DrugBank Release Notes — 4.5.0

Version 4.5.0 — Released April 20, 2016

This is the first DrugBank release that requires creating a DrugBank account. If you were previously accessing the DrugBank downloads using a script or program, you can continue to do so, please see the instructions.

If you plan on using DrugBank data commercially, please contact us at info@omx.io.

Versioning Strategy

Going forward, DrugBank releases will use a form of Semantic Versioning for the DrugBank data. With this versioning strategy, the following applies:

For data exports (including XML), given a version number MAJOR.MINOR.PATCH (e.g. 4.5.0), we are using the following rules for updating the version:

  • MAJOR version will be incremented when we make incompatible data schema changes (e.g. adding/removing/moving nodes)
  • MINOR version will be incrementeed when we add new data in a backwards-compatible manner (e.g. adding a new drug group)
  • PATCH version will be incremented with each new data export, and reset to 0 when the MAJOR or MINOR versions change.

With this versioning system, it makes it clearer how new releases will need to be integrated into your system. Each MAJOR and MINOR release will also include release notes detailing the changes.


Releases are now kept indefinetly, tied to their specific version, meaning you can always go back to a previous version. This means you can reference a particular version of DrugBank in publications, posters, and software.

Current XML Schema Changes

The XML schema has a single minor change, the group type vet_approved has been added to possible drug groups.

<xs:restriction base="xs:string">
    <xs:enumeration value="approved"/>
    <xs:enumeration value="illicit"/>
    <xs:enumeration value="experimental"/>
    <xs:enumeration value="withdrawn"/>
    <xs:enumeration value="nutraceutical"/>
    <xs:enumeration value="investigational"/>
    <xs:enumeration value="vet_approved"/>

This shouldn't impact any scripts or applications reading the XML data, however keep in mind that some drugs have only the group vet_approved.