How to add links to literature

The chemical literature is important in every stage of the research process, from planning your project/experiment to performing a reaction and analysing a reaction to publicising your own research. ChemSpider provides a simple way to add citations for relevant publications to a ChemSpider record.


Adding literature links to a substance

In order to make a deposition you will need have already created a ChemSpider user account (Find out more).

There are then 3 ways that you can add a reference to a publication:

  1. Enter the publication details manually
  2. Add a Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
  3. Add a PubMed Identifier

When logged in users will see the Add data menu

at the top of every record.

These three methods are explained below (starting with the simplest method 1st).

Add a Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

Find the record that you wish to add the reference to (you should check that the structure is correct, including correctly defined stereochemistry).

Click on the DOI option (listed in the Add data to this record box), a pop-up form will appear (image below). You can then paste/type in the DOI of the article that you wish to add. Note: the instructions about the format of the DOI. Then click Look Up – this may take several seconds. (ChemSpider will then attempt to retrieve the full citation data for inclusion in the record).

Useful information

(What is a Digital Object Identifier?)  DOI’s are commonly displayed on the article landing page on the publishers’ site and within article pdfs.

When the citation has been returned quickly check that the correct details have been returned. If you make an error, you can correct the DOI and click Look Up again. When you are happy with the results click OK to accept (or Cancel if there is a problem).

The citation will now be displayed on in the Links and Reference tab of the Articles infobox.

Add a PubMed Identifier

If you prefer to use PubMed identifiers (or perhaps the publication of interest does not have a DOI assigned but has a PubMedID), you can add a reference using the PubMedID in much the same way as a DOI.


If you wish to create a link to a record in PubMed (eg. PMID 14510603) to a ChemSpider record.

Again you must have logged into  your ChemSpider  account and have located the record for the compound.

Then from the Add Data to this record box select PubMed ID.

Enter the PubMed ID in the following popup box and select Look Up to return the details from the PubMed website:


Click OK to Add the link.
Please do consider doing this to highlight your recommendations and publications to the thousands of users visiting the site everyday. It is a great benefit to the users of ChemSpider and the community in general.

Add a Publication

The add Publication option allows you to add a reference by manually adding the citation details. This can be time consuming and provides opportunities to make mistakes – therefore where possible we would advise that you use one of the other methods of adding a citation.

Ensure that you are logged into ChemSpider and find the record for the chemical structure that you wish to add the reference to. Then click on Publication to open up the input form.

Please try and fill in as many of the fields as completely as possible, to allow users to be able find the source publication.

This page outlines 3 ways in which you can add information about a relevant publication to a record, so why not add your publications?

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