CAB Thesaurus gets biggest update in 30 years
Press release, 3 August 2011
The CAB Thesaurus, the world’s most comprehensive controlled vocabulary covering applied life sciences and related subject areas, has had its biggest update in 30 years. In just one year the thesaurus has grown by 40% and now includes nearly 137,000 terms.
Containing the scientific names and synonyms for pest- and disease-causing organisms, birds, mammals, insects and other species and detailing the relationships between them, the thesaurus plays a vital role in ensuring the quality and consistency of all content produced by the applied life sciences publisher, CABI. It is also licensed by CABI to a wide variety of other organizations to categorize and index their own content.
Additions to the new edition include:
• 10,000 nematode species mentioned in CABI online databases (http://www.cabdirect.org/)
• World lists of birds, mammals, sucking lice (Anoplura) and trichodectid chewing lice (Mallophaga), with synonyms
• Complete revisions to the existing taxonomic hierarchies in the thesaurus of dinoflagellates and algae
• 7275 new insect species from the Medani database, which contains species of veterinary and medical importance
“All the new terms have been thoroughly checked and verified by scientifically qualified editors,” said Dr Anton Doroszenko, CABI’s thesaurus manager.
“It took one editor 20 months to check around 10,000 individual new names of nematodes, which are free-living and parasitic worms that are very important in veterinary, medical and plant pathological contexts. Checking all these names was quite a feat since there is no one comprehensive nematode resource: a vast number of primary literature sources and the Internet had to be consulted. But we had to get it right for ourselves and our customers.”
It is projected that the CAB Thesaurus will double in size in the next five years, and several innovations will be introduced to make the thesaurus much more than just a controlled vocabulary. The most important of these will be to include semantic features into the thesaurus to make it fit for new CABI products and for wider use as part of the Semantic Web.
The CAB Thesaurus is available in English, Spanish and Portuguese, and is currently being translated in its entirety into Farsi.