not getting expected search results

i created a search setting called “medical” that searches the pub med sites, works great. It’s wonderful for finding new research on various topics. I was doing research on coenzyme Q10 and did my first search this way:

“coenzyme q10”. The first dozen listings returned were all titled “process for producing coenzyme q10”, so I stopped the query and structured one that read like this:

“coenzyme q10” AND NOT “process for producing”

the first dozen returns are still the same ones as previous with the phrase ‘process for producing’ still in the title. shouldn’t my query be weeding these out? am i doing something wrong or am i expecting more from the tool than it can give me?

by the way, i liked DA until I started doing heavy duty nutritional research, and now i freaking love it. I run the Egoscue clinic in Austin ( and we work with a lot of people in chronic pain who also have other issues. I got asked so frequently for nutritional supplement recommendations that i decided to do research and figure out what the strongest products out there were, and DA was indispensable in performing this research. It gives me access to stuff i’d never find otherwise.

now if i could just figure out how to exclude certain pages more effectively…

Just got time to try a similar search.

I created a search like yours, named Medical. Checked PubMed as the plugin. Set max search hits for 100.

At default, set search string as (coenzyme q10) NOT (process for producing)

Checked Follow Links, and used same search string as above.

Checked Filter Similar Pages. Checked save to archive.

DEVONagent took only seconds to return 100 hits and archive them.

No titles began with “Process for producing coenzyme q10” – looks like excluding that phrase worked.

Bill, in addition to pubmed, check entrez pubmed and nucleotide. it’s the latter from where the ‘process for producing’ results are being returned.

run it first on just coenzyme q10 to verify you get them, then add the NOT operator. I can’t exclude them.

Take out the AND from in front of the NOT. Make it simply “coenzyme q10” NOT “process for producing”


tried that.

also tried just a - instead of NOT.

none of it generates the results i expect.

Take a look at your Archive. When I did two different searches using the “Medical” set (with all three of the plugins you used), two different groups were created in my DA Archive, corresponding to the search strategies.

My first group was created using the search string (coenzyme q10), and contained 292 results. It did contain 12 titles that started with “Process for producing…”

The second group was created using the search string (coenzyme q10) NOT (process for producing), and contained 280 search results. So the NOT phrase exclusion DID work.

Here’s the kicker: If you search within your archive, you will find the items that you had wanted to exclude. They are there because they were produced by the first search strategy. You could, of course, delete them. But you would be left with two groups in your Archive, one of which was produced by your “better” search strategy. Since you deleted the undesired items from the first group, both groups now contain identical content. Why keep both?

Recommendation: Select and delete the group(s) produced by less-than-perfect search strategies, and keep only the group produced by the best strategy. :slight_smile: