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J Med Syst. 2016 Aug;40(8):185. doi: 10.1007/s10916-016-0544-z. Epub 2016 Jun 18.

Using Literature-Based Discovery to Explain Adverse Drug Effects.

Author information

  • 1Institute for Biostatistics and Medical Informatics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia.
  • 2Faculty of Information Studies, Novo mesto, Ljubljana, Slovenia.
  • 3Faculty of Medicine, University of Maribor, Maribor, Slovenia.
  • 4INSERM UMRS 1138 Eq 22, Paris Descartes University, Georges Pompidou European Hospital, APHP, Paris, France.
  • 5Institute of Pharmacology and Experimental Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia.
  • 6National Library of Medicine, NIH, Bethesda, USA.


We report on our research in using literature-based discovery (LBD) to provide pharmacological and/or pharmacogenomic explanations for reported adverse drug effects. The goal of LBD is to generate novel and potentially useful hypotheses by analyzing the scientific literature and optionally some additional resources. Our assumption is that drugs have effects on some genes or proteins and that these genes or proteins are associated with the observed adverse effects. Therefore, by using LBD we try to find genes or proteins that link the drugs with the reported adverse effects. These genes or proteins can be used to provide insight into the processes causing the adverse effects. Initial results show that our method has the potential to assist in explaining reported adverse drug effects.


Adverse drug effects; Adverse drug reactions; Literature-based discovery; Pharmacogenomics; Pharmacovigilance; Text mining

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