Researchers should conduct their research – from research proposal to publication – in line with best practices and codes of conduct of relevant professional bodies and/or national and international regulatory bodies.
Xiehe Yixue Zazhi abides by COPE’s principles on how to deal with potential acts of misconduct. Requirements for all categories of articles should conform to the “Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals,” developed by the ICMJE (www.icmje.org).
The corresponding author should list all authors and their contributions to the work. Each author must have contributed sufficiently to the intellectual content of the submission. The corresponding author must confirm that he or she has had full access to the data in the study and final responsibility for the decision to submit for publication. To qualify as a contributing author, one must meet ALL of the following criteria:
1. Conceived and/or designed the work that led to the submission, acquired data, and/or played an important role in interpreting the results.
2. Drafted or revised the manuscript.
3. Approved the final version.
4. Agreed 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.
Contributions by individuals who made direct contributions to the work but do not meet all of the above criteria should be noted in the Acknowledgments section of the manuscript. Medical writers and industry employees can be contributors. Their roles, affiliations, and potential competing interests should be included in the author list or noted in the Acknowledgments and/or Contributors section concurrent with their contribution to the work submitted. Signed statements from any medical writers or editors declaring that they have given permission to be named as an author, as a contributor, or in the Acknowledgments section is also required. Failure to acknowledge these contributors can be considered inappropriate, which conflicts with the journal’s editorial policy.
The primary affiliation for each author should be the institution where the majority of their work was done. If an author has subsequently moved, the current address may also be stated.
Changes to authorship
It is the corresponding author’s responsibility to ensure that the author list is correct at the point of first submission. Requests to change the authorship (such as to include or exclude an author, change an author's name or contribution) must be accompanied by a letter signed by all authors to show they concur with the change. New authors must also confirm that they fully comply with the journal's authorship requirements. Requests for addition or removal of authors as a result of authorship disputes (after acceptance) are honoured after formal notification by the institute or independent body and/or when there is agreement between all authors. Changes to the authorship will not be allowed once the manuscript has been accepted for publication.
Anonymity & Confidentiality
Editors, authors and reviewers are required to keep confidential all details of the editorial and peer review process on submitted manuscripts. Unless otherwise declared as a part of open peer review, the peer review process is confidential and conducted anonymously. All details about submitted manuscripts are kept confidential and no comments are issued to outside parties or organizations about manuscripts under consideration or if they are rejected. Editors are restricted to making public comments on a published article’s content and their evaluation.
Upon accepting an invitation to evaluate a manuscript, reviewers must keep the manuscript and associated data confidential, and not redistribute them without the journal’s permission. If a reviewer asks a colleague to assist in assessing a manuscript, confidentiality must be ensured and their names must be provided to the journal with the final report.
We deplore any attempt by authors to confront reviewers or try to determine their identities. Reviewers should be aware that it is our policy to keep their names confidential and that we do our utmost to ensure this confidentiality. We cannot, however, guarantee to maintain this confidentiality in the face of a successful legal action to disclose identity.
Regardless of whether a submitted manuscript is eventually published, correspondence with the journal, referees’ reports, and other confidential material must not be published, disclosed, or otherwise publicised without prior written consent.
Correspondence with the Journal
The corresponding author is solely responsible for communicating with the journal and with managing communication between co-authors. It is this author's responsibility to inform all co-authors of any matters arising and to ensure such matters are dealt with promptly. Before submission, the corresponding author ensures that all authors are included in the author list, its order agreed upon by all authors, and that all are aware that the manuscript was submitted. After acceptance for publication, proofs are e-mailed to this corresponding author who should circulate the proof to all co-authors and coordinate corrections among them. The corresponding author is responsible for the accuracy of all content in the proof, in particular that names of co-authors are present and correctly spelled, and that addresses and affiliations are current.
Communication with the Media
Material submitted must not be discussed with the media. If a paper is particularly newsworthy, the press release will be sent to our new media editor in advance of publication with an embargo that forbids any coverage of the manuscript, or the findings of the manuscript, until the time and date clearly stated. Authors whose papers are scheduled for publication may also arrange their own publicity (for instance through their institution’s press offices), but they must strictly adhere to our press embargo and are advised to coordinate their own publicity with our new media editor.
If a table or figure has been published before, the authors must obtain written permission to reproduce the material in both print and electronic formats from the copyright owner and submit it with the manuscript. This follows for illustrations and other materials taken from previously published works not in the public domain. The original source should be cited in the figure caption or table footnote.
Transparency and Ethics
In the interests of transparency and to help readers form their own judgments of potential bias, authors must declare whether or not there are any competing financial interests in relation to the work described. The corresponding author is responsible for submitting a competing financial interests statement on behalf of all authors of the paper. This statement must be included on the title page of the manuscript, as well as within the article before the References section listed under 'Competing Interests'.
In cases where the authors declare a competing financial interest, a statement to that effect is published as part of the article. If no such conflict exists, the statement will simply read that the authors have nothing to disclose.
For the purposes of this statement, competing interests are defined as those of a financial nature that, through their potential influence on behaviour or content, or from perception of such potential influences, could undermine the objectivity, integrity or perceived value of a publication. They can include any of the following:
● Funding: Research support (including salaries, equipment, supplies, reimbursement for attending symposia, and other expenses) by organizations that may gain or lose financially through this publication. The role of the funding body in the design of the study, collection and analysis of data and decision to publish should be stated.
● Employment: Recent (while engaged in the research project), present or anticipated employment by any organization that may gain or lose financially through this publication. This includes positions on an advisory board, board of directors, or other type of management relationship.
● Personal financial interests: Stocks or shares in companies that may gain or lose financially through publication; consultation fees or other forms of remuneration from organisations that may gain or lose financially.
● Patents: Holding, or currently applying for, patents, relating to the content of a manuscript; receiving reimbursement, fees, funding, or salary from an organization that holds or has applied for patents relating to the content of the manuscript.
The statement included in the submission must contain an explicit and unambiguous description of any potential competing interests, or lack thereof, for any of the authors as it relates to the subject of the report.
Studies involving animals and other human subjects
Research involving human subjects, human material, or human data must have been performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki and must have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee. A statement detailing this, including the name of the ethics committee and the reference number where appropriate, along with a statement confirming that informed consent was obtained from all subjects, must appear in all manuscripts reporting such research.
For primary research manuscripts reporting experiments on live vertebrates and/or higher invertebrates, the corresponding author must confirm that all experiments were performed in accordance with relevant guidelines and regulations. The manuscript must include in the Supplementary Information (methods) section (or, if brief, within of the print/online article at an appropriate place), a statement identifying the institutional and/or licensing committee approving the experiments
We recommend that authors adopt the proposal from the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) for publication of clinical trials, which requires registration in a public trials registry as a condition for publication. The clinical trial registration number should be included at the end of the abstract of the article. The clinical trial herein refers to any research project that prospectively assigns human subjects to intervention or comparison groups to study the cause-and-effect relationship between a medical intervention and a health outcome. Study designed for other purposes, such as to study pharmacokinetics or major toxicity (e.g. phaseⅠtrials) would be an exception. For further information, please visit www.icmje.org.Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) must adhere to the CONSORT statement, (CONsolidated Standards Of Reporting Trials) and submissions must be accompanied by a completed CONSORT checklist (uploaded as a related manuscript file).
The Editor may seek advice about submitted papers not only from technical reviewers but also on any aspect of a paper that raises concerns. These may include, for example, ethical issues or issues of data or materials access. Occasionally, concerns may also relate to the implications to society of publishing a paper, including threats to security. In such circumstances, advice will usually be sought simultaneously with the technical peer-review process. As in all publishing decisions, the ultimate decision whether to publish is the responsibility of the editor.
Xiehe Yixue Zazhi will follow the COPE guidelines outlining how to deal with cases of suspected misconduct. As part of the investigation, the journal may opt to do one or more of the following:
● suspend review or publication of a paper until the issue has been investigated and resolved;
● request additional information from the author, including original data or images or ethics committee or IRB approval;
● make inquiries of other titles believed to be affected;
● forward concerns to the author’s employer or person responsible for research governance at the author’s institution.
Plagiarism has been traditionally defined as “ the taking of words, images, ideas, etc. from an author and presenting them as one’s own “(American Association of University Professors, September/October, 1989). The original COPE guidelines on good publication practice (published in 1999) noted that ‘plagiarism ranges from the unreferenced use of others’ published ideas … to submission under “new” authorship of a complete paper, sometimes in a different language.’ Plagiarism includes the unattributed copying of another person’s data/findings, resubmission of an entire publication under another author’s name, verbatim copying of words of original material in the absence of any citation to the source material, or close copying (not quite verbatim, but changed only slightly from the original) of significant sections from another work(etc.).
Authors should ensure that the submissions are original works. Editors will scan each submitted manuscript with the help of Academic Misconduct Literature Check System of Science and Technology Periodicals (AMLC) which developed by China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI) to verify the originality of submitted manuscripts.
If there's any plagiarism in the manuscript, it will be rejected and the authors will be blacklisted.
Data Fabrication & Falsification
Falsification is the practice of altering research data with the intention of giving a false impression. This includes, but is not limited to, manipulating images, removing outliers or “inconvenient” results, or changing, adding or omitting data points. Fabrication is the practice of inventing data or results and recording and/or reporting them in the research record. Data falsification and fabrication call into question the integrity and credibility of data and the data record, and as such, they are among the most serious issues in scientific ethics.
Some manipulation of images is allowed to improve them for readability. Proper technical manipulation includes adjusting the contrast and/or brightness or colour balance if it is applied to the complete digital image (not parts of the image). The author should notify the Editor in the cover letter of any technical manipulation. Improper technical manipulation refers to obscuring, enhancing, deleting and/or introducing new elements into an image.
If there is suspicion of misconduct, the journal will carry out an investigation following COPE guidelines. Following an investigation, if the allegation raises valid concerns, the author will be contacted and given an opportunity to address the issue. If misconduct is established beyond reasonable doubt, this may result in the Editor implementing one of the following measures:
● If the article is still under consideration, it may be rejected and returned to the author.
● If the article has already been published online, depending on the nature and severity of the infraction, either an erratum will be published alongside the article or, in severe cases, complete retraction of the article will occur. The reason for the erratum or retraction must be given.
● In either case, the author’s institution or funding agency may be informed.
In cases where co-authors disagree about a correction or retraction, the editors will take advice from independent peer-reviewers and impose the appropriate measure, noting the dissenting author(s) in the text of the published version.