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Drexel Library

New PubMed

Information about the new PubMed interface, to be released mid-May 2020.


The National Library of Medicine has announced that the new version of PubMed will become the default search platform on May 18, 2020.  The  "legacy" platform will remain available and continue to receive citation updates until September 30, 2020.

The new version has been available for approximately a year, with adjustments and improvements being made in response to user feedback. One of the most visible improvements is the responsive design of the new site. Responsive design means that the site can be used on any device - mobile, desktop, or tablet - with the same features and functionality. Previously, only a very basic version of PubMed was available on mobile. 


What is in PubMed? (Is it the same as MEDLINE?)

Like the current version, the new PubMed provides access to bibliographic information that includes MEDLINE, as well as:

  • The out-of-scope citations (e.g., articles on plate tectonics or astrophysics) from certain MEDLINE journals, primarily general science and chemistry journals, for which the life sciences articles are indexed for MEDLINE.
  • Citations that precede the date that a journal was selected for MEDLINE indexing.
  • Some additional life science journals that submit full text to PubMed Central and receive a qualitative review by NLM.
  • Citations for the NCBI Bookshelf collection.
  • In-process citations, which provide records for articles before those records are indexed with MeSH (medical  subject headings)

In other words, all MEDLINE citations can be found via PubMed, but PubMed searches may also include some non-MEDLINE articles.


Automatic Term Mapping has been augmented to include additional British and American spellings, singular and plural word forms, and other synonyms to provide more consistent and comprehensive search retrieval. To limit your search to the original term only, enclose the term in double quotes to disable Automatic Term Mapping, e.g., “color”. 

Truncated terms are no longer limited to the first 600 variations of a term. This will increase retrieval in cases of a truncated term with more than 600 variations. A wildcard search is only available for 4 characters or more. Use a root word of at least 4 characters to search for all endings.

Truncation no longer causes a phrase search. For example, in legacy PubMed: breast feed* would cause a phrase search. To search for a phrase including a truncated term in the new PubMed, use the following formats:

  • Enclose the phrase in double quotes: "breast feed*"
  • Use a search tag: breast feed*[tiab]
  • Use a hyphen: breast-feed* 

The truncated term must be the last word in the phrase.

MeSH Searching

MeSH (Medical Subject Heading) terms are included in the searches generated by the Automatic Term Mapping process, but you may find that more direct searching with MeSH terms and subheadings is more effective.

  • Access the MeSH database from the PubMed start page -- click on the logo from the results display or advanced search page to return to the start page.
  • Add selected terms and subheading to the Search Building, click "Search PubMed" to send through to results display page.
  • MeSH term searches will appear in the Search History on the Advanced Search page, where they can be combined with other search statements.

Advanced Search

The Advanced Search page allows you to:

  • Search for terms in a specific field (author, journal title, etc.)
  • Combine searches and build large, complex search strings,
  • See how each query was translated by PubMed (Details)
  • Download a CSV file of your search history and search details


The most popular filters are included on the sidebar by default. To display additional filters on the sidebar:

  1. Click the "Additional filters" button.
  2. A pop-up menu will appear showing the available filters for each category: article type, species, language, sex, subject, journal, and age.
  3. Choose a category from the list of options on the left side of the menu: Article Type, Species, etc.
  4. Within each category, select the filters you would like to add to the sidebar.
  5. Click Apply. This will close the pop-up menu and display your selections on the sidebar with the other filters.
  6. If you would like to cancel your selections, click Cancel or click on the X in the upper right corner to close the pop-up and return to your search results.*
  7. To apply the filter(s) to your search, click the filter(s) on the sidebar. 

More information about filters:

  • When filters are selected a "Filters applied" message will display on the results page.
  • Click an applied filter to turn it off. 
  • To turn off all applied filters, click the "Clear all" link or the "Reset all filters" button.
  • Citations may be excluded for some filter selections because they have not yet completed the MEDLINE indexing process.
  • You can also activate additional filters with My NCBI filters.

*Filter selections may stick across searches or even search sessions. When you're starting a new search, check to see if there are Filters still applied from a previous search, and clear them before starting.

Working with Results

There are several new features for managing, viewing and sharing results:

  • Search terms and terms matched from your search are highlighted in result abstracts
  • Display Options changes the results view from Summary to Abstract view, with sorting by "Best Match", most recent, or by publication date.
  • The Share icon provides links that you can share with Facebook, Twitter and other social media.
  • The  Cite icon generates AMA, MLA, APA  and NLM citations. You can also use the Cite icon to download a citation in .nbib  format for citation management software such as Endnote or Mendeley.
  • Cited by provides a list of articles in PMC that cite the article you're viewing.
  • The “Results by Year” graph in the upper left column of your results page provides a visualization of how publications on your topic increase or decrease over time, and can be used filter the results to selected years.

See our EndNote Desktop Import Tutorials for step-by-step illustration of downloading citations to EndNote. The process will be similar for downloading to other citation managers.

Integration with MyNCBI/Bibliography

The new version of PubMed is fully integrated with MyNCBI. Click on the Login button in the upper right corner of the PubMed screen.  When you are logged in, you will see your username instead of the login button.  The login screen provides three options:

  • Dashboard  connects to MyNCBI and the legacy dashboard display
  • Publications takes you to MyBibliography where you can view or create a list publications you have authored
  • Account Settings enables you to change your email address, password, and  NCBI defaults such as display or filtering preferences.

How to log on to MYNCBI using Drexel University Single Signon