ACS Joint Board-Council Committee on Chemical Abstracts Service (CCAS)

The Joint Board-Council Committee on Chemical Abstracts Service (also known as CCAS) met twice in 2015 and met again at the Spring National Meeting in San Diego. The Committee consists of members from academia, industry, and government, and continues to fulfill its charter by serving as a channel for the flow of information between CAS management, ACS members, and users of CAS products and services. At each CCAS meeting, committee members held open dialogue on a range of topics, including synthetic chemistry dissertations, junior college solution options, and the SciFinder Future Leaders in Chemistry program and provided input on new products and services.

At both 2015 meetings, CAS management provided the committee with an overview of financial performance as well as product and service news. At the fall meeting in Boston, committee members learned that CAS continues furthering its leadership position in the scientific community, exemplified by the registration of the 100 millionth chemical substance in CAS REGISTRY, in the 50th anniversary year of the world’s largest database of unique chemical substances. CAS is also becoming a robust solutions provider with exciting new products. Members were pleased to learn about MethodsNow, a new workflow solution for analytical, pharmaceutical, and biotech scientists that will provide access to the largest collection ever of analytical procedures, indexed and organized by CAS, and will save researchers time in the lab, as well as provide advancements for researchers in commercial, government, and academic organizations. This highly-innovative benchtop solution features the world’s largest collection of templated protocols in analytical chemistry and reaction science. MethodsNow will be offered as a “stand-alone” product, and selected capabilities will be offered as an add-on within the SciFinder experience.

CAS successfully launched three new products and services in 2015 including PatentPak, NCI Global, and CHEMCATS. These new offerings expanded CAS’s product portfolio with an innovative workflow improvement for scientists, a solution for regulatory professionals, and a new business model for chemical suppliers whose products are promoted to hundreds of thousands of scientists around the world via SciFinder. In 2016, CAS introduced PatentPak in STN for intellectual property professionals.

CAS databases continue to grow at record pace: a new record of more than 13.5 million new substances were added to the CAS REGISTRY in 2015, which now includes more than 105 million small molecules. This exceeds the prior record set in 2014, when 13.1 million new CAS RNs were assigned. As in recent years, growth in 2015 was driven by prophetic substances identified in patents, chemical supplier offerings in CHEMCATS, and organic growth for indexing of the literature.

The CCAS Committee met in Executive Session on March 11, 2016, where CAS management reported on highlights from 2015, including financial and strategic updates. CAS President, Manuel Guzman, reported that CAS’ sustained solutions performance continues to support ACS initiatives. The new products released in 2015 are being well-received by customers around the world as CAS continues to expand its global reach through support for the scientific enterprise, adding dedicated resources in the following seven countries: Japan, South Korea, Brazil, Mexico, Taiwan, Singapore, and Australia. Expansion efforts now total thirty new team members in eleven countries, bringing direct representation to nearly twenty countries.

I am pleased to report that the Committee on Chemical Abstracts Service continues to fulfill its responsibilities in a purposeful manner. Committee members provide important feedback, suggestions and questions regarding CAS solutions. We welcome input from ACS members and all CAS users through the ACS Member Network. I encourage you to stop by the CAS booth at the Convention Center to learn more about the numerous exciting initiatives underway at CAS.

Wendy Cornell Chair,
Joint Board-Council Committee
on Chemical Abstracts Service