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  • Ethical Considerations

    Authorship. 

    All persons designed as “authors” should meet the criteria of the concept. Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take responsibility for its content. Authorship credit should be based on the following facts:

    1. substantial contribution to conception and design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data;
    2. drafting the article or reviewing and introducing fundamental changes in it;
    3. final approval of the version to be published.

    Acquisition of funding or collection of data, as well as general supervision of the research group alone does not constitute authorship.

    Editors has the right to request and publish information about the contributions of each person in writing the article.

    All contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be listed in the section “Acknowledgements”. The group of authors/contributors should jointly make the decision about the order in which their names are given.

    Conflict of Interests. 

    Conflict of interest concerning a particular manuscript exists when one of the participants of reviewing or publication process — an author, reviewer, or editor — has obligations that can influence his or her action (even if it is not really so). Financial relationships (such as, employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, and paid expert testimony) are the most easily identifiable conflicts of interest. However, conflicts can occur for other reasons, such as personal relationship, academic competition, and intellectual passion.

    All participants in the peer-review and publication process must disclose all conflicts of interests.

    When authors submit a manuscript, they are responsible for disclosing all financial and other relationship that might bias their work. Authors should identify all individuals and institutions, who provided financial assistance, as well as other financial and personal support. Authors should describe the role of the study sponsor(s), in study design; collection, analysis, and interpretation of data.

    Authors should provide editors with the names of persons they feel should not be asked to review a manuscript because of potential, usually professional, conflicts of interest.

    Reviewers must disclose to editors any conflicts of interests that could bias their opinions of the manuscript; they should recuse themselves from reviewing specific manuscripts if the potential for bias exists. In return, the editorial staff should have the possibility to judge the objectiveness of the review and decide whether to refuse the reviewer’s service.

    Editorial staff may use information disclosed in conflict-of-interest and financial-interest statements as a basis for editorial decisions.

    Editors who make final decisions about manuscripts must have no personal, professional, or financial interest/involvement in any of the issues they might judge. Other members of the editorial staff, if they participate in editorial decisions, must provide editors with a current description of their financial interests (as they might relate to editorial judgment) and recuse themselves from any decisions in which a conflict of interest exists.

    In addition, as the editors and authors should respect international standards for editors and authors of Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). A complete list of all the rules and requirements are available at this link.

    Observance of Patients’ Rights and Confidentiality. 

    Patients have a right to privacy that should not be violated without informed consent. Identifying information, including names, initials, hospital numbers, and case records, should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, and pedigrees unless the information is essential for scientific purposes and the patient (or parent or guardian) gives written informed consent for publication. Authors should disclose to these patients whether any potential identifiable material might be available via Internet as well as in print after publication. Authors should submit written informed consent of the patient to the journal, and it should be indicated in the published article.

    Protection of Human Subjects and Animals in Research. 

    When reporting experiments on human subjects, authors should indicate whether the procedures followed were in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentations (institutional and national) and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975, as reviewed in 2000. If doubt exists whether the research was conducted in accordance with the Helsinki Declaration, the authors must explain the rationale for their approach and demonstrate that the institutional review body explicitly approved the doubtful aspects of the study. When reporting experiments on animals, authors should indicate whether the institutional and national guide for the care and use of laboratory animals was followed.

    Publication of Negative Findings. 

    Many studies with negative results are actually indecisive. The possibility of indecisive results publication is specially considered by the editorial staff; as such articles are frequently of no biomedical value and require the journal’s resources.

    Originality and Plagiarism

    The authors should ensure that they have written entirely original works, and if the authors have used the work and/or words of others that this has been appropriately cited or quoted.

    Redundant Publications. 

    The editorial staff will not consider manuscripts that are simultaneously being considered by other journals, as well as the papers on work that has already been reported in large part in a published article or is contained in another paper that has been submitted or accepted for publication elsewhere, in print or in electronic media. This policy does not preclude the journal from considering a paper that has been rejected by another journal, or a complete report that follows publication of a preliminary report, such as an abstract or poster displayed at a professional meeting.

    Correspondence. 

    If necessary the readers can send their comments, questions and pointed remarks for the published articles and their comments will be published. The corresponding authors can respond to the remarks if they wish.

    * * *

    Detailed clauses of “Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals” established by International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, ethical principles in particular, are located at our site (translated version of 2006), and original version (English version of 2010) can be found at www.ICMJE.org.