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OBJECTIVE The objective of this paper is to demonstrate how a formal spatial theory can be used as an important tool for disambiguating the spatial information embodied in biomedical ontologies and for enhancing their automatic reasoning capabilities. METHOD AND MATERIALS This paper presents a formal theory of parthood and location relations among(More)
Parthood, componenthood, and containment relations are commonly assumed in biomedical ontolo-gies and terminology systems, but are not usually clearly distinguished from another. This paper contributes towards a unified theory of parthood, com-ponenthood, and containment relations. Our goal in this is to clarify distinctions between these relations as well(More)
We develop a formal theory of mereology that includes relations that change over time. We show how this theory formalizes reasoning over domains of material objects, which include not only integral objects (my computer, your liver) but also portions of stuff (the water in your glass, the blood in a vial). In particular, we use different mereological(More)
We propose an ontological theory that is powerful enough to describe both complex spatio-temporal processes and the enduring entities that participate therein. For this purpose we introduce the notion a directly depicting ontology. Directly depicting ontologies are based on relatively simple languages and fall into two major categories: ontologies of type(More)
OBJECTIVE We compare the advantages of specifying the semantics of foundational relations in bio-medical terminology systems using different types of formal deductive systems: first-order logic (FOL) and description logics (DLs). METHOD As our focus example, we use a terminology whose basic terms are supposed to designate proper parthood relations,(More)
This paper presents an axiomatic formalisation of a theory of top-level relations between three categories of entities: individuals, universals, and collections. We deal with a variety of relations between entities in these categories, including the sub-universal relation among universals and the parthood relation among individuals, as well as(More)