The information age has made the electronic storage of large amounts of data effortless. The proliferation of documents available on the Internet, corporate intranets, news wires and elsewhere is overwhelming. Search engines only exacerbate this overload problem by making increasingly more documents available in only a few keystrokes. This information overload also exists in the biomedical field, where scientific publications, and other forms of text-based data are produced at an unprecedented rate. Text mining is the combined, automated process of analyzing unstructured, natural language text to discover information and knowledge that are typically difficult to retrieve. Here, we focus on text mining as applied to the biomedical literature. We focus in particular on finding relationships among genes, proteins, drugs and diseases, to facilitate an understanding and prediction of complex biological processes. The LitMiner™ system, developed specifically for this purpose; is described in relation to the Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining Cup 2002, which serves as a formal evaluation of the system.