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New PubMed: Basic Search

This is a guide on how to search PubMed, the world's largest database of references and abstracts on life sciences and biomedical topics.

PubMed Home Page

Search By Author's Name

  • Search by the author’s last name and initials (without punctuation).
  • If you only know the author’s last name, use the author search field tag [au], e.g., brody[au].


  • If your author shares a common name with others, find an article by your author of interest and click on the link of the author’s name. This function runs a “computed author” algorithm that groups articles most likely by your author of interest (based on co-authors, affiliation and topic terms) and brings them to the top of your search results. Please see the example below:


Click on Find Articles by Author, A Quick Tour by NLM

Search By a Topic

How to Research a Topic
Enter your search terms into the search box
• Be specific
• Avoid quotation marks
• Avoid truncation (*)

Click on Find Articles on a Topic, A Quick Tour by NLM

Find Similar Articles

The Similar Articles link is as straightforward as it sounds. PubMed uses a powerful word-weighted algorithm to compare words from the Title and Abstract of each citation, as well as the MeSH headings assigned. The best matches for each citation are pre-calculated and stored as a set. To see the list, click on the citation to open the abstract page and scroll down to the Similar Articles. 

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