bims-skolko Biomed news
on Scholarly communication
Issue of 2019‒01‒27
six papers selected by
Thomas Krichel
Open Library Society


  1. Dermatol Online J. 2018 Aug 15. pii: 13030/qt198587m9. [Epub ahead of print]24(8):
    Updyke KM, Niu W, St Claire C, Schlager E, Knabel M, Leader NF, Sacotte RM, Dunnick CA, Dellavalle RP.
      BACKGROUND: Financial relationships between editorial board members of peer-reviewed journals and pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturing companies can potentially lead to biases and loss of objectivity of the medical literature. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the potential financial conflicts of interest that exist among editorial board members of dermatology journals.METHODS: Editorial board members for 36 dermatology journals were identified and searched using the Open Payments database on the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services website. The total amount of general payments made to these physician editors were collected and stratified using a tier system: 1) nothing reported, 2) >$0 and <$10,000, 3) >$10,000 and <$100,000, and 4) >$100,000.
    RESULTS: We identified 551 editors from 36 dermatology journals for use in our analysis. Some form of general payment was made to 87% of these physicians (480 of 551). Four journals had >25% of their editorial staff receiving >$100,000.
    CONCLUSIONS: Financial relationships exist between editorial board members of dermatology journals and pharmaceutical/medical device manufacturing companies, which could lead to financial conflicts of interest. Publications coming from journals with highly paid physician editors have more potential to be biased.
  2. PeerJ. 2019 ;7 e6232
    Wiseman R, Watt C, Kornbrot D.
      The recent 'replication crisis' in psychology has focused attention on ways of increasing methodological rigor within the behavioral sciences. Part of this work has involved promoting 'Registered Reports', wherein journals peer review papers prior to data collection and publication. Although this approach is usually seen as a relatively recent development, we note that a prototype of this publishing model was initiated in the mid-1970s by parapsychologist Martin Johnson in the European Journal of Parapsychology (EJP). A retrospective and observational comparison of Registered and non-Registered Reports published in the EJP during a seventeen-year period provides circumstantial evidence to suggest that the approach helped to reduce questionable research practices. This paper aims both to bring Johnson's pioneering work to a wider audience, and to investigate the positive role that Registered Reports may play in helping to promote higher methodological and statistical standards.
    Keywords:  Methodology; Psychology; Publication bias; Registered reports; Replication
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.6232
  3. Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi. 2019 Jan 10. 40(1): 99-105
    Yan RH, Peng XX.
      Our study aimed to amplify and explain the items of statistical reporting requirements proposed by medical journals, and to improve the statistical reporting quality of medical articles. Statistical reporting requirements were obtained from the reporting standards published by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), the Enhancing the QUAlity and Transparency of Health Research (EQUATOR) network, and the editorial board of Chinese Medical Journal, etc. The items involved in statistical reporting requirements were summarized as issues of study design, statistical analysis, and interpretation of results. Each item was amplified based on cases of original articles. It is noticeable that the statistical reporting requirements of English medical journals generally referring to guidance documents, including "Recommendations for the conduct, reporting, editing, and publication of scholarly work in medical journals" proposed by the ICMJE, or the statements for different study types published by the EQUATOR network, where the statistical reporting of medical articles had been detailed specified. The statistical reporting requirements of Chinese medical journals, however, were usually stated by the editorial boards. Although the formats and contents of statistical analysis had been regulated, the requirements of Chinese medical journals were to some extent insufficient and should be enhanced in accordance with the international standards. In conclusion, the amplification and explanation of statistical reporting requirements were expected to help investigators understand the requirements for statistical reporting in medical researches, so as to effectively improve the quality of medical articles.
    Keywords:  Medical journals; Statistical reporting
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3760/cma.j.issn.0254-6450.2019.01.020
  4. Elife. 2019 Jan 23. pii: e44799. [Epub ahead of print]8
    Schekman R.
      As he prepares to step down as the Editor-in-Chief of eLife, Randy Schekman reflects on the origins of the journal, the eLife approach to peer review, and current challenges in scientific publishing.
    Keywords:  eLife; open access; peer review; research assessment; scientific publishing
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.44799