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August 30, 2004

Biobar - Tool for Mozilla-Based Web Browsers

(This is a copy of an email sent to the Biotech faculty at UIUC. If you didn't get it, and want me to add you to my list, let me know! KC)

Biotech / Molecular biology researchers at UIUC --
Recently I came upon this useful "extension" to Mozilla-based browsers that you can install on your computer if you're using FireFox or Netscape 7+. It may ease your searching of PubMed or many of the bioinformatics databases such as NCBI's Genbank or Homologene, the EMBL databases, or the DDBJ databases. Once you install it, you'll see a new toolbar appear in your browser window.

Here's the blurb from the site:
Biobar - A toolbar for browsing biological data and databases.
The biobar project is a bioinformatics power-browsing toolbar for Mozilla-based browsers including Firefox and Netscape 7+. This toolbar provides access to all major biological data resources. The primary advantage of this tool is that it allows a biologist to browse and retrieve data from Genomic, Proteomic, Functional, Literature, Taxonomic, Structural, Plant and Animal-specific databases. In addition to the browsing features, biobar also provides links to important bioinformatics sites and services including services at the European Bioinformatics Institute (EBI), National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) and DNA Data Bank of Japan (DDBJ). The tool also provides links to major data deposition sites for nucleotide, protein and 3D-structure data. Finally, the menu also contains links to many Sequence, Structure alignment and analysis tools. Here is a list of the databases accessible from Biobar:

Read more and download this handy toolbar, Biobar, from:

The developer of Biobar is Jawahar Swaminathan, a curator of the EBI Macromolecular Structure Database.

If you install Biobar, you'll want to customize it so you're seeing the UIUC version of Pubmed -- that is, the version that shows which subscriptions we have access to. To do this, click on the first dropdown menu on the Biobar, choose "options", then click on NCBI. Set your "library linkout abbreviation" to: uiuclib.

If you're accessing Pubmed from off-campus, you'll still want to use the Library's URL for PubMed, so that the e-journal articles are proxied, recognizing you as a UIUC researcher! The pre-proxied URL for PubMed is:

Biobar is merely passing your search queries to the native interface for the various databases. So use the same search syntax as you would if you were searching the native search engines!
Questions? Send me an email and I'll try to help!

Posted by at August 30, 2004 10:06 AM