By default, Entrez searches your text in "All fields", which looks for the text anywhere in the entry. So if you're getting irrelevant results, try limiting your text to a particular field.
Don't know what fields you can search for? Use the Advanced search.
1. Click on advanced beneath the search bar.
2. Click the drop down menu under Builder to see what fields are stored in gene records.
This is a comprehensive list of all fields you can search for. Fields will vary by database. Example shown here is for the Gene database.
You can search the Gene database by
These search terms can be combined using Boolean operators. A common search strategy is to search for a gene symbol in an organism:
apoe[sym] AND human[orgn]
Will retrieve the record for the human APOE gene. Typically, this type of search will bring up a single record, because gene symbols are unique.
You could also search for human genes with clinically relevant SNPs on chromosome 6
gene_snp_clin[filter] AND human[orgn] AND 6[chr]
Get creative with the search terms depending on what type of information you want to find.
After submitting your search, a list of results will appear with gene records that match your query. The results page is divided into 3 columns:
Search details shows you what Entrez searched for. Typically you will see alive[prop] appended to your searches to only query up to date records, excluding those that have been retired.
Each gene record contains an immense amount of information. See below for a summary of what is in each section. See the pages for each section for more information (coming soon).