PDQ® Cancer Information Summaries

The National Cancer Institute‘s PDQ® (Physician Data Query) cancer information summaries are “peer-reviewed, evidence-based summaries on topics including adult and pediatric cancer treatment, supportive and palliative care, screening, prevention, genetics, and complementary and alternative medicine.” Versions specifically customized for both patients and health professionals are freely-available for every topic and can be accessed via PubMed or via the NCBI Bookshelf.

The range of topics available is quite extensive, with the Treatment section even including a recently updated PDQ® on Financial Toxicity, a topic both patients and health professionals could benefit from knowing more about – for example, see:

PDQ Adult Treatment Editorial Board. Financial Toxicity (Financial Distress) and Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Patient Version. 2019 Jul 3. PDQ Cancer Information Summaries [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Cancer Institute (US); 2002-. Available from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK441635/   PubMed PMID: 28682576.

To find out more about the development and impact of the PDQ® series, be sure to read this article:

Manrow RE, Beckwith M, Johnson LE. NCI’s Physician Data Query (PDQ®) cancer information summaries: history, editorial processes, influence, and reach. J Cancer Educ. 2014 Mar;29(1):198-205. doi: 10.1007/s13187-013-0536-3. PubMed PMID: 23996204.

Questions? Ask Us!

Conflict of Interest Statement Field in PubMed

In 2017, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) introduced a new field, Conflict of Interest Statement [COIS], into the PubMed record to accommodate the conflict of interest statement from the published article (i.e., as provided by the publisher) being indexed.

The information generally appears in this format (example from NLM):

COIS – [The author] has been paid for developing and delivering educational presentations for [foundation].

COIS – The author acknowledges the donation of [devices] from [company] for the pilot study.


To retrieve all citations that contain conflict of interest statements, you can use the PubMed query hascois, for example:

(hascois) AND sloan kettering[Affiliation]

The PubMed search can also be restricted to looking only at the content in this field (i.e., field searching in COIS) via the Advanced Search option, for example:

Novartis[Conflict of Interest Statements]

To learn more, be sure to check out the MSK Library’s LibGuide focused on Conflict of Interest (COI) or Ask Us!

Check for Updates with CrossMark

You may have noticed that many journal publishers now include a CrossMark icon near the journal title of online articles and their PDF versions. For an example, see:

Paraskevaidi M, Martin-Hirsch PL, Martin FL. Need for early, minimally invasive cancer diagnosis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2019 Mar 12;116(11):4752.
doi: 10.1073/pnas.1817551116. Epub 2019 Feb 19. PubMed PMID: 30782793; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6421421, in HTML and PDF.

By clicking on the CrossMark icon, readers can immediately determine whether or not they are viewing the most up-to-date version of the article, whether updates exist, whether this article has had supplementary data added, has been corrected or retracted, etc. It basically “provides a standard way for readers to locate the authoritative version of a document”, as per one of the participating publishers.

CrossMark is an initiative of CrossRef, a not-for-profit membership organization that creates meta-data in order to make “research outputs easy to find, cite, link, and assess”. Participating member publishers pay a fee to incorporate CrossMark into their journals.

To learn more about CrossMark, please see this CrossRef-produced handout and short video (1:41).