Color, share, and celebrate Picture Book Month in November!


An 1835 illustration featured in the National Library of Medicine’s #ColorOurCollections Coloring Book.

Art Therapy, Adult Coloring Books and Your Mental Health

According to the American Art Therapy Association, art therapy is a mental health profession in which the process of making and creating artwork is used to “explore feelings, reconcile emotional conflicts, foster self-awareness, manage behavior and addictions, develop social skills, improve reality orientation, reduce anxiety and increase self-esteem.”

The Health Benefits of Adult Coloring Books

Despite the fact that coloring and art therapy aren’t quite the same thing, coloring does offer a slew of mental benefits. Coloring definitely has therapeutic potential to reduce anxiety, create focus, or bring [about] more mindfulness. Groundbreaking research in 2005 proved anxiety levels dropped when subjects colored mandalas, which are round frames with geometric patterns inside. Simply doodling, though, had no effect in reducing the other subjects’ stress levels.

Just like meditation, coloring also allows us to switch off our brains from other thoughts and focus only on the moment, helping to alleviate free-floating anxiety. It can be particularly effective for people who aren’t comfortable with more creatively expressive forms of art. Now get coloring!

The South and North Campus Branch Libraries will have coloring stations with crayons and pages of science and medical related material for you to enjoy this month.

Download these free science and medical-related coloring books featured at the Library coloring tables this month:

Follow the Library’s Facebook or Twitter page for a daily page to color from these collections.

New SciFinder updates include non-Java structure editor

js_structure_editorSciFinder, a chemical and other sciences research database, now features a new version of the CAS Structure Editor that does not require the use of a Java plugin. The Java version of the editor is still available for your users, who can now easily select their preferred editor.

The new editor queries the same content
researchers have always accessed. There is some missing functionality in the new editor. SciFinder chose to release the limited version due to the pressing need of some users who were experiencing Java-related issues. For more information on the plugin-free, Non-Java CAS Structure Editor, visit

Additionally, the latest SciFinder release features the following updates:

  • Analyze reaction answer sets by reagent to more quickly identify your synthesis of interest.
  • View substance and supplier information simultaneously now that our popular Quick View feature is available from Commercial Sources answer sets. In addition, many top catalog entries now feature direct links to supplier emails from right within SciFinder.
  • Update account information more easily with a new account management link to myCAS® available in Preferences.
  • SciPlannerTM how-to guides are now more easily accessible to help you make use of the full power of the features and functionality available within SciPlanner.

For SciFinder questions, including how to conduct specific searches, please contact the CAS Customer Center at or 800-753-4227.

By JoVE, it’s experiment journal articles on video! Three sections now available online

Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE) is a peer reviewed, PubMed-indexed video journal devoted to the publication of biological, medical, chemical and physical research. UTSW institutional online access is now available for three sections:  General; Neuroscience; Clinical & Translational Medicine.

In addition to the three sections named above,
there are six more sections with limited open access. These sections are Immunology & Infection; Bioengineering; Applied Physics; Chemistry; Behavior; Environment. Limited open access is also available to some videos in the other sections:

  • after a 2 year embargo all videos available thru PubMed
  • if author(s) pay a publishing fees in advance of publication to allow open access to his/her/their video
  • if publisher provides complimentary access to selected videos for limited time periods

Graduate School students: online ETD submission!

Students in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences are now able to submit electronic theses or dissertations (ETDs) online using Vireo. Everything students need for this is available at the Library’s Electronic Theses & Dissertations portal:

  • Dissertation preparation instructions
  • Thesis/dissertation template
  • Student guide to online ETD submission
  • Online submission system login

Vireo is an online ETD submission system developed by the Texas Digital Library (TDL). It is used by many institutions in Texas, including Texas A&M University, Texas Tech University, and the University of Texas at Austin.

As the largest ETD contributor, the Graduate School was selected by the Library as the first of the three degree-granting schools at UT Southwestern to test and implement Vireo. The Medical School and the School of Health Professions will work with the Library to implement Vireo after the system receives an upgrade later this year.

Using Vireo, students can submit an ETD online, track the status of an ETD, and submit comments or corrections as needed through the system. For Graduate School and Library staff, information about each ETD is available within the system, making processing much quicker and more efficient.

SciFinder adds new features

SciFinder’s latest update improves precision and evaluation of reaction answer sets and allows easier collaboration with other SciFinder users.

More Precise Reaction Answer Sets

  • A new default role (reactant) assigned to substances or fragments to the left of the reaction arrow improves the precision of reaction searches. (The former default role of reactant/reagent is still an option.)

Group Reaction Answers by Transformation

  • Evaluate synthesis options and preferred pathways quickly by grouping single-step reaction answers by transformation type
  • Classify answers in a way that is meaningful to synthetic chemists
  • Manage and evaluate large, comprehensive answer sets easily
  • Take advantage of hundreds of common transformation types

Property Search

  • Search substances by individual experimental or predicted property
  • Target substances with a particular property value or range of values in the CAS REGISTRYSM, which contains more than 66 million substances characterized by 3.6 billion experimental and predicted properties

Share SciPlanner™ Plans

  • Export a plan locally in the new SciPlanner exchange format (.pkx) and email or share the file with a colleague
  • Open shared plans using the new Import feature

For more information, go to SciFinder’s What’s New page.

Reaxys & SciFinder: New biochemistry resources in focus at Showcase

The exciting new and enhanced biochemistry resources SciFinder and a new resource available on November 9th, Reaxys, will be featured at the upcoming Fall Library Showcase. Space is limited and registration is required for the workshops.
Working with the new SciFinder Webinar workshop is on Wednesday, November 18th from 9:30a.m. – 11 a.m in the Library Administration Conference Room on the Middle Floor of the South Campus (main) Library. Marie Sparks, SciFinder Trainer, will highlight the new capabilities of the Web-based SciFinder portal. Topics will include:

  • Creating email alerts by topic or journal
  • Demonstrating how to identify if a molecule (particular structure drawn) has biological activity or is part of the structure of a “natural product”
  • Locating spectral data on compounds, such as Carbon 13
  • Locating physical data, such as boiling and melting points

Using Reaxys is on Thursday, November 19th from 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. in the South Campus (main) Library Classroom on the Main Floor. Dr. Lee Smith, Reaxys representative and trainer, will be introducing this new resource which combines the following three well-respected databases into a single access point:

  • CrossFire Beilstein
  • CrossFire Gmelin
  • Patent Chemistry Database

Come prepared with any questions, generic or specific, that you may have – there will be time to ask!