Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Ethical policies on animal experiments are not compromised by whether a journal is freely accessible or charges for publication

  • S. A. Rands (a1)

Abstract

The advent of the open access (OA) movement in publishing has been instrumental in causing a shift in the accessibility of research findings published in academic journals. The adoption of OA and other online publication models means that the results of scientific research published in journals using a free access (FA) framework are now available, free of charge, to anyone with access to the Internet. FA journals typically require a payment from the authors of a manuscript, which has raised concerns about the quality of work published in them; accepting payment from an author may compromise a journal’s acceptance criteria. This study addresses whether journal policy on the treatment of animals is influenced by whether a journal follows a FA publishing model, and whether a requirement to pay for publication has an influence. A random sample of 332 biomedical journals listed in the ISI Web of Knowledge and Directory of Open Access Journals databases were assessed for whether they had an ethical policy on publishing animal studies, and what form of publication framework they used (103 of the journals followed a FA framework; 101 charged in some way for publication). Only 135 (40.7%) of the journals surveyed demanded that submissions comply with a pre-defined ethical stance. FA journals are just as likely to have an ethical policy on the treatment and presentation of animal studies as ‘traditional’, non-FA journals (significance of there being a difference: P = 0.98), and there is no relationship between policy and whether an author is required to pay for publication (significance of there being a difference: P = 0.57). Older journals are more likely to have an ethical policy (P = 0.03). There is, therefore, no obvious compromise shown by FA journals in the explicit policies on reporting studies involving animals. However, since anyone can read published FA studies online, FA journals that do not have an explicit policy about publishing animal research are urged to consider adopting one.

Copyright

Corresponding author

References

Hide All
Alfaro, V 2005. Specification of laboratory animal use in scientific articles: current low detail in the journals’ instructions for authors and some proposals. Methods and Findings in Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology 27, 495502.
American Physiological Society 2002. Guiding principles for research involving animals and human beings. American Journal of Physiology – Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology 283, R281R283.
Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour/Animal Behavior Society 2006. Guidelines for the treatment of animals in behavioural research and teaching. Animal Behaviour 71, 245253.
Bagley, SC, White, H, Golomb, BA 2001. Logistic regression in the medical literature: standards for use and reporting, with particular attention to one medical domain. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 54, 979985.
Benos, DJ, Fabres, J, Farmer, J, Gutierrez, JP, Hennessy, K, Kosek, D, Lee, JH, Olteanu, D, Russell, T, Shaikh, F, Wang, K 2005. Ethics and scientific publication. Advances in Physiological Education 29, 5974.
Boisvert, DPJ 1997. Editorial policies and animal welfare. In Animal alternatives, welfare and ethics (ed. LFM van Zuthphen and M Balls), pp. 399404. Elsevier, Amsterdam.
Buck, V 2007. Who will start the 3Rs ball rolling for animal welfare? Nature 446, 856.
Canessa, E, Zennaro, M 2008. Science dissemination using Open Access. ICTP Science Dissemination Unit, Trieste. Retrieved May 21, 2009, from http://sdu.ictp.it/openaccess/book.html
Committee on Publication Ethics 2008. A code of conduct for editors of biomedical journals. Retrieved September 24, 2008, from http://www.publicationethics.org.uk/guidelines/code
Festing, MFW, van Zuthphen, LFM 1997. Guidelines for reviewing manuscripts on studies involving live animals. Synopsis of the workshop. In Animal alternatives, welfare and ethics (ed. LFM van Zuthphen and M Balls), pp. 405410. Elsevier, Amsterdam.
Gannon, WL, Sikes, RS; the Animal Care and Use Committee of the American Society of Mammalogists 2007. Guidelines of the American Society of Mammalogists for the use of wild mammals in research. Journal of Mammalogy 88, 809823.
Gomez, LM, Conlee, KM 2008. An analysis of reporting pain and distress recognition and alleviation in scientific journal publications. Alternatives to Animal Testing and Experimentation 14, 171177.
Harrell, FE 2003. Design: S functions for biostatistical/epidemiologic modeling, testing, estimation, validation, graphics, and prediction. Retrieved September 24, 2008, from http://biostat.mc.vanderbilt.edu/s/Design.html
Hernández-Borges, AA, Cabrera-Rodríguez, R, Montesdeoca-Melián, A, Martínez-Pineda, B, Torres-Álvarez de Arcaya, ML, Jiménez-Sosa, A 2006. Awareness and attitude of Spanish medical authors to open access publishing and the ‘author pays’ model. Journal of the Medical Library Association 94, 449451.
Higgins, A 2001. Animal research and publication ethics. Veterinary Journal 162, 8183.
Hubbard, C, Tamber, PS, Lin, V, Furler, L, Duckett, S 2005. The implications of open access publishing for the medical community. Evidence-based Healthcare and Public Health 9, 371373.
International Committee of Medical Journal Editors 2007. Uniform requirements for manuscripts submitted to biomedical journals: writing and editing for biomedical publication (October 2007 update). Retrieved September 24, 2008, from http://www.icmje.org
Jimenez, C 2007. Animal-welfare section in papers would be a burden. Nature 447, 259.
Liesegang, TJ, Schachat, AP, Albert, DM 2005. The Open Access initiative in scientific and biomedical publishing. American Journal of Ophthalmology 139, 156167.
Liyanage, SS, MacIntyre, CR 2006. Do financial factors such as author charges and industry funding impact on the nature of published research in infectious diseases? Health Information and Libraries Journal 23, 214222.
Marsh, H, Kenchington, R 2004. The role of ethics in experimental marine biology and ecology. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 300, 514.
Matarese, V 2008. Relationship between quality and editorial leadership of biomedical research journals: a comparative study of Italian and UK journals. PLoS ONE 3, e2512.
Minteer, BA, Collins, JP 2005. Ecological ethics: building a new tool kit for ecologists and biodiversity managers. Conservation Biology 19, 18031812.
Olsson, IAS, Hansen, AK, Sandøe, P 2008. Animal welfare and the refinement of neuroscience research methods – a case study of Huntingdon’s disease models. Laboratory Animals 42, 277283.
Portaluppi, F, Touitou, Y, Smolensky, MH 2008. Ethical and methodological standards for laboratory and medical biological rhythm research. Chronobiology International 25, 9991016.
R Development Core Team 2008. R: a language and environment for statistical computing. R Foundation for Statistical Computing, Vienna.
Russell, WMS, Burch, RL 1959. The principles of humane experimental technique. Methuen, London.
Schroter, S, Tite, L, Smith, R 2005. Perceptions of open access publishing: interviews with journal authors. British Medical Journal 330, 756.
Scientific Affairs Board of the British Psychological Society’s Standing Advisory Committee on the Welfare of Animals in Psychology 2001. Guidelines for psychologists working with animals. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology 54B, 8191.
Scott-Lichter, D; the Editorial Policy Committee 2006. CSE’s White Paper on promoting integrity in scientific journal publications. Council of Science Editors, Reston, VA.
Sherwin, CM 2007. Animal welfare: reporting details is good science. Nature 448, 251.
Smaje, LH, Smith, JA, Combes, RD, Ewbank, R, Gregory, JA, Jennings, M, Moore, GJ, Morton, DB 1998. Advancing refinement of laboratory animal use. Laboratory Animals 32, 137142.
Wellcome Trust 2004. Costs and business models in scientific research publishing. Wellcome Trust, London.
Working Committee for the Biological Characterization of Laboratory Animals/GV-SOLAS 1985. Guidelines for specification of animals and husbandry methods when reporting the results of animal experiments. Laboratory Animals 19, 106108.
Würbel, H 2007. Publications should include an animal-welfare section. Nature 446, 257.

Keywords

Related content

Powered by UNSILO

Ethical policies on animal experiments are not compromised by whether a journal is freely accessible or charges for publication

  • S. A. Rands (a1)

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed.