Ontologies and terminologies serve as the basis for semantic interoperability in knowledge discovery systems. As a research group that has a long history of building ontologies and terminologies, we present here a first version of the COVID-19 Ontology that includes all different aspects around Coronavirus disease 2019. The current version of the COVID-19 Ontology has been built using Protégé 5.2.0. The concepts in the terminology are collected mainly from publications and COVID19-related websites. In its current version, the ontology contains 2260 class of concepts and 39395 (logical axiom 2484, declaration axiom 2416) axioms. We have shared this with scientific community via Bioportal. The main classes focus on drugs, epidemiology, virus biology, virus-host interactions, and medical aspects like diagnostics.

From this COVID-19 Ontology, we have built a terminology which is mainly applied in text mining in the form of dictionaries to index and retrieve COVID specific literature corpus. We also use the terminology to reference and standardize COVID19-specific entities in knowledge graphs.

The terminology can be downloaded as an .owl file. We have also included the terminology in our Ontology Lookup Service (OLS) instance, which can be accessed here.

We are still in the process of adding new concepts and finalizing the annotation properties of concepts. After finalizing the terminology, we plan to upgrade the terminology to a full Ontology: the COVID-19 reference ontology. We invite other groups worldwide to join forces to come up with that referential ontology in a joint effort.

Like all our COVID-19 resources, the COVID-19 terminology will be shared without restrictions with the entire scientific community.