Medical Subject Headings (MeSH®) in MEDLINE®/PubMed®: A Tutorial
- Asterisks on MeSH headings and subheadings (e.g., Wound Healing/radiation effects*) designate that they are the major topics of the article, usually obtained from the title and/or statement of purpose
- Non-major (non-asterisked) headings and subheadings are usually additional topics substantively discussed within the article, terms added to qualify a major topic, or check tags. Check tags are never major topics.
- The only indexed MEDLINE citations without an asterisked heading are some biographies in which the subject’s name may be considered the only major point.
- Supplementary concept headings cannot be asterisked or carry subheadings. However, they are mapped to a MeSH heading that is automatically added to the citation. The mapped MeSH heading can carry those attributes.
Citations for articles in which the function of one or more genes and/or proteins is a major topic are linked to entries in the NCBI Gene database.
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