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CHEM5510: Drug Discovery and Medicinal Chemistry


6. Find Related Material

Search Topic

Drug example: ropinirole, a former "top 200" small molecule drug  2D structure of ropinirole hydrochloride

Citation Searching

In theory, authors cite an item because it is relevant to the topic of their own work. PubMed and SciFindern provide a means to easily trace both citing items (written after an article is published) and cited items (the bibliography or references list from the article itself).

Unfortunately, these features are not fully implemented for older articles. You may need to peruse an article to identify promising references, then manually enter each item into PubMed, SciFindern, and/or the BC Libraries catalog to access the text. The original and best-known database for citation searching is Web of Science.

Web of Science retrieves more citations for this article than SciFindern does

Web of Science SciFindern
2017 article, cited 13 times in Web of Science. Citation link circled in red. Same 2017 article, cited only 13 times in SciFinder-n. Citation links circled in red.


  • Each library database covers a different range of journals, and citation search results will be limited to that collection of journals
  • Because there are many ways to incorrectly cite an article, a citation search is never 100% complete
  • Sometimes authors cite research to discuss problems with methods and/or conclusions
  • Social factors affect citation counts

Search for PMID 4045928 in PubMed. Click on the result, and click See all "Cited by" articles. How many articles, indexed by PubMed, cited this paper?

In Scifindern, use the pull-down menus in two Advanced Search boxes to search Author Name gallagher AND Title prejunctional. Find the reference to the same article. How many articles, indexed by Scifindern, cited this paper?

Errata and Retractions

Errata, notices of correction, and retractions alert readers to problems with a previously published article. Problems may range from minor proofreading errors to serious ethical breaches like plagiarism or falsified data.

PubMed records include general notes about these problems and a citation to the published alert. In SciFindern it's difficult to find this information.

Examine the PubMed record for the Gallagher et al. article. Find the note about an erratum in this article. Examine the Scifindern record for the same article. What does Scifindern tell you about the error?

The error in the original publication by Gallagher et al. was omission of third author Charles A. Webster and his institutional affiliation of FMC Corporation. What were some potential consequences of this omission for Webster and/or his organization?