Workshop: NLP for Medicine and Biology
10 September 2015

in conjunction with
Recent Advances in Natural Language Processing

7-9 September 2015, Hissar, Bulgaria




The 4th RANLP NLP for Medicine and Biology workshop 2015 will continue the traditions established by its earlier editions in 2009, 2011 and 2013. It will be held on September 10, 2015 in Hisar, Bulgaria. Biomedical NLP deals with the processing of healthcare-related text – clinical documents created by the physicians at the point of care, scientific publications in the areas of biology and medicine and consumer healthcare text such as social media blogs. Recent years have seen dramatic changes in the types and amount of data available to researchers in this field. Where most research on publications in the past has dealt with the abstracts of journal articles, we now have access to the full texts of journal articles via PubMedCentral. Where research on clinical documents has been hampered by a lack of availability of data, we now have access to large bodies of data through the auspices of the Cincinnati Children's Hospital NLP Challenge, the i2b2 shared tasks (, the TREC Electronic Medical Records track, the US-funded Strategic Health Advanced Research Projects Area 4 ( and the Shared Annotated Resources (ShARe;; project. Meanwhile, the number of abstracts in PubMed continues to grow exponentially. Text in the form of blogs created by patients discussing various healthcare topics has emerged as another source with a new perspective on health-related issues. Connecting the information from the three main sources in multiple languages – the scientific community, the healthcare provider and the healthcare consumer – presents new challenges.

The Biomedical NLP Workshop at RANLP 2015 will provide a venue for presentations of current work in this field. Submissions in the areas of medicine and biology are both welcome, as is research on the genres of publications, clinical documents, and web-based materials.

Topics of interest are focused exclusively on biomedical text and include, but are not limited to:

- Basic natural language processing techniques, such as sentence boundary detection, tokenization, part of speech tagging, and parsing
- Named entity recognition
- Concept recognition and normalization
- Ontologies and controlled vocabularies
- Semantic role labeling
- Relation extraction
- Summarization
- Integration of free text and structured data mining
- Patient-reported observations
- Knowledge representation and management
- Non-English and multilingual language processing
- Evaluation and testing of text mining systems
- Applications of biomedical information extraction such as question-answering, patient cohort identification, decision support systems, direct patient care

Important dates:

Submission deadline: 31 July 2015 (new extended deadline)
Acceptance notification: 15 August 2015
Camera-ready versions: 25 August 2015
Workshop date: 10 September 2015, in conjunction with RANLP 2015

Submission instructions:

We invite regular papers 8 pages (excluding references) as well as demo papers and project notes 4 pages (excluding references). Submissions will be maintained by the START system. The authors should use the templates at and follow the guidelines there. All articles, accepted for presentation, will appear in the Workshop Proceedings and will be uploaded at the ACL Anthology.

If you want to make a submission now, please proceed to START.

Review and multiple submission policy

All submissions should be anonymous. Submissions will be reviewed by three members of the program committee.

The workshop calls for papers describing original research. Multiple submissions are not permitted. If your paper is under review at any other venue, it will be rejected from the workshop without review.

Organizing committee:

Guergana Savova (Children's Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School)
Kevin Bretonnel Cohen (University of Colorado, School of Medicine)
Svetla Boytcheva (IICT Bulgarian Academy of Sciences)

Program Committee:

Svetla Boytcheva (IICT, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences)
Kevin Bretonnel Cohen (University of Colorado, School of Medicine)
Aaron Cohen (Oregon Health & Science University)
Dmitriy Dligach (Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School)
Karën Fort (Paris Sorbonne, France)
Cyril Grouin (LIMSI-CNRS, France)
Aurélie Névéol (LIMSI-CNRS, France)
Ivelina Nikolova (IICT, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences)
Guergana Savova (Children's Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School)
Catalina Oana-Tudor (Center of Bioinformatics and Computational Biology, University of Delaware)

Workshop venue:

The workshop will be held on Thursday, September 10, 2015 in conjunction with RANLP 2015 in Hissar, Bulgaria. See the RANLP 2015 web site at for further details.

Contact us at: NLPMedBio2015 [at] lml [dot] bas [dot] bg