OnTheFly: a tool for automated document-based text annotation, data linking and network generation

Bioinformatics. 2009 Apr 1;25(7):977-8. doi: 10.1093/bioinformatics/btp081. Epub 2009 Feb 17.


OnTheFly is a web-based application that applies biological named entity recognition to enrich Microsoft Office, PDF and plain text documents. The input files are converted into the HTML format and then sent to the Reflect tagging server, which highlights biological entity names like genes, proteins and chemicals, and attaches to them JavaScript code to invoke a summary pop-up window. The window provides an overview of relevant information about the entity, such as a protein description, the domain composition, a link to the 3D structure and links to other relevant online resources. OnTheFly is also able to extract the bioentities mentioned in a set of files and to produce a graphical representation of the networks of the known and predicted associations of these entities by retrieving the information from the STITCH database.

Availability: http://onthefly.embl.de, http://onthefly.embl.de/FAQ.html.

Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

MeSH terms

  • Database Management Systems
  • Databases, Factual
  • Information Storage and Retrieval / methods*
  • Software*
  • User-Computer Interface