CABI Blog

The 2020 edition of CAB Thesaurus has been published after reaching a significant milestone – it now includes more than 3 million terms/labels with special focus given to the needs of Plantwise, Compendia, VetMed Resource, and the Global Health and the CAB Abstracts databases.

The CAB Thesaurus is the essential search tool for all users of the CAB ABSTRACTS™ and Global Health databases and related products. The CAB Thesaurus is not only an invaluable aid for database users but it has many potential uses by individuals and organizations indexing their own information resources for both internal use and on the Internet.

Particular attention to the improvements, since the last edition was published in July 2019, include significantly increasing the translation of English content.

The total number of terms/labels now stands at 3,014,039, an increase of 109,274 since the 2019 edition, which includes 182,060 distinct concepts (preferred terms), 149,164 non-preferred terms, as well as translations from English into eleven European languages. This is many times more than any other life sciences thesaurus in existence.

New Content and Features – some highlights

  1. The number of terms/labels now exceeds 3 million (3,014,039 to be exact). A
    major milestone.
  2. A total of 25,225 terms were updated in some way to produce the 2020
    edition. Of these, 10,713 were new terms in English.
  3. Revision of dicot plant families continued, using the current APG IV system of
    classification. Revisions were completed of all families included in the
    Rosales, notably the rose family which is hugely important for crops and
    ornamentals, as well as Fagales (7 families), Crossosomatales (7 families),
    Huerteales (4 families), and numerous smaller families in other orders.
  4. A review of the lesser known crops and culinary fruits, particularly in Central
    and South America, West Africa and Asia, resulted in a substantial number of
    new additions. These were also linked to major groupings and products.
  5. Many new invasive species were checked/added/updated, especially those
    impacting the Caribbean, Baltic and Mediterranean.
  6. More ontological-style relationships were added. The thesaurus now includes
    1366 vectors of 728 vectored agents (medical, veterinary and horticultural),
    3363 biocontrol agents of 1380 hosts, and 3567 diseases caused by 2223
    disease agents. Taxonomic revisions of the relevant organisms were carried
    out in parallel.
  7. A new associative relationship was added to identify hybrids and their
    parents.
  8. We added 7508 translations of non-taxonomic terms from English, particularly
    into German (2002), French (897), Spanish (437), Portuguese (336), Finnish
    (334) and Dutch (217). Russian was added as a new language this year, with
    799 translations.
  9. The number of terms categorized as Miscellaneous was reduced from 2991 in
    2019 (1.0% of total terms in English) to 2631 currently (0.8%). These will be
    reduced even further in the next thesaurus edition by redistributing them to
    other categories.
  10. English terms with history notes increased from 87.7% to 88.8%.

Read the full CAB Thesaurus 2020 edition report here: https://www.cabi.org/Uploads/cab-thesaurus/CAB-Thesaurus-2020-edition-report.pdf

Discover more about the CAB Thesaurus here: https://www.cabi.org/publishing-products/cab-thesaurus/

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