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Press release

Elsevier launches EmBiology to deliver the unparalleled insights into biological activities that accelerate drug discovery

New York | April 19, 2023

Elsevier, a leader in global information analytics, has launched EmBiology, a research tool that visualizes a comprehensive landscape of biological relationships, empowering researchers to gain a rapid understanding of disease biology and focus on critical evidence. Like Elsevier’s medical research database Embase, EmBiology extracts and delivers information from Elsevier content and third-party publishers. Powered by Elsevier’s Biology Knowledge Graph, EmBiology draws on more than 7.2 million full-text journal articles, 34.5 million abstracts and 430,000 clinical trials. Researchers working in drug discovery and development will be able to intuitively explore biological relationships and concepts to improve drug target and biomarker identification and prioritization. The depth and reliability of EmBiology’s data will enable more confident decision making about what targets to pursue and how to modulate the disease process.

“Researchers at pharmaceutical companies are faced with the monumental task to uncover insights from overwhelming amounts of information to identify new, more effective therapies. Intense competition demands that insights are identified quickly and confidently; researchers need to be equipped with data skills to do that,” comments Dr. Sherry Winter, Director of Biology and Biomedical Solutions at Elsevier. “EmBiology relieves this pressure by collating critical disease data into a single place and structuring it in an interactive way. This facilitates evidence-based research decisions for successful projects that ultimately bring novel treatments to patients faster.”

Embiology upstream & downstream chart

Caption: Initial view in EmBiology showing upstream and downstream relationships, including effect, on the drug target IL4. Users apply advanced filters to narrow results and can explore associated references.

EmBiology surfaces relationship information, including directionality and effect, for a wide range of subject areas including expression, biomarkers and regulation. Elsevier automates data curation with technology that transforms unstructured text into structured information. The resulting knowledge graph includes 1.4 million entities connected by 15.7 million relationships to enable deep insights from a broad range of literature, with more added weekly, so researchers can be confident they are always viewing the latest concepts and terms. Results are displayed in a Sankey diagram that visually facilitates understanding of disease development, progression and drug responsiveness, whatever the researchers’ level of data skills. Users can also apply filters to narrow down their research questions and rapidly confirm their experimental hypotheses for new drug targets, biomarkers and drug repurposing projects.

“Elsevier has a longstanding reputation as a leader in managing and disseminating scientific information and classifying life science data,” continues Dr. Winter. “A team of subject matter experts developed and refined our Biology Knowledge Graph over a period of more than 20 years. EmBiology is built on this powerful data model, so that researchers can get precise answers to their questions without worrying about structuring data.”

About Elsevier

As a global leader in scientific information and analytics, Elsevier helps researchers and healthcare professionals advance science and improve health outcomes for the benefit of society. We do this by facilitating insights and critical decision-making with innovative solutions based on trusted, evidence-based content and advanced AI-enabled digital technologies.

We have supported the work of our research and healthcare communities for more than 140 years. Our 9,500 employees around the world, including 2,500 technologists, are dedicated to supporting researchers, librarians, academic leaders, funders, governments, R&D-intensive companies, doctors, nurses, future healthcare professionals and educators in their critical work. Our 2,900 scientific journals and iconic reference books include the foremost titles in their fields, including Cell Press, The Lancet and Gray’s Anatomy.

Together with the Elsevier Foundationopens in new tab/window, we work in partnership with the communities we serve to advance inclusion and diversity in science, research and healthcare in developing countries and around the world.

Elsevier is part of RELXopens in new tab/window, a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. For more information on our work, digital solutions and content, visit


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