A user-friendly tool for medical-related patent retrieval

Stud Health Technol Inform. 2012:174:121-5.


Health-related information retrieval is complicated by the variety of nomenclatures available to name entities, since different communities of users will use different ways to name a same entity. We present in this report the development and evaluation of a user-friendly interactive Web application aiming at facilitating health-related patent search. Our tool, called TWINC, relies on a search engine tuned during several patent retrieval competitions, enhanced with intelligent interaction modules, such as chemical query, normalization and expansion. While the functionality of related article search showed promising performances, the ad hoc search results in fairly contrasted results. Nonetheless, TWINC performed well during the PatOlympics competition and was appreciated by intellectual property experts. This result should be balanced by the limited evaluation sample. We can also assume that it can be customized to be applied in corporate search environments to process domain and company-specific vocabularies, including non-English literature and patents reports.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Humans
  • Information Storage and Retrieval / methods*
  • Internet*
  • Patents as Topic*
  • Search Engine / methods*
  • User-Computer Interface*