November 15, 2012 (Vol. 32, No. 20)
Strong Points: Can browse by disease name or symptoms
Weak Points: Last updated in 2010
The human body is an amazing metabolic machine—thousands of enzymes catalyze an equivalent (and impressive) number of chemical reactions that allow the body to run properly. This complexity also means that there are many ways that things can go wrong. The Metabolic and Genetic Information Center, a site hosted by the School of Medicine at the University of Tuebingen, Germany, catalogs a large number of genetic disorders that result in defective metabolism. One can browse the database by disease name or symptoms. For each disease, the website lists clinical symptoms, incidence rate, treatment and other basic information; however, the main focus of the database is to provide links to relevant literature on PubMed. To that end, visitors to the site can also search the catalogued references by author. Unfortunately, while this site is definitely still a useful resource on the topic of genetic diseases, the last update was in 2010. As such, there are no literature citations more recent than that year.