Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Update of Neoplasm Classification is now available

I'm interrupting my series of blogs on bimodal cancer age distributions to announce the release of the most recent version of the Developmental Lineage Classification and Taxonomy of Neoplasms.

The current classification contains 6083 neoplasm concepts (types of neoplasms) classified under 122,698 terms. It also contains a large number of unclassified neoplasm terms as addendum items. It is, by far and away, the world's largest neoplasm nomenclature.

The classification is available in XML, RDF and flat-file formats. Here is the preface text distributed with each formatted version:

"This file was prepared by Jules J. Berman. The first version of this file was created November 15, 2003. The current version was created on January 27, 2009.

Copyright © 2003-2009 Jules J. Berman

Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is available.

The neoclxml file is provided "as is", without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, including but not limited to the warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose and noninfringement. in no event shall the author or copyright holder be liable for any claim, damages or other liability, whether in an action of contract, tort or otherwise, arising from, out of or in connection with the software or the use or other dealings in the software.

An explanation of the classification can be found in the following two publications, which should be cited in any publication or work that may result from any use of this file.

Berman JJ. Tumor classification: molecular analysis meets Aristotle. BMC Cancer 4:8, 2004.

Berman JJ. Neoplasms: Principles of Development and Diversity. Jones and Bartlett Publishers, Sudbury, MA, 2009.

In the Neoplasm Classification, all classified names of neoplasms are coded with a "C" followed by a 7 digit number other than 0000000.

For example, "C9168000" = rectal signet ring adenocarcinoma

In addition to classified terms, there are three groups of unclassified terms that are provided special items that follow the list of classified terms in this file.

"S" followed by 7 digits
"ST" followed by 7 digits

This list of unclassified terms coded as "C0000000" consists of general cancer terms that do not specify any particular neoplasm; overly specific terms that provide so-call pre-coordinated annotations related to terms contained elsewere in the Classification; and valid terms that have not been added (yet) to the list of classified neoplasm terms.

Examples of overly specific terms are:

squamous carcinoma of the nasal vestibule, gastric non-hodgkin lymphoma of mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue, primary primitive neuroectodermal tumor of the kidney

The terms that are coded "S" followed by 7 digits are inherited syndromes that have a neoplastic component (i.e., the occasional or frequent appearance of neoplasms in the syndrome).

The terms that are coded "ST" followed by 7 digits are staging terms used by oncologists.

The classification is meant for informatics projects that use computer parsing techniques. Programmers should simply insert statements that filter the unclassified terms included in the file."

Additional information may be available from the author's web site:

The Neoplasm Classification is available as a zipped XML file at:

The Neoplasm Classification is available as a zipped flat file at:

The Neoplasm Classification is available as a zipped RDF file at:

© 2009 Jules Berman

key words: medical nomenclature, classification, rdf, xml, ontology, data mining, ontology, science
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