Scientific publishing

Effect Measure

Category archives for Scientific publishing

“Science-Based Medicine 101″: FAIL

Science Based Medicine is a site we highly recommend with experienced scientists and practitioners in charge. In other words, it’s run by adults. But scientists often disagree about things. This is apparently a secret to non-scientists and many reporters who assume that when two scientists disagree, one is lying or wrong. But it’s true nonetheless.…

Swine flu: pandemic pre-history

However this pandemic evolves, we are going to learn a lot about how pandemics evolve — or maybe even start. A paper just published online in Nature sets out a bit more of what we know about this pandemic strain (yes, we can officially refer to it that way now) and makes some observations about…

It is clear that if you want to get a so-so paper published in a top tier journal, the best way to do it is to write about a breaking medical news event and get there first. We saw this with avian influenza and SARS and now it’s being repeated with swine flu. The Scientist…

When the Wall Street Journal called attention to a claim that the Journal of the American Medical Association called a whistle-blower a “nobody” and a “nothing,” a claim JAMA denied, I didn’t know what to think. I was inclined to give JAMA the benefit of the doubt. Whatever dealings I’ve had (and they are few)…

My sciblings at Scienceblogs have done a pretty thorough fisking of the Andrew Wakefield affair.To recap breifly, a paper by Wakefield and others in The Lancet in 1998 raised an alarm that the widely used measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine was the cause of some cases of childhood autism and a chronic inflammatory bowel disease. The incriminated…

Apparent spread of transgenes from GM corn

In 2001 Ignacio Chapela, an ecologist from the University of California, Berkeley, and co-author David Quist published a highly controversial paper in Nature that appeared to show that genetically engineered genes used in genetically modified (GM) corn (maize) was spreading from GM cornfields in Mexico into traditional corn crops. This set off a firestorm where…

Endorsing Obama

As I write this the Obama-Biden ticket has been endorsed by 231 newspapers across the country, the McCain-Palin ticket by only 102 (see here for latest tally). The final Kerry-Bush score was 213 – 205. Most of us don’t really care that much about the newspaper endorsement bragging rights and I doubt it makes much…

Early yesterday morning I received an email from my publisher that the journal for which I am co-editor in chief has been sold. Our journal is one of 180 published by BioMedCentral (BMC), the largest open access scientific publisher. The business model of BMC and other open access publishers is to charge the author, not…

Why the Right Wing attacks science

If you want to see what difference environmental protection enforcement makes, just go to eastern Europe or the former Soviet Union. Or China. In the 1970s the US led the world in cleaning its environment and was consolidating its gains with well-staffed, motivated federal and state environment agencies. But that was then. Last weekend the…

If the Osama bin Laden Foundation or the Adoph Hitler Memorial Fund offered to support your scientific research — no strings attached — would you take the money? Remember, you are hoping to do good with your work, say, investigate a new cancer drug or a model of the cardiovascular system. Pure science but with…