The Biomedical Sciences and Clinical Medicine (BSCM) is a peer-reviewed journal that is dedicated to upholding the most stringent standards of publication ethics. Our editorial policies and publication ethics conform to the core practices of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and the recommendations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE). Manuscripts are evaluated based on their relevance to the journal, originality, quality, and the extent to which they contribute to the body of evidence surrounding significant issues. Our editorial decisions are never influenced by commercial interests, personal relationships, personal agendas, or findings that challenge established beliefs in a credible way.
Allegations of Research Misconduct
Ensuring the integrity of research and scholarly communication is of paramount importance at the BSCM Journal. We maintain rigorous standards in all aspects of our publication process, including citation practices, plagiarism prevention, consent for publication, and confidentiality. Our commitment to upholding ethical conduct is reflected in the following guidelines:
For the statement in the manuscript, the new ideas or findings from external sources of information that are not from the author should be cited. Authors should ensure that their citations are accurate, appropriate, and relevant. We require citation of the primary literature wherever appropriate. The author’s references should not be biased toward a particular author, institution/organization, research group, or publication. Authors should not copy references from other publications if they have not read the cited work. Authors should not use an excessive number of citations to support one point. The authors should not cite advertisements or advertorial material. An author must avoid any kind of citation manipulation, as it is considered a form of misconduct. Authors should not engage in excessive self-citation of their own work. While self-citation is permitted, it should be used judiciously and not as a means of citation manipulation.
Plagiarism, defined as the act of using someone else’s ideas or words without proper attribution, is strictly prohibited. If plagiarism is detected or suspected during the screening or reviewing process, the manuscript will be rejected or returned to the authors without further consideration. In cases of post-publication detection of plagiarism, BSCM will communicate with the authors, assess the situation, and take appropriate action, including issuing corrections or retracting the paper if necessary.
BSCM utilizes Turnitin, supported by Chiang Mai University, to screen submitted manuscripts for originality. Plagiarism may be suspected if the percentage of similarity is higher than 25%. BSCM expects that its editors, editorial board members, and peer-reviewers will be vigilant in their evaluation of journal submissions and will notify the journal about any plagiarism suspected or identified.
Data fabrication is the "making of data or results". Data falsification means “the manipulation of research materials, equipment or processes, or the modification or omission of data or results in such a way that research is not accurately represented in the research record”. With regard to image manipulation, it is possible to technically improve the image for reading. Proper technical operation refers to adjusting the contrast, brightness, and color balance when applied to the entire digital image (not parts of the image). Any technical manipulation by the author must be notified in the cover letter to the editor of the journal before submission. The incorrect technical manipulation refers to the removal, enhancement, deletion, and/or introduction of new elements into the image.
Consent for Publication
For all manuscripts that include details, images, or videos relating to a person, written informed consent for the publication of these details must be obtained from that person, or in the case of children, their parents/legal guardians. The manuscript must include a statement that written informed consent for the publication of those details, images, or videos was obtained.
Maintaining confidentiality is of utmost importance to BSCM. All submitted manuscripts and communications with authors and reviewers are treated with strict confidentiality. Reviewers are required to respect the confidentiality of the peer-review process and not reveal any details of a manuscript or its review, during or after the peer-review process, beyond the information released by the journal. The identities of the reviewers will not be released. If the reviewer wishes to involve a colleague in the review process, they should obtain permission from the journal. When the report is returned, the editor should be informed of the names of any individuals who assisted in the review process. Manuscripts are shared only within BSCM, except in suspected misconduct cases.
In the event that a journal’s publisher or editors are made aware of any allegation of research misconduct relating to a published article in the BSCM Journal, the publisher or editor shall follow COPE’s guidelines in dealing with allegations.
Authorship and Contribution
An author must meet the following four criteria:
- Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND
- Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND
- Final approval of the version to be published; AND
- Agreement 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.
BSCM encourages authors to specify the contributions of each individual who participated in the submitted work. By using the initials of first name and family name to specify each author, a sample author statement is:
A.B.: Conceptualization, Methodology, Software, Writing – Review & Editing; C.D.:
Data curation, Writing- Original draft preparation; E.F.: Visualization, Investigation;
G.H.: Supervision; I.J.: Software, Validation.
BSCM journals follow the COPE guidelines for changes in authorship. It requires that any changes to the author list after submission, including additions, deletions, or changes in ordering, must be agreed upon by all authors and must be approved by the journal. Requests for changes must come from the corresponding author and include an explanation for the change. If authorship issues are identified after publication, corrections may be made. In case of an authorship dispute, the journal will not intervene and will instead refer the issue to the authors’ institution.
Clinical Trials Registration
The ICMJE adopted the WHO definition of a clinical trial: “any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects on health outcomes.” Health-related interventions include any intervention used to modify a biomedical or health-related outcome (for example, drugs, surgical procedures, devices, behavioral treatments, dietary interventions, and process-of-care changes). Health outcomes include any biomedical or health-related measures obtained in patients or participants, including pharmacokinetic measures and adverse events. We encourage that all clinical trials be registered with a primary national clinical trial registration site, such as https://www.thaiclinicaltrials.org/or other sites accredited by the WHO, as listed at http://www.who.int/ictrp/en/ before subject recruitment. The name of the trial register and clinical trial registration number are included in the paper.
An author may post the submitted version of a manuscript on a suitable pre-print server, where posting on these platforms is not considered a duplication of publication. When submitting a preprint to our journal, authors should include information about preprint posting, such as preprint server name, URL link, DOI, and other details in their cover letter. After the article is officially published in our journal after a peer-review process, the authors should update the preprints with an acknowledgment of its official publication in our journal, including a URL link. Authors may also choose to remove the preprints after they have been officially published in our journal.
Permission for use of copyrighted materials from other sources, including re-published, adapted, modified, or partial tables from the internet, must be obtained. It is the author’s responsibility to acquire the licenses, follow any citation instructions requested by third-party rights holders, and cover any supplementary charges.
Standards of Reporting
Authors are encouraged to use the relevant research reporting guidelines for the study type provided by the EQUATOR (Enhancing the Quality and Transparency of Health Research) Network when preparing their manuscript. The EQUATOR mission is to achieve accurate, complete, and transparent reporting of all health research studies to support research reproducibility and usefulness. Authors should adhere to these guidelines. The commonly used reporting guidelines are:
- Randomized controlled trials (RCTs): CONSORT (Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials)—for clinical trials.
- Systematic reviews and meta-analyses: PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items of Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses) for systematic reviews and meta-analyses.
- Observational studies in epidemiology: STROBE (Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology)—for cross-sectional, case-control, and cohort studies.
- Qualitative research: SRQR (Standards for Reporting Qualitative Research)—for all studies involving qualitative research; COREQ (COnsolidated criteria for REporting Qualitative research) Checklist.
- Economic evaluations: CHEERS (Consolidated Health Economic Evaluation Reporting Standards).
- Animal pre-clinical studies: ARRIVE (Animal Research: Reporting of In Vivo Experiments)—for all studies involving laboratory animals.
- Guidelines for case reports: CARE (The CAse REport) — for case reports.
Responsible Reporting of Research Involving Humans or Animals
- Appropriate approval, licensing, or registration should be obtained before the research begins and details should be provided in the report (e.g. Institutional Review Board, Research Ethics Committee approval, national licensing authorities for the use of animals).
- Ethics statements should be provided in the “Materials and Methods” section of the manuscript.
- Where applicable, BSCM requires that authors provide an Ethics statement that details the relevant ethical standards.
- For medical research involving human subjects, the ethical statements should be adequate to ensure that the planning, conduct, and reporting of human research are in accordance with the latest version of the Helsinki Declaration.
Conflict of Interests
- In the interest of transparency, BSCM asks authors to disclose all relationships/activities/interests.
- related to the work reported in the manuscript without a time limit
- not related to the work reported in the manuscript in the past 36 months
- Peer reviewers, editors, and editorial board members must consider and disclose their relationships and activities when fulfilling their roles in the process of article review and publication.
When submitting a manuscript, we encourage the authors to share the data and other research work supporting the results in the paper as a supplementary file of the manuscript or in a publicly available data repository with a statement linking to the data added after Acknowledgments. If this is not possible (limited to ethics, privacy, or confidentiality issues), authors are encouraged to make a statement explaining why it cannot be shared.
Open Access, Copyright, and Licensing of the Articles Published in BSCM
All articles published in the BSCM journal are fully open-access and made available free of charge to the reader under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY 4.0) license. Under this license, authors retain ownership of the copyright for their publications and grant the journal the right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under an Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license that allows others to share copy, and redistribute the material in any medium or format and adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially, with an acknowledgment of the work’s authorship and initial publication in this journal.
To ensure the permanence of all publications, BSCM journal permanently archives its publications at https://osf.io/kzrfx/ for the purposes of digital preservation.
Post-Publication Discussions, Correction, Retraction, and Expressions of Concern
The BSCM journal invites readers to engage in debate and discussions of its articles by submitting letters to the editor. The Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) guidelines will be followed when handling corrections, revisions, or retractions of articles after publication.
Corrections should be submitted for any scientifically relevant errors in published articles. Any changes after publication that affect the scientific accuracy of published information, as well as the reputation of the authors or of the journal, are announced using a “Correction”. Any matters related to this should be addressed to the editors via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Every change may be evaluated by the academic editors, who will determine the impact of the change and decide on the appropriate course of action. In cases where co-authors disagree, the editors will take advice from independent peer-reviewers and impose the appropriate amendment, noting the dissenting author(s) in the text of the published version. Publication may take various forms at the discretion of the editor. Amendments are published in the article categories “Addenda,” “Erratum,” “Corrigendum,” and “Retraction.” This can be in the form of a correction notice, an expression of concern, a retraction, or, in rare circumstances, a removal. A correction statement will be published in the next available issue and will be linked to the original published paper. The corrigendum or erratum will appear as a new article in the journal and will cite the original published article. All are defined below:
- Addenda: An addendum is a notification of an amendment to the information found to be crucial to the reader’s understanding of a significant part of the published contribution. A hyperlink to the addendum will also be added to the original publication, but the original paper does not need to be updated.
- Erratum or publisher correction: An erratum refers to a notification for the correction of an important error introduced to the article by the publisher. Scientifically relevant formatting issues that require an erratum might include missing or unclear figures or errors introduced during proofreading (e.g., missing text). Minor errors that do not affect readability or meaning (e.g., spelling or grammatical errors) do not qualify for an erratum. All authors should proofread the final version carefully.
- Corrigendum or author correction: A corrigendum is a notification of the correction of a significant error made by the authors of the article that affects the publication record, the scientific integrity of the paper, the reputation of the authors, or both. A corrigendum refers to a change to the article that the author wishes to publish at any time after acceptance.
- Article retraction: Retraction is considered when there is research and publication misconduct (e.g., fabricated data, manipulated images, plagiarism, duplicate publication, etc.), major errors (e.g., miscalculations or experimental errors), or conclusions that cannot be relied upon. Potential retractions are thoroughly investigated by the editorial office with the support of the editorial board and final approval by the editor. If a retraction is made without the unanimous agreement of the authors, the approval of the BSCM editor is required. If a retraction is published, the original publication is amended with a “RETRACTED” watermark, but will still be available on the journal’s website for future reference. However, retracted articles should not be cited or used for further research, as they cannot be relied upon.
- Article removal: In an extremely limited number of cases, it may be necessary to remove an article from the online database. This will only occur in the following circumstances: i) when the article is clearly defamatory or infringes upon others' legal rights, ii) where the article is, or we have good reason to expect it will be, the subject of a court order, or iii) when the article, if acted upon, might pose a serious health risk. In these circumstances, while the metadata (title and authors) will be retained, the text will be replaced with a screen indicating the article has been removed for legal reasons.
- Article withdrawal: Article withdrawal can be done only in the pre-publication step. Withdrawal is likely to happen either by the author or the publisher. Withdrawal of articles is strongly discouraged and should only be used in exceptional circumstances or under compelling or unavoidable conditions. The publisher has the right to withdraw if an article is found to violate the ethical codes, such as through multiple submissions, bogus claims of authorship, plagiarism, fraudulent use of data, or the like. Authors should send a signed statement to the editorial office requesting withdrawal for compelling reasons. Manuscript withdrawal will only be permitted upon acceptance by the editor.
- Expression of concern: An expression of concern will be issued if the investigation of an issue concerning a published article raised suspicion but did not provide conclusive evidence, and yet the editor feels the article contains invalid results or has strong concerns that readers should be made aware of potentially misleading information contained in the article. Also, an expression of concern may be issued if the investigation requires a considerable amount of time to reach a resolution.
- Return manuscript: The manuscripts submitted that do not pass the initial screening process will be unsubmitted/returned to the author and kept on hold if any of the following concerns arise: Abstract/Reference format problems, Figures and tables are missing or not included, Plagiarism beyond the limit, Manuscript language if not English. The author should revise and resubmit the manuscript as soon as possible.
Appeals and Complaints Policy
- Appeals against an editorial decision: The BSCM journal welcomes appeals to challenge our decision if the author believes that the editor’s decision was unjustified. Authors can appeal a rejection by submitting an appeal to: email@example.com within two months after the manuscript is rejected. The appeal letter that includes the manuscript ID number should clearly explain why you disagree with the decision and provide strong evidence or new data or information in response to the editor and reviewer’s comments. The author will provide a final copy of his/her manuscript, in which changes will be highlighted according to reviewers’ recommendations, and submit a revised manuscript as well. The Editor will only consider accepting valid appeals and will acknowledge receipt of your appeal within five working days. If the editor believes the appeal should go forward, it will be passed to the academic editor who was not involved in the original decision for consideration wherever possible. The editor can confirm the decision to reject the manuscript, invite the revised manuscript, or request additional peer review or statistical review of the original manuscript. When the review is finished, the editor will make a final decision on whether or not to publish. The editor’s decision will be final and cannot be appealed.
- Complaints: The authors have the right to complain if they are not satisfied with publication and journal policies. We believe that complaints should be based on issues related to policy compliance or process failure (serious misjudgment, significant delays in publication, or a rude response), rather than a simple disagreement with editorial decisions. Our goals are to be fair and balanced for those making complaints and for those being complained about. The authors can raise their complaints by submitting a letter to: firstname.lastname@example.org. All complaints will be dealt with in a polite and timely manner, with certainty, and resolved as soon as possible. The decision will be forwarded to all relevant parties.
Duties of Editors
- Publication decisions: The BSCM Editor is responsible for deciding which manuscripts submitted to the journal are suitable for publication. For the manuscripts meeting the journal's aims, scope, and ethical standards, the publication decision is based on their importance, originality, and clarity of the manuscripts. The editor’s decision is guided by the advice of peer reviewers and, if necessary, the editorial board members.
- Fair play: The BSCM editor evaluates manuscripts for their intellectual content without regard to race, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, ethnic origin, citizenship, or the political philosophy of the authors.
- Confidentiality: All manuscripts submitted for peer review are kept strictly confidential. The revelation of submission information is only for the corresponding author, reviewers, BSCM editorial board members, or the publisher as is required or otherwise appropriate. At no time will editors or reviewers utilize submitted materials without author's consent.
- Disclosure and conflict of interest: Editors and editorial board members will not use unpublished information disclosed in a submitted manuscript for their research purposes without the written consent of authors. Privileged information or ideas obtained through peer review must be kept confidential and not used for personal advantage. The editors should recuse themselves from considering manuscripts in which they have conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, companies, or (possibly) institutions connected to the papers. The editors should require all contributors to disclose relevant competing interests and have them corrected if revealed after publication. If needed, other appropriate action should be taken, such as the publication of a retraction or expression of concern.
Duties of Authors
- Reporting standards: Authors of original articles should present an accurate account of the conducted research and an objective discussion of its significance. Underlying data should be represented accurately in the paper. The paper should contain sufficient details and references to allow others to replicate the study. Fraudulent or knowingly inaccurate statements constitute unethical behavior and are unacceptable. Review and professional publication articles should also be accurate and objective, and editorial ‘opinion’ works should be identified as such.
- Originality and plagiarism: The authors should ensure that they have written entirely original work and certify that the manuscript has not previously been published elsewhere. The authors have used the work and words of others that have been appropriately cited or quoted. Plagiarism in all its forms constitutes unethical behavior and is unacceptable. BSCM reserves the right to verify each work through the programs for testing against plagiarism. Papers found with such problems are automatically rejected and authors are so advised.
- Data access retention: Authors may be asked to provide the raw data for editorial review. The data should be prepared to provide public access and should be prepared to retain for a reasonable time after the publication of the paper.
- Multiple, redundant or concurrent publications: In general, papers describing essentially the same research should not be published in more than one journal. Submitting the same paper to more than one journal constitutes unethical publishing behavior and is unacceptable. Manuscripts that have been published as copyrighted material elsewhere cannot be submitted. In addition, manuscripts under review by the journal should not be resubmitted to copyrighted publications.
- Authorship of the paper: Authorship should be limited to those who have made a significant contribution to the conception, design, execution, or interpretation of the reported study. All those who have made significant contributions should be listed as co-authors. Where others have participated in certain substantive aspects of the research project, they should be acknowledged or listed as contributors. The corresponding author should ensure that all appropriate co-authors and no inappropriate co-authors are included in the paper and that all co-authors have seen and approved the final version of the paper and have agreed to its submission for publication.
- Acknowledgment of sources: Proper acknowledgment of the work of others must always be given. Authors should cite publications that have been influential in determining the nature of the reported work. Information obtained privately, as in conversation, correspondence, or discussion with third parties, must not be used or reported without explicit, written permission from the source(s). Information obtained in the course of confidential services, such as refereeing manuscripts or grant applications, must not be used without the explicit written permission of the author(s) of the work involved.
- Reporting of research involving humans or animals: Appropriate approval, licensing, or registration should be obtained before the research begins and details should be provided in the report (e.g. Institutional Review Board, Research Ethics Committee approval, national licensing authorities for the use of animals). If requested by editors, authors should supply evidence that the reported research received the appropriate approval and was carried out ethically (e.g. copies of approvals, licenses, participant consent forms). Researchers should not generally publish or share identifiable individual data collected in the course of research without specific consent from the individual (or their representative).
- Hazards: If the work involves chemicals, procedures, or equipment that has any unusual hazards inherent in their use, the author must identify these in the manuscript.
- Disclosure and conflicts of interest: All authors should disclose in their manuscript any financial or other substantive conflicts of interest that might be construed to influence the results or interpretation of their manuscript. All sources of financial support for the project should be disclosed. Examples of potential conflicts of interest that should be disclosed include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, paid expert testimony, patent applications/registrations, and grants or other funding. Potential conflicts of interest should be disclosed to the editor at the earliest stage possible. Readers should be informed about who has funded the research and the role of the funders in the research.
- Fundamental errors in published works: If the author detects a significant error or inaccuracy in his/her published work, the author should promptly notify the journal editor and cooperate with the editor to retract or correct the paper. If the editor or the publisher learns from a third party that a published work contains a significant error, the author should promptly retract or correct the paper or provide evidence to the editor of the correctness of the original paper.
Duties of Reviewers
- Contribution to editorial decisions: peer review assists the editor in making editorial decisions and through the editorial communications with the author may also assist the author in improving the paper.
- Promptness: Any selected reviewer who feels unqualified to assess the research reported in the manuscript or knows that its timely review will be impossible should notify the editor immediately and excuse himself/herself from the review process. The paper will be immediately sent to another qualified reviewer.
- Confidentiality: All manuscripts received for review must be treated as confidential documents. Information concerning the manuscripts should not be discussed with third parties without the explicit approval of the editor.
- Standards of objectivity: Reviews should be conducted objectively without any bias to the country in which the research has been conducted, the subjects’ race, age, gender, sexual orientation, etc. Personal criticism of the author is inappropriate. Referees should express their views clearly with appropriate supporting arguments.
- Acknowledgment of sources: Reviewers should identify relevant published work that has not been cited by the authors. Any statement that an observation, derivation, or argument had been previously reported should be accompanied by the relevant citation. Reviewers should also call to the editor’s attention any substantial similarity or overlap between the manuscript under consideration and any other published paper of which they have personal knowledge.
- Disclosure and conflict of interest: Unpublished materials disclosed in a submitted manuscript must not be used in a reviewer’s research without the express written consent of the author. Privileged information or ideas obtained through peer review must be kept confidential and not used for personal advantage. Reviewers should not consider manuscripts in which they have conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, companies, or institutions associated with the papers.