Biology 112: Enzyme Research Articles @ the PCC Library

Uploaded by pcclib on 30.01.2012

Welcome to the PCC Library’s short video on how to find research articles for your Biology class.
This video will show you the steps to finding a research article in the PCC library for use in the enzyme lab for your Biology 112 class.
We’ll first show you how to access biology article databases.
Next you’ll learn how to select and enter the best search terms.
Then we’ll show you how to refine your results using the tools available in the database.
And finally we’ll show you how to recognize a research article in the results list.
To access a list of the library’s article databases, click the “Databases A-Z” link on the library homepage.
Database are like paid-for search engines that contain articles published in magazines, newspapers and research journals.
There are many databases to choose from for Biology research.
Let’s start with Academic Search Premier. At this point, if you’re off campus, you’ll be prompted to enter your last name and G number.
Academic search premier is a great place to look for research articles on many topics, including Biology. But before we can start searching...
We need to think a bit about what words to type in the search boxes.
The fist step in identifying good search terms is to consult your lab manual.
The introduction to the lab is a great place to get background information.
Skimming the lab introduction, take a moment to circle or write down words that will be useful in a search.
For the enzyme lab, some of these words might be a good start. We recommend you try searching on an enzyme and one of the variables
in your experiment, such as temperature or pH. Using the astrisk as in the example here locates several versions of a word.
O P T I M with an asterisk will locate optimum, optimal or optima.
Research articles often report results using terminology like “optimal pH was 7.5.”
You might try any combination of the search terms listed here.
And here’s a search tip! When you type in your search words combine them with AND.
This tells the database you want to locate those words individually and not as a phrase.
And here’s another search tip. It will be easiest to find research articles on PPO in other plants.
Or pH and temperature studies for other enzymes in potatoes. So don’t limit yourself by just searching on potatoes.
So don’t limit yourselfby just searching on potatoes.
Here are the search terms catechol oxidase and temperature in Academic Search premier, with AND connecting the terms.
Click the search button to get a list of articles.
Notice there are 64 results. We can narrow the list down from here by clicking both “Full Text”
and “Peer Review” on the left hand side of the screen.
This will limit your results to full text articles from peer-reviewed journals in Academic Search Premier.
Now there are 15 full text articles listed. As you scan the list, be sure to read the abstracts, or article summaries,
to verify the article includes the information you need. If it’s not mentioned in the abstract, the article is less likely to be useful.
Browsing the results list, there are several articles that mention Polyphenol oxidase, or PPO, and different fruits or vegetables.
This research study uses grapes. I can tell it’s a research study because it comes from an Academic Journal,
and the summary mentions the research methods used. Click the PDF to view the full text.
From here, you can print, email or save the article. And clicking the “Cite” icon…
...will provide the citation for the article in a variety of formats. What a time saver!
But wait, there’s more! The library has over one hundred databases to choose from, so let’s try another one.
From the Databases A-Z list you can access all of the databases in the library. Now let’s click R-Z…
And head to Science Direct. Again, if you’re off campus, you’ll be prompted to enter your last name and G Number to access the database.
The Science Direct database hosts full-text articles from key research journals in Biology and other science disciplines.
But before we start searching…
Let’s review these search terms and pick different ones this time. How about we search on browning and PPO and pH as the variable.
Now back to the Science Direct database. Just type in your search terms, combined with AND, and hit the Search button.
Here is the results list. Notice we have over 900 articles, so we will want to narrow them down to a more manageable list.
One way to narrow is to add more search terms, such as a variable that interests you, like temperature.
Limiting to articles from a journal that focuses on food research is also a good strategy, such as Food Chemistry.
Lastly, look for green boxes that indicate Science Direct has the full-text of the article.
Also handy, is the greyed out text indicating the article is in fact an original research study.
And remember the importance of search terms. If you aren’t finding what you’re looking for, try searching with different combinations of words.
If you get confused or frustrated, you’re not alone. Searching for research articles that fit your assignment takes practice and time.
Being persistent pays off. Trying different search terms in several different databases to find an article is part of the research process.
And Just Ask, we’re here to help, so please call, chat online, or visit with a librarian at the reference desk if you have questions.
Good luck with your research!