Columbia University

Technology Ventures

Bioscience Images Accessed Via Article Abstracts

Technology #proxy5

“Lead Inventor: Hong Yu, Ph.D.

Bioscience Visual Data Essential for Research:
There exists a plethora of electronic search and retrieval tools to facilitate navigation of various information systems currently used to store and disseminate biological scientific data (e.g. publications, gene and peptide data, and molecular interaction data). Most of these tools only target textual information while ignoring other data such as images. Given the immense importance of visual data in experimental research, biologists often need to search for and access images rather than the accompanying text. Although some journals list the images that appear in an article along with annotations, they limit the latter to image captions. Moreover, these image lists also do not show any connections between related images.

Bioscience Images Imbedded in Scientific Article:
The technology is a novel user interface for accessing images in a scientific article directly from sentences in the article’s abstract. It capitalizes upon the hypothesis (empirically supported by the inventors' experiments) that the images in a full-text biological research article can be summarized by sentences in the article’s abstract. This technology uses hierarchical clustering algorithms to automatically identify abstract sentences describing images in the paper.

Applications:
• Facilitates the direct accessing of images in scientific articles
• Eliminates the need to read an entire article in order to access specific images of interestv
Advantages:
• Unlike existing services such as SummaryPlus that only list an article’s images and their captions, BioEx connects sentences in an article’s abstract with images.
• Connecting abstract sentences with associated images assists researchers in confirming the strength and/or validity of the claims made in the abstract.


Patent Status: Patent Pending (US 12/139,267) ~ see link below.

Licensing Status: Available for Sponsored Research Support

Publications: Accessing bioscience images from abstract sentences, Journal of Bioinformatics, Vol. 22, No. 14, Jul. 2006, pp. 547-556.