November 15, 2013 (Vol. 33, No. 20)


Strong Points: Easy to use, good tutorials, detailed information
Weak Points: Incomplete disease directory, no citations for content


OMIM—Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man—is a rich and comprehensive resource on human genes and heritable diseases. If you long for up-to-date information about human genetics it doesn’t get much better than this site, which is updated daily. The search field allows users to enter, for instance, a gene name or a disease; the ensuing results can be sorted by either relevance or date updated. Each gene/disease entry includes a great deal of information. For instance, a gene entry might include (among other things) a brief description of the gene, background on its initial discovery and cloning, a description of the gene’s function and gene family, and information on the gene’s involvement in particular phenotypes. Best of all, in-text citations are given so that scientists and clinicians can easily follow-up with the primary literature. To help users make the most of the website, the site includes detailed tutorials.