he led a group working to purify plutonium as part of the Manhattan Project, which developed the world's first nuclear weapon. He earned a Ph.D. in chemistry at the University of Chicago in 1949. After working at Brookhaven National Laboratory and Rockefeller University, he returned to Berkeley in 1965 to head the Department of Biochemistry and on the Chancellor's Advisory Council on Biology. Koshland's own early work on "induced fit" theory had met a mixed response, and in his work at Science, he maintained a strong conviction that important research is often controversial-but worth the editors' efforts. He won the prestigious Albert Lasker Award for Special Achievement in Medical The tribute to this eminent scientist can be found at:
July 13 - August 31, 2007
Some services will be temporarily unavailable this month
SLA is installing a new association management database system. Work on the system will continue through August 31, 2007. During this time, you will be unable to access some online services, such as renewing your membership, editing your Association profile, or joining SLA through the Association Web site.
June 19, 2007
Botany journal to waive certain submission fees
The Journal of Experimental Botany, an Oxford University Press hybrid journal, will be waiving submission fees for authors who work at an institution that has a current subscription to this journal.
June 18, 2007
Final attendance figures are in for this year's SLA conference
Exhibition and attendance figures for the Special Libraries Association's (SLA) annual conference and INFO-EXPO held in Denver, Colorado 3 - 6, June exceeded planners' expectations and included, for the first time, SLA members from every chapter around the globe. Final attendance figures for SLA 2007 totaled 5,047 individuals from around the globe representing 41 nations. Of that number, 813 participants were first-time SLA conference participants. SLA's INFO-EXPO, the largest information and knowledge management exposition in North America, was sold out this year and featured 275 companies and organizations and 445 total booths. SLA welcomed 38 new exhibitors.
June 15, 2007
2008 SLA Conference theme and keynote speaker announced
Next year's Annual Conference and INFO- EXPO will take place 15-18 June, 2008, in Seattle, Washington, USA. The theme for the event will be "Breaking Rules, Building Bridges" and feature a keynote address from Seth Godin, well known blogger and author of a number of books including Small is the Next Big, Purple Cow, and Unleashing the Ideavirus.
June 12, 2007
DBIO contributed papers available online
The DBIO contributed papers and other presentations from the 2007 SLA Annual conference are now available.
May 23, 2007
Conference preview
May 9, 2007
SLA continues dialogue with EPA on library closures
In a continuation of the dialogue between the SLA and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), officials from both organizations met on Monday in an effort to clarify recent media reports that libraries were closing and materials discarded within the EPA's regional library network. Read the entire press release.
April 30, 2007
Poster Session presenters announced
We have selected the presenters for the Poster Session sponsored by the Biomedical and Life Sciences Division at the SLA Annual meeting in Denver. A list of the presenters and the titles and abstracts of their presentations can be found here.

Eleanor MacLean, Moderator
Scott Reece, Assistant Moderator
Biomedical and Life Sciences Poster Session
April 24, 2007
Reminder to sign up for continuing education courses
Don't forget to sign up for one of the CE courses sponsored, or co-sponsored, at this year's SLA Annual Conference in June:

Graduate School in the Basic Biomedical Sciences
This course introduces participants to the training and activities of basic biomedical science researchers. The scientific method, nature of "research", and models of graduate programs will be addressed. Basic science disciplines (e.g. molecular biology, biochemistry, genetics, etc.), model organisms, and clinically-relevant technologies will be described. Ph.D. and M.D. training programs will be compared and contrasted. Attendees will explore the role that special libraries and librarians have in serving the needs of such researchers.
Ticket Number 110

Pharmacovigilance: Online Resources and Strategies for Monitoring Adverse Events
This course will provide practical examples on online strategies designed for systematic surveillance of the published literature, exploring terms and techniques that take advantage of special database indexing features to answer typical-and not so typical-adverse event inquiries. Government regulatory requirements will also be reviewed, along with applications and implications of free Web sources that compile product safety reports already submitted through official surveillance programs in Europe, Canada and the United States.
Ticket Number 380

Systems Thinking and Risk Management
Information and knowledge transfer professionals can play a key role in minimizing uninformed decision making that can result in risks to the organization and to their own services. Assessing the role of information services and how these services can be leveraged to identify, analyze and mitigate risk is a primary value that information professionals can bring to their organizations Understanding the process for identifying or minimizing these risks and articulating them appropriately through the use of systems diagramming and other tools can help elevate the library professional to a strategic role in the organization and situate the information center's services as strategic tools.
Ticket Number 455
April 23, 2007
Conference tip
"Making an impact at meetings where you don't know anyone" (BMJ Career Focus 2005;330:179)

Claudia Lascar
DBIO Public Relations Chair
April 23, 2007
Annual Conference: Tips for Success (or Survival)
Whether it's your first SLA Annual Conference or your fortieth, the following sites are worth a look. They're loaded with information on how to have a successful Annual Conference experience and enjoy it at the same time:

SLA: Getting the Most out of SLA 2007
SirsiDynix: Conference Tips
The Rocky Mountain Chapter has also created a helpful Denver Wiki.

A few more tips for new members, students, and first-time attendees:
You can make it through much of the conference without paying for dinner by "dining" at receptions and open houses. This, however, works best for people who are not on low-fat, low-sodium, high-fiber, or other types of eating programs.

Street hustlers are very good at identifying conference attendees, even when we don't have our badges and bags. If there really is an incredible deal on parking, dining, etc. it's going to get posted on the wiki or the conference listserve, not revealed by someone wandering around on the street. Also, no matter how sad or convincing some stranger's tale of woe, the best response to requests for money is no response. If you feel you must respond, a polite refusal is sufficient. You are an information specialist, not a Denver police officer or social worker. Some sessions will overflow their alloted seating. If you don't want to risk standing through an entire session, or sitting on the floor, try to arrive early.

Usually you will receive a tote bag or messenger bag when you pick up your Final Program at the conference site. These are great for carrying around vendor handouts and office supplies, but hard to distinguish from the literally thousands of similar bags people are carrying around at the meeting. Bring along ribbon (or something else) to uniquely identify your bag, or perhaps even bring your own bag/backpack/etc.

Denver's climate and altitude could be a surprise for those of us from lower and more humid areas. Pat Wagner has some useful tips on "Visiting Denver and Colorado for conferences."

However, Jack Marshall Maness has noted on another SLA list "because we have a dry climate and a burgeoning population, we also face rather significant water-shortage issues that have been compounded by below average precipitation in recent years...I would hate to think of hundreds of bathtubs being filled every night for non-essential purposes! I think Pat's other recommendations should prove more than sufficient for most."

See you in Denver,
Nancy R. Curtis
DBIO Membership Chair
April 11, 2007
SLA begins planning for 2009 centennial
President Appoints Commission to Oversee 100-year Anniversary, Invites SLA Members to Participate in Creating Framework for Year-long Celebration

2009 marks the 100-year anniversary of the founding of the Special Libraries Association by John Cotton Dana in 1909, as a professional association dedicated to serving the needs and interests of professionals who handle specialized information and research services. Today SLA announces the creation of the SLA Centennial Commission and asks its 11,500 members to send ideas and thoughts on how to best celebrate its 100 year anniversary to the Commission via the email address
March 8, 2007
DBIO selects firm to redesign Web site
The Biomedical & Life Sciences Division has engaged David Matthews from Ink Stain Design in London, Ontario, to redesign our existing website. The project will be completed within the next five months.

The selection was done by the DBIO Board with assistance from the DBIO Ad-Hoc Website Redesign Committee. The Website Redesign Committee comprised of Claudia Lascar (Chair), Dorothy Barr, Alexa Hackbarth, Deanna Johnson, Chris Hooper-Lane (represents the Medical Section), Carol Lepzelter Berry (Webmaster), Meris Mandernach, and Jennifer Rojas, rigorously selected David Matthews among twenty qualified candidates.

David Matthews’s wife, Amy, has recently earned her MLIS degree and came across our RFP through the SLA Toronto Chapter’s listserv.
March 1, 2007
2008 SLA Conference scheduling change
The SLA announced today that the 2008 SLA Annual Conference and INFO EXPO will be held 14-17 June in 2008 in Seattle, Washington. This is a change to the original scheduled date of 27-30 July, 2008. See this press release for more details.
February 27, 2007
Preliminary DBIO Denver program guide released
In preparation for the 2007 SLA Annual Conference, we have released the Preliminary Biomedical and Life Sciences Division 2007 Denver Program Guide.
February 12, 2007
RSVP required for Denver lunch invitation
Are you planning to attend the Denver SLA Annual Conference? Did you join the Biomedical and Life Sciences Division in 2006 or 2007, or are you a student member of SLA?

If so, the Biomedical and Life Sciences Division invites you to a free Science Divisions Newcomers Luncheon, on Sunday, June 3, from noon to about 1:30 p.m. Representatives from each sponsoring Division (ours, Science-Technology, and Chemistry) will be there to meet you, answer any questions you have about the Division, give you tips on navigating the conference, and describe how to get the most out of your SLA membership. It's a great opportunity to meet other new members, students, and "first-timers" attending the Denver meeting.

Please RSVP by Friday, March 9 to Nancy Curtis

Rev. March 2008