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Research Guides@Tufts

EBVM Search Guide: Medline vs. CAB Abstracts

Resources to support database searching.

MEDLINE

Description

  • MEDLINE indexes literature in the fields of medicine, nursing, dentistry, veterinary medicine, health care system, and preclinical sciences.
  • Increased coverage of life sciences began in 2000 and includes aspects of biology, environmental science, marine biology, plant and animal science as well as biophysics and chemistry.
  • MEDLINE is produced by the U.S. National Library of Medicine and is the primary component of PubMed.

Coverage

  • 1946-present; over 24 million citation
  • add 2,000-4,000 new citations each day
  • add 750,000+ new citations each year

Journals

  • index more than 5,600 biomedical journals published in the United States and 80 other countries
  • includes citations in 40 languages

Content

  • bibliographic citations, author abstracts and links to full text content
  • majority of the publications indexed are scholarly journals; a small number of newspapers, magazines, and newsletters are also included
  • from 2010-present, 93% are published in English and 84% have English abstracts written by the author

Thesaurus

  • uses NLM’s Medical Subject Headings (MeSH)

 

CAB Abstracts

Description

  • CAB Abstracts indexes literature in the fields of agriculture, forestry, aspects of human health, human nutrition, animal health, management and conservation of natural resources, and other aspects of pure science relating to organisms of agricultural, veterinary or environmental importance.
  • CAB Abstracts is produced by CABI Publishing, a division of CAB International, Wallingford, UK.

Coverage

  • 1910-1972; 1.86 million citations
  • 1973-present; over 8.8 million citations
  • add 360,000+ new citations each year

Journals

  • index more than 8,000 journals published in the United States and 116 other countries
  • includes citations in 50 languages

Content

  • bibliographic citations, author abstracts and links to full text content
  • majority of the publications indexed are academic journals; a small number of other serials, books, grey literature and conference proceedings are also included
  • 95% of citations include an abstract
  • 95% of foreign language citations include an English abstract

Thesaurus

  • uses CAB Thesaurus
  • subject headings come from the CAB Thesaurus

Search Notes

  • Subjects are controlled and specific to a database.
  • Searching for "subjects" removes the need to think of words, phrases or the spelling the author may have used.
  • MeSH uses American spellings and inverted word orders (ex: anesthesia, local; ethics, professional).
  • CAB Thesaurus uses English spellings and does not invert the word order (ex: local anaesthesia; professional ethics).
  • Terms in MeSH may not exist in the CAB Thesaurus and vice versa (ex: eye neoplasms – MeSH only; multibacillary leprosy – CAB only).
  • Combine keywords and subject headings for a more thorough search.
  • use Boolean Operators (and, or, not)
  • Use parentheses when combining multiple Boolean operators... ex:  (A and B) not (C or D).