Contract awarded to run open-access research library
29 July 2011
The European Molecular Biology Laboratory’s European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) has been awarded the contract to run and lead the development of UK PubMed Central (UKPMC), the free online literature resource for life science researchers which is part-funded by the Medical Research Council (MRC).
Now five years old, UKPMC provides access to a library of more than two million full-text biomedical research articles, more than 25 million citations from PubMed and Agricola, patents from the European Patent Office, UK treatment guidelines and biomedical PhD theses. Biomedical literature can be found using integrated full text and abstract searches. More than 250,000 articles are published under open-access licences, which mean their contents can be freely reused.
The UK funding organisations that support UKPMC wish to build upon this success through a new five-year contract awarded to EMBL-EBI, who will lead the development of the service in partnership with the University of Manchester and the British Library. The goal is to build a gold-standard digital library for biomedical literature that benefits life science researchers throughout the world.
Dr Johanna McEntyre, Head of Literature Services at EMBL-EBI, said:
"We want to help researchers make the best possible use of the scientific literature by building deep content links between articles and the underlying data. If we manage that, UKPMC will give people a chance to navigate the biomedical information space in an intuitive way."
The service will be funded by a significantly expanded group of funding organisations. Eight funders launched the service in 2007; the new contract sees the participation of 18 UK and European funders, of which the MRC is the second largest contributor. Dr Tony Peatfield, MRC director of corporate affairs, currently chairs the Funders’ Group.
Dr Peatfield said:
“The Medical Research Council is committed to supporting UKPMC, which broadens the range of opportunities for quality research to be widely communicated and freely accessed. Over its first five years, the project has proven very successful and UKPMC has become a very valuable resource for accessing research publications and related information free of charge. We hope in the next stage to see an expansion of the service to include partners across Europe, as well as further advances in the capability of the resource.”
Over the next five years, UKPMC funders will continue to seek the involvement of scientific publishers as well as a broad range of funding agencies, universities and other research institutions to better serve research communities throughout Europe and beyond.
The UKPMC Funders’ Group comprises the following funding organisations: Action on Hearing Loss; Arthritis Research UK; Austrian Science Fund (FWF); Biotechnology and Biosciences Research Council; Breakthrough Breast Cancer; British Heart Foundation; Cancer Research UK; The Chief Scientist Office of the Scottish Government Health Directorates; The Dunhill Medical Trust; Marie Curie Cancer Care; Medical Research Council; the Motor Neurone Disease Association; the Multiple Sclerosis Society; Myrovlytis Trust; National Institute for Health Research (Department of Health); Parkinson's UK; Telethon (Italy) and the Wellcome Trust.
More information about UKPMC can be found here.
- Ends -