CAB Thesaurus 2018 edition published (with 2.8 million total terms)

The 2018 edition of CAB Thesaurus, the leading life sciences thesaurus, was signed off, on schedule, on Friday, 29th June, and is now available on the thesaurus web site. A detailed report on the new edition compared with last year's edition is available there, but here are some highlights.

  • Total terms, in all languages combined, is approaching 2.8 million, - 2,775,794 to be exact
  • 35,940 terms were updated
  • 11,518 terms were added in English
  • Revisions of 52 dicot plant families were completed down to species level
  • 5201 new translations were added from English, including 2805 into German, 1063 into French, 567 into Spanish, 447 into Portuguese, and 304 into Dutch
  • All relationships and category codes were translated into French and Portuguese - previously we had these in Dutch, English, German and Spanish - and thus all headings are in the language chosen when browsing the thesaurus
  • Portuguese, Spanish and Dutch have >90% terms translated from English, and German is catching up fast with 86.4%
  • A category code for natural processes was added and 923 terms were labelled as such.

New ontological-style relationships

Two ontological-style relationships were added to link plant or animal hosts/pests with their biocontrol agents, and vectors transmitting known disease agents of medical or veterinary importance. These were added to support CABI Compendia projects and Global Health database. Thus far, 2535 biocontrol agents were associated with 979 hosts, and 945 disease vectors with 353 disease causing organisms. An additional 1000 biocontrol agents will be checked in the coming year.

Support for the Invasives Causing Extinction project

As part of the APHIS/USDA Invasives Causing Extinction (ICE) project, another round of species names were checked and added to CAB Thesaurus. This project tracks new species listed as endangered or threatened, and protected under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Information on these is provided to CABI, who add it to the 'Impacts to Biodiversity' section of datasheets in the Invasive Species Compendium. This is in addition to many new species which have been added from various other CABI Compendia.

Unicode support implemented

In the last couple of weeks we started using the Unicode compliant version of MultiTes Pro, our thesaurus management software. All the thesaurus data was transferred successfully from the previous ANSI version. That will open up many possibilities, not least of which is ability to handle non-Roman scripts, such as Chinese.

Next thesaurus edition

CABI may have just signed off on the 2018 edition but we have already started work on the next...


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