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My NCBI: What to Know

What is NCBI and what does it have to do with compliance?

The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) is part of the United States National Library of Medicine (NLM), a branch of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

The 1988 establishment of NCBI occured due to three independent but related actions.  Additional information can be found here.

The following timeline provides a brief history of NLM/NCBI websites for NIH Public Acess Compliance:

* 1997 - PubMed is introduced as a freely accessible database of citation abstracts with links to other resources.

*  2000 - PubMed Central  is introduced as a free full-text digital archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature. PubMed Central (PMC) serves as the National Library’s legislative mandate to collect and preserve the world’s biomedical literature.

* 2005 - NCBI introduces the My NCBI tool, which retains user information and  preferences to provide customized services for many NCBI databases.

* 2010 - NCBI introduces the My Bibliography tool to to simplify the process for gathering one’s published articles and other materials. The tool, which is connected to NIH’s grants management system, also assists researchers in complying with the NIH Public Access Policy.

Helpful Links

Website link             Help Guide icon

What tools does NCBI support to help me with my reporting?

My Bibliography is a reference tool for saving citations from PubMed, uploading citations from a citation manager or creating citations manually. 

My Bibliography is used for reporting NIH Public Access Compliance by using information provided by PubMed Central (PMC) and NIH Manuscript Submission System (NIHMS).

How do I create a new NCBI account or link it to my existing account?

Create a new NCBI account:

  1. Use the following URL to get started
  2. If you already have an eRA Commons account, please use it to create your NCBI account.

Otherwise, you may use any of the icons listed or select "more options" which including most institutions.  All available 3rd party logins that you can use with your NCBI account are listed on the account page. You can search for ones that you may have already by typing the name in the filter box.


Linking your eRA Commons account to an existing NCBI account:

  1. Log in to your NCBI account.
  2. Click your username which is located on the top right of the browser page.
  3. Click Change in the Linked Account portlet.
  4. Locate eRA Commons, enter your eRA Commons credentials.

Remember icon Please log out of the eRA Commons prior to logging into NCBI.

How do I have someone else manage my account?

My Bibliography users can grant access to other persons (delegates) to view and manage their My Bibliography collection.  The delegates will then be able to add or to remove citations in a collection and they will be able to associate citations to grant as well.  Delegate invitations are inited by the NCBI account owners.

Send a delegation request:
    1. Log in to your NCBI account at
    2. Click on your username in the top right corner
    3. Under the "Delegates" section, click "Add a delegate" and enter the email address of your delegate

Accept a delegation request:
    1. Log in to your NCBI account at
    2. Open the delegation request located in your email
    3. Click on the delegation acceptance link
    4. The managed collection should now appear in My Bibliography.  


What other tools are available with an NCBI account?

Icon of My Bibliography Dashboard



Table Key

 My Bibliography
- contains citations you authored, citations to use in your biosketch, and/or track compliance for RPPR reporting

Saved Searches - queries from NCBI databases can be automatically emailed on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis

Search NCBI databases - directly search NCBI databases without leaving the homepage

- saved search results published by other authors. e.g. literature reviews, topics of interest, bookmark items to come back to, etc.

 Filters - create active preferred filters for NCBI database searches

 Recent Activities - user history searches for all databases, except PubMed


SciENcv - create Federal agency approved professional biosketches/profiles and support documentation



The NCBI Help Desk

What we do:

    • Assist customers using NCBI tools for Federal pre-award biosketches/financial support documentation and post-award NIH compliance.
    • Provide expert advice on NCBI login and account management support.
    • Provide guidance and troubleshooting for NCBI tools and resources.

How do I contact the NCBI Help Desk?

Help Desk icon

Last Reviewed: April 6, 2023