18th Sep 2014

As part of a series of blog posts at Nowomics, Pete McQuilton and founder Richard Smith guest blogged for GARNet today. Nowomics is a new website that fetches data from many biological databases every day and works out what’s changed, and finds genes and species names mentioned in new PubMed abstracts. This lets users (user accounts are free) to follow genes and gene ontology terms to create a personalised news feed of new papers and data. 

McQuilton extracted data on primary research papers from PubMed (excluding reviews and clinical trials) for a ten year range from 2004-2013 and identified those that mention Arabidopsis in the title or abstract. These papers are defined as Arabidopsis papers. From this analysis, it is clear that the Arabidopsis community is thriving, having produced just over 3500 papers in 2013, up from 1847 in 2004. This represents a 91% increase in article number, keeping pace with the overall rise in number of journal articles published, which has grown by 95% since 2004.

From 2004 to 2011, Plant Physiology, Plant Journal and Plant Cell made up the top three journals publishing Arabidopsis research, but Plant Signal Behaviour has risen rapidly from its inception in 2006 to join the top five in 2008. By far the strongest trend is the rise of PLoS ONE from outside the top ten in 2010 to topping the chart with 315 papers published in 2013–representing 9% of all Arabidopsis articles in 2013.

In terms of country of origin of Arabidopsis papers, the main increase is found in China, with explosive growth from 74 papers in 2004 to 650 papers in 2013, matching the output of the USA. Other Asian countries have also experienced significant growth but not to such high volumes, such as India rising from 3 papers in 2004 to 70 in 2013 and South Korea increasing from 49 to 142. Publication levels in the UK, Germany and Japan have risen slightly, but overall have remained relatively constant over the last 10 years. However, with the growing activity in China many countries have seen a drop in percentage of overall Arabidopsis papers from 2004 to 2013: USA 32-19%, Japan 13-9%, and UK 7-4%.

If you want to keep up with the latest Arabidopsis research, you can use the Nowomics Arabidopsis news feed, showing all the abstracts of the latest and popular Arabidopsis papers, along with Arabidopsis-related curated annotation.

This news article is an edited version of the Nowomics blog post on the GARNet blog, Weeding the Gems. To read the full post, which includes figures and methods, go to: