EDITORIAL POLICIES Editorial Policies for Discoveries and Discoveries Reports


A. PEER REVIEW PROCESS, POLICY AND STANDARDS

Manuscript Submission
Discoveries and Discoveries Reports bring to the research community an OUTSTANDING Editorial Board and are committed to use several important INNOVATIONS: manuscripts can be submitted in any format (only accepted manuscripts will be accordingly modified to respect our standards and requirements), we have a fast submission process, there is no need for a cover letter and we introduced rules for validation of critical reagents such as antibodies.

See our EDITORIAL: Bucur O et al. Discoveries: an innovative platform for publishing cutting-edge research discoveries in medicine, biology and chemistry. Discoveries 2013, Oct-Dec; 1(1): e1
• Manuscripts can be either submitted by using our online submission form (http://discoveriesjournals.org/submit-manuscript) or directly by e-mail (sending the whole manuscript as a “.pdf” file to submission@discoveriesjournals.org)
•  Currently, the submission and publication of articles are free of any charge; a publication fee will be introduced for Discoveries once all Discoveries articles are included on PubMed
•  The manuscript can be considered by both our journals, Discoveries and Discoveries Reports (authors can specify their top preference or the editors can chose the appropriate journal)

Peer Review Process
• STRICT EDITORIAL and ETHICAL RULES are enforced in order to maintain a high quality of the accepted manuscripts. Submitted articles are first prescreened by the Executive or Senior Editors, who decide whether they should be reviewed or not. If they are selected, an Editor (either Senior Editor or a regular Editor) is assigned and at least two independent expert reviewers are required for the decision. The editors can ask the corresponding author to nominate several potential reviewers, experts in the needed field. The authors can suggest potential reviewers for their manuscript, as long as the reviewers are not their collaborators. The editor will decide to invite or not the suggested reviewers. In any peer-review process, only 1 reviewer suggested by the authors can be included. Based on the recommendations sent by at least 2 reviewers, submitted using our Reviewer’s Submission Form, the Editor decides if the manuscript is accepted, accepted pending revision (minor or major) or rejected. Our Editors reserve the right to reject a paper on either scientific quality/importance/originality and/or ethical grounds.
•  Starting on July 13th, 2015, the editor of accepted original articles, reviews and perspective articles in DISCOVERIES will be disclosed. Interview articles and Editorials are managed by the Editors-in-chief, Drs. Elisa A. Liehn, MD, PhD and Octavian Bucur, MD, PhD. Editorials follow the general rules during the peer-reviewed process. Interview articles are reviewed by Editors-in-Chief before acceptance.

Publication
• Once the manuscript is accepted by the Editor, its final format is created and sent back to the authors for review. Publication is finalized with the specific DOI number assignment to the manuscript and publication of the manuscript on the website.

The review and publication process of Discoveries follows The Council of Science Editors (CSE)'s Editorial Policy Statements, that cover the responsibilities and rights of editors of the peer-reviewed journals: Council of Science Editors (CSE)'s Policies Publication

PLEASE NOTE: We are receiving an increasing number of manuscripts for which the identity of the authors/corresponding author can't be verified. ALL these articles were and will be immediately REJECTED. Indicating an institutional email address is the easiest way to overcome this problem! Moreover, we do not accept any pressure on our editorial board to accept a manuscript. This results in a prompt rejection of the article, without exception.


B. ETHICS and MISCONDUCT

Research Ethics
• If the research described involves human subjects or experimental animals, the authors must give details in the manuscript of the approval obtained for the protocol from the Ethics Committee of the institution in which the research was undertaken.
• Experiments on live vertebrates or higher invertebrates must be demonstrated to be ethically acceptable and in accordance with institutional and national guidelines or regulations for the use and welfare of laboratory animals.
• If the manuscript reports medical research involving human subjects, authors must include a statement confirming that informed consent was obtained from all subjects, and that the research was carried out according to the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki. Any form of registration that may identify a patient must be excluded from the content of the paper. When clinical images of patients are submitted it is the responsibility of the authors to obtain, prior to submission, full informed consent by the patient for the use of the photographs, and to ensure that full anonymity is preserved.

Publication Ethics
We subscribe to the recommendations of the Committee on Publication Ethics on publication ethics guidelines. The manuscript should be an original work (we do not accept manuscripts that were previously published (either in full or partial)) and can’t be submitted to other journals while in review with us. The submitted manuscript should contain no material, instruction or statements that can cause harm, or infringe upon the rights or the privacy of others. The work included in the accepted manuscript should respect general principles of good scientific practice, such as maintaining professional standards, documenting results, rigorously questioning all findings, and honestly attributing any contributions made by partners, competitors and predecessors. Duplicate submissions, Redundant Publication, Plagiarism, Citation Manipulation,
Data Fabrication and Inadequate Authorship Attribution will result in the rejection of the manuscript (retraction if the manuscript was already published) and interdiction of the 1st and corresponding authors to submit manuscripts to any journal published by Applied Systems srl for a period of at least 5 years.
• All conflict of interests related to the research work, as well as the financial support have to be recognized and disclosed in the manuscript.
• All individuals with a significant scientific contribution to the manuscript have to be included as authors and informed of / agreed with the terms and conditions of this agreement
• All non-scientific contributors (such as those providing reagents) should be included in the Acknowledgements section of the manuscript
• The corresponding author will take the responsibility for any inadequate practice, such as plagiarism; our journals, editors, reviewers and publishing house can’t be made responsible for any inadequate practice performed by authors
Our Editors reserve the right to reject a paper on ethical grounds.

Retractions
• At suggestions of the Editor/Editorial Board, any already published article can be retracted on either ethical or scientific backgrounds. We are following the Committee on Publication Ethics’ guidlines (COPE’s guidelines), published here.
Scientific background: the Editors should have “clear evidence that findings are unreliable, either as a result of misconduct or honest erros”
Ethical background: “the findings have previously been published elsewhere without proper crossreferencing, permission or justification”, “it constitutes plagiarism” or “it represents unethical research”.
“Retracted articles should be clearly identified as such in all electronic sources (e.g. on the journal website and any bibliographic databases). Editors are responsible for ensuring that retractions are labelled in such a way that they are identified by bibliographic databases (which should also include a link to the retracted article). The retraction should appear on all electronic searches for the retracted publication.” (COPE guildlines)


C. CONFIDENTIALITY

Applied Systems will not share information about the unpublished manuscripts with any third party outside our editorial board and publishing group. The Editor(s) and reviewers of a manuscript have to keep the submitted manuscripts (and all the information related to them) confidential. Both the editor(s) and the reviewers must declare all the potential conflict of interest and be constructive and objective in their comments.
In concordance with the COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers, the reviewers should:
-    “only agree to review manuscripts for which they have the subject expertise”
-    “respect the confidentiality of peer review and not reveal any details of a manuscript”
-    “not use information obtained during the peer-review process for their own or any other person’s or organization’s advantage”
-    “declare all potential conflicting interests”
-    “be objective and constructive in their reviews, refraining from being hostile”
-    “acknowledge that peer review is largely a reciprocal endeavor”
-    “provide journal with personal and professional information that is accurate”
-    “recognize that impersonation of another individual during the review process is considered serious misconduct”
If the reviewers want to have someone else to help them with the review, they first have to obtain the approval from the editor.


D. AUTHORSHIP

All  individuals  with  a  significant  scientific  contribution (see ICMJE’s recommendations below )  to  the  manuscript  have  to  be  included  as authors and informed of / agreed with the terms and conditions of this agreement. All   non-scientific   contributors   (such   as   those   providing   reagents)   should   be   included   in   the Acknowledgements section of the manuscript. The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) defines the role of authors and contributors. Contributors “who have made substantive intellectual contributions to a paper are given credit as authors”. ICMJE recommends the following four criteria for characterizing the authorship:

“• Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND

 • Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND

 • Final approval of the version to be published; AND

 • Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.”

The corresponding author and the other authors of the manuscript are responsible for the selection of the contributors as authors based on the criteria mentioned above. This is not the responsibility of the editors of our journals. Moreover, “the corresponding author is the one individual who takes primary responsibility for communication with the journal during the manuscript submission, peer review, and publication process, and typically ensures that all the journal’s administrative requirements, such as providing details of authorship, ethics committee approval, clinical trial registration documentation, and gathering conflict of interest forms and statements, are properly completed, although these duties may be delegated to one or more coauthors”. These tasks may be delegated to other author(s) (ICMJE).


E. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

All other contributions to the article that are not considered as significant intellectual contributions (see Authorship section of the Editorial Policies) must be included in the Acknowledgements section with a brief description of their contribution. Moreover, the authors should disclose in this section all funding sources related to the accepted work.


F. CONFLICT OF INTEREST

The editor, reviewers and the authors of a manuscript have to disclose if they have any conflict of/competing interests (either financial or nonfinancial). The authors’ conflict of interest statement is included within their manuscript. If the authors do not have any conflicts of interest, the accepted manuscript will include the following statement: “The authors declare no conflicts of interest”.
“A conflict of interest is a set of circumstances that creates a risk that professional judgement or actions regarding a primary interest will be unduly influenced by a secondary interest." “Primary interest refers to the principal goals of the profession or activity, such as the protection of clients, the health of patients, the integrity of research, and the duties of public office. Secondary interest includes not only financial gain but also such motives as the desire for professional advancement and the wish to do favors for family and friends, but conflict of interest rules usually focus on financial relationships because they are relatively more objective, fungible, and quantifiable. The secondary interests are not treated as wrong in themselves, but become objectionable when they are believed to have greater weight than the primary interests” (Acocella, N. and Di Bartolomeo, G. and Piacquadio, P.G. [2009], "Conflict of interest, (implicit) coalitions and Nash policy games", in: Economics Letters, 105: 303-305)


G. REFERENCES

All ideas presented in the manuscript that come from external sources must be accordingly cited. We acknowledge that the authors usually build their work on their previous findings and they have to be cited in the submitted manuscript. However, the authors should avoid citing with predilection their own articles. Moreover, the authors should not cite sources that do not read (the validity of the cited sources have to be established), advertising materials, and should try to cite the main experimental work instead of the subsequent published reviews.


H. RESEARCH INVOLVING HUMAN SUBJECTS and MATERIAL, and CLINICAL DATASETS

Manuscripts that include research involving human subjects must contain details on the  approval obtained for the protocol from the Ethics Committee of the institution in which the research was conducted (or an appropriate Ethics Committee).
The authors have to respect the right for privacy of the participants in the study. An informed consent has to be obtained by the authors before the study is performed and a statement must be included in the Acknowledgements or Methods sections confirming that informed consent was obtained from all subjects, and that the research was carried out according  to  the  World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki. If the informed consent was not obtained, the authors have to explain why. The authors have to also prove that the privacy of the participants is not affected.


I. RESEARCH INVOLVING ANIMAL STUDIES

Manuscripts that include research involving animals must follow the recommendation of the ICLA (International Council for Laboratory Animal Science) - Ethics and Animal Welfare Committee and should contain a statement on the appropriateness of the animal procedures/approval obtained for the employed protocol from the Ethics Committee of the institution in which the research was conducted (or an appropriate Ethics Committee).

Examples of such statements in our already published articles:

-          “All  animal  experiments  and study  protocols  were  approved  by  local  authorities, complying  with  German  animal  protection  laws (AZ 50.203.2-AC 37, 26/05).” Curaj A et al., Discoveries,  2015, April-June; 3(2): e45. DOI: 10.15190/d.2015.37

-          “Animal experiments were approved by local authoritis and complied with animal protection statutes" Schuh A et al, Discoveries 2014, Jan-Mar; 2(1): e9. DOI:  10.15190/d.2014.1


J. DATA AVAILABILITY AND REPOSITORIES

All data that is important for the conclusions of the manuscript has to be included in either the main body of the manuscript or in the Supplementary Information (which can contain an unlimited amount of data in any form the authors consider appropriate for easy accessibility, including 2D or 3D movies, power point slides, pictures, tables and text. We also encourage the use of the many available repositories for data deposition. Check Nature’s, NIH’s or BMC Central’s lists of repositories.


K. CORRECTIONS

All changes made to a manuscript affecting its scientific or non-scientific content, including any change to the authorship, will be corrected by the publication of an Erratum, linked to the original article and indexed. These changes should be approved by all authors and the editor.


L. RETRACTIONS

At suggestions of the Editor/Editorial Board, any already published article can be retracted on either ethical or scientific backgrounds. We are following the Committee on Publication Ethics’ guidlines (COPE’s guidelines), published here.
Scientific background: the Editors should have “clear evidence that findings are unreliable, either as a result of misconduct or honest erros”
Ethical background: “the findings have previously been published elsewhere without proper crossreferencing, permission or justification”, “it constitutes plagiarism” or “it represents unethical research”.
“Retracted articles should be clearly identified as such in all electronic sources (e.g. on the journal website and any bibliographic databases). Editors are responsible for ensuring that retractions are labelled in such a way that they are identified by bibliographic databases (which should also include a link to the retracted article). The retraction should appear on all electronic searches for the retracted publication.” (COPE guildlines)


M. RECOMMENDATIONS, APPRECIATIONS, CRITIQUES AND CONCERNS

Any inquiry, recommendation, critique and/or complain should be sent to the Editorial Board by e-mail at info@discoveriesjournals.org
Applied Systems and the Editorial Board are committed to respond to, and address them as soon as possible.


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News & Events Latest news from our journals.

  • March 2017 | PubMed inclusion News!

    Discoveries successfully passed the Scientific Quality Review by NLM-NIH for PubMedCentral and PubMed indexing (March 2017). This is the first and the most important step towards PubMedCentral and PubMed indexing! The second (last) step is the Technical Review, which should be faster and without problems.

  • April 2016 | Faster Peer-Review

    Starting on April 13th, all articles selected for a peer-review will receive the post peer-review decision within 10 days. The initial pre-screening time will remain the same (48h from the submission of the manuscript). This decision will significantly accelerate the publication, with no effect on the quality of the peer-review process.

  • February 2016 | Manuscript submission

    Discoveries is commited to excellence, quality and high editorial standards. We are receiving an increasing number of manuscripts for which the identity of the authors/corresponding author can't be verified. Please NOTE that ALL these articles were and will be immediately REJECTED. Indicating an institutional email address is the easiest way to overcome this problem! Moreover, we do not accept any pressure on our editorial board to accept a manuscript. This results in a prompt rejection of the article.

    Editorial Policies
  • January 2016 |Discoveries-AIM

    After reaching all proposed milestones until now (including being indexed by Google Scholar in 2014), Discoveries' next Aim is PubMed indexing of all its articles (already published and upcoming). There will be no charge for the submission or publication of articles in Discoveries before PubMed indexing.

  • August 2015 | Discoveries - on PubMed

    We are happy to announce that our first Discoveries articles were included in PMC and PubMed. More articles (submitted by NIH funded articles) are now processed for being included.

    Discoveries articles now on PubMed
  • April 2015 | Special Issue

    DISCOVERIES publish the SPECIAL ISSUE entitled "INFLAMMATION BETWEEN DEFENSE AND DISEASE: Impact on Tissue Repair and Chronic Sickness".

    Special Issue on "Inflammation"
  • 2015 | Ischemia Collection

    DISCOVERIES launched a call for papers for a Collection of Articles with focus on "ISCHEMIA". If you are interested to submit a manuscript, please contact us at info@discoveriesjournals.org

  • October 2014 | Special Issue

    DISCOVERIES launched a call for papers, for the SPECIAL ISSUE entitled "INFLAMMATION BETWEEN DEFENSE AND DISEASE: Impact on Tissue Repair and Chronic Sickness".

  • September 2014 | Special Issue

    DISCOVERIES just publish the SPECIAL ISSUE entitled "CELL SECRETION & MEMBRANE FUSION" in September 2014. Initially scheduled for publication between October 2014-March 2015, this issue was successfully published earlier than scheduled. 

    Special Issue
  • April 2014 | Indexed by Google Scholar

    All our published articles are now indexed by Google Scholar! Current citations for each individual article published in either Discoveries or Discoveries Reports are also shown. First citations to Discoveries articles are included! Search for the article's title or the authors:

    Google Scholar Search

  • July 2013 | Manuscript Submission

    Submit your manuscript FREE, FAST and EASY ! (in less than 1 minute)
    There are NO fees for the manuscript submission or publishing of the accepted manuscripts.

    Read more

  • July 2013 | DISCOVERIES

    We are now ACCEPTING MANUSCRIPTS for publishing in DISCOVERIES. We aim to publish a small number of high impact experimental articles & reviews (around 40/year) to maintain a high impact factor. Domains of interest: all areas related to Medicine, Biology and Chemistry ...

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  • July 2013 | DISCOVERIES REPORTS

    We are now ACCEPTING MANUSCRIPTS for DISCOVERIES REPORTS, publishing inovative and important research findings from all areas related to Medicine, Biology and Chemistry. We are also accepting experimental articles that validate/invalidate highly used reagents in current publications (ex. antibodies) and selected articles presenting negative data with impact and of wide scientific interest ...

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