April 15, 2011 (Vol. 31, No. 8)
Strong Points: Large database, regular updates
Weak Points: Many ads, minimalist site design
Anyone who has had the misfortune of encountering poison oak knows all too well that plants can cause very pronounced dermatological symptoms. Yet, you may not be aware that there are hundreds of plant families whose members also produce dermatological effects. In case you happened to miss the 1979 publication entitled, “Botanical Dermatology,” you can click over to the Botanical Dermatology Database (BoDD) to explore this regularly updated electronic reincarnation of the 1979 text. Visitors can search the database, or they can browse the site via the plant families index. (The index can be accessed from the small link directly under the search box.) While the website cautions that none of the information should be used for diagnosis or treatment purposes, there are plenty of interesting tidbits to keep the curious mind engaged.