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Biomedical Sciences

Guide to quality biomedical and medical laboratory sciences information sources

Where to find that lab method...

Methods - Not always so simple

Lab techniques and methods can appear in a number of different places:

  • Journal articles
  • Specialized methods journals
  • Books
  • Methods book series
  • Websites
  • YouTube!

This guide page shows you ways of searching and finding them.

Video methods and protocols

Web sources

You can use Google to search for the many freely available protocols on the web.

Major sources of methods and protocols

1. Springer Nature Experiments

A database pooling the combined content (>50,000 items) from the journals Nature methods and Nature protocols along with the full contents of the Springer Protocols book series and a large set of open access items from Nature's Protocol Exchange

2. CAS Analytical Methods

A specialized search engine produced by ACS/CAS (Scifinder) with concise descriptions of thousands of chemical, biochemical and biological methods and includes links to the original published method. You will need to create a SciFinder account to use it.

3. Many scientific journals publish methods papers.

They can be found using standard databases such as Scopus, PubMed , SciFinder or MethodsNow (a specialized SciFinder methods platform).

Hint 1: Pubmed has a methods indexing term, so you just need to add methods[MeSH Subheading] to your other search terms retrieve these papers...

e.g. (methods[MeSH Subheading]) AND pcr

Hint 2: Scifinder will find methods papers if you simply include the word methods as one of your search terms

There are almost 100 journals at USC with "methods" in the title. Most of these are science, engineering  or bioscience journals.

Books and book series

There are many books about methods and protocols in the Library. Some are hard-copy books and others are ebooks. All can be found using the Library catalogue or a Discover search.

Just enter topic words plus "methods" or "protocols" as in the advanced search example below.

The Library holds various volumes of famous methods book series such as:

Methods in Enzymology and Methods in Molecular Biology

These can be found by using the Catalogue option and entering these titles into search box and choosing "is (exact)" from the drop-down options  in the illustration above.

The chapters of each of these titles are indexed in PubMed (and Scopus).

Some good basic biochemistry methods can be found in the  Techniques and Methodology chapters of Elsevier's online Encyclopedia of Biological Chemistry:

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