Toxicology and Pharmacology Literature
This section provides tips for selecting resources and using a controlled vocabulary for searching toxicology and pharmacology information. For a general PubMed searching tutorial and a comprehensive list of suggested resources, see:
Before searching the journal literature, be familiar with the type of substance you have.
Knowing this in advance will help you decide which types of literature will be available for your topic. For example, you will find evidence about drug treatments in clinical trial and randomized controlled clinical trial literature; but the scope varies for studies about human effects of toxins and chemicals, see example.
Example Research Question -
What are the toxic effects of benzene on humans and its association with cancer?
What kinds of information can I find?
Drug a Poison?
A drug can become a poison if overdose occurs either by medication error, accidental overdose, or suicide. In the literature, "poison" or "toxicity" are available subheadings for MESH drug names, chemicals, and industrial materials for human or animal exposures. Drugs are indexed in MEDLINE by the generic drug name. Use Lexi-Comp drug look-up to find the generic name for the trade or brand name of a drug. Lexi-Comp
If searching for a chronic disease link to a particular chemical or drug, try using the subheading "adverse effects" - events occurring at the recommended dosage or threshold. This will find literature about adverse effects over long-term use of an exposure and may provide good information about chronic associations.
Some information obtained from NLM Toxicology Tutor I
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