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PLoS By Category | Recent PLoS Articles
Computer Science - Geriatrics

Methods for Structuring Scientific Knowledge from Many Areas Related to Aging Research
Published: Friday, July 22, 2011
Author: Alex Zhavoronkov et al.

by Alex Zhavoronkov, Charles R. Cantor

Aging and age-related disease represents a substantial quantity of current natural, social and behavioral science research efforts. Presently, no centralized system exists for tracking aging research projects across numerous research disciplines. The multidisciplinary nature of this research complicates the understanding of underlying project categories, the establishment of project relations, and the development of a unified project classification scheme. We have developed a highly visual database, the International Aging Research Portfolio (IARP), available at AgingPortfolio.org to address this issue. The database integrates information on research grants, peer-reviewed publications, and issued patent applications from multiple sources. Additionally, the database uses flexible project classification mechanisms and tools for analyzing project associations and trends. This system enables scientists to search the centralized project database, to classify and categorize aging projects, and to analyze the funding aspects across multiple research disciplines. The IARP is designed to provide improved allocation and prioritization of scarce research funding, to reduce project overlap and improve scientific collaboration thereby accelerating scientific and medical progress in a rapidly growing area of research. Grant applications often precede publications and some grants do not result in publications, thus, this system provides utility to investigate an earlier and broader view on research activity in many research disciplines. This project is a first attempt to provide a centralized database system for research grants and to categorize aging research projects into multiple subcategories utilizing both advanced machine algorithms and a hierarchical environment for scientific collaboration.
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