Quantitative Biology

Editorial Policy

Editorial policies

Quantitative Biology (QB) is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), and we follow the recommendations of international organizations on the editorial policy of scientific publications:

Code of Conduct and Best Practice Guidelines for Journal Editors
Code of Conduct for Journal Publishers
Principles of Transparency and Best Practice in Scholarly Publishing
COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers
International standards for editors and authors, developed by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE)
● World Association of Medical Editors (WAME)

Submission of a manuscript to QB implies that all authors have read and agreed to its content and that the manuscript conforms to the journal’s policies.


Ethical responsibilities of authors
Peer-review policy
Peer-review process
Publication fee
Conflicts of interest
Informed consent
Plagiarism detection

Ethical responsibilities of authors
Submission of a manuscript to QB implies that all authors have read and agreed to its content and that the manuscript conforms to the journal’s policies.

Please be advised:
   ●  The manuscript has not been published previously (partly or in full), unless the new work concerns an expansion of previous work (please provide transparency on the re-use of material to avoid the hint of text-recycling (‘self-plagiarism’)).
   ●  A single study is not split up into several parts to increase the quantity of submissions and submitted to various journals or to one journal over time (e.g.  ‘salami-publishing’).
   ●  No data have been fabricated or manipulated (including images) to support your conclusions.
   ●  No data, text, or theories by others are presented as if they were the author’s own (‘plagiarism’). Proper acknowledgements to other works must be given (this includes material that is closely copied (near verbatim), summarized and/or paraphrased), quotation marks are used for verbatim copying of material, and permissions are secured for material that is copyrighted.
   ●  Important note: the journal may use software to screen for plagiarism.
   ●  Consent to submit has been received explicitly from all co-authors, as well as from the responsible authorities - tacitly or explicitly - at the institute/organization where the work has been carried out, before the work is submitted.
   ●  Authors whose names appear on the submission have contributed sufficiently to the scientific work and therefore share collective responsibility and accountability for the results.
   ●  Authors are strongly advised to ensure the correct author group, corresponding author, and order of authors at submission. Changes of authorship or in the order of authors are not accepted after acceptance of a manuscript.
   ●  Adding and/or deleting authors at revision stage may be justifiably warranted. A letter must accompany the revised manuscript to explain the role of the added and/or deleted author(s). Further documentation may be required to support your request.
   ●  Requests for addition or removal of authors as a result of authorship disputes after acceptance are honored after formal notification by the institute or independent body and/or when there is agreement between all authors.
   ●  Upon request authors should be prepared to send relevant documentation or data in order to verify the validity of the results. This could be in the form of raw data, samples, records, etc. Sensitive information in the form of confidential or proprietary data is excluded.
If there is a suspicion of misconduct, the journal will carry out an investigation following the COPE guidelines.  If, after investigation, the allegation seems to raise valid concerns, the accused author will be contacted and given an opportunity to address the issue. If misconduct has been established beyond reasonable doubt, this may result in the Editor-in-Chief’s implementation of the following measures, including, but not limited to:
   ●  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 placed with the article or in severe cases retraction of the article will occur. The reason must be given in the published erratum or retraction note. Please note that retraction means that the paper is maintained on the platform, watermarked “retracted” and explanation for the retraction is provided in a note linked to the watermarked article.
   ●  The author’s institution may be informed.

Peer-review policy

All manuscripts submitted to QB will undergo extensive peer review organized by Editorial Board Members (EBM). QB adopts a single-blind review mode: the reviewers know the names of the authors, but the authors do not know who reviewed their manuscript unless the reviewer chooses to sign their report. QB considers articles that are scientifically valid and a useful contribution to the field. Manuscripts are initially assessed by our experienced team of in-house editors, and those that are deemed of interest are sent for peer review. Reviewers are expected to respond promptly to requests to review and to submit reviews within the time agreed. Reviewers’ comments should be constructive, honest, and polite.


Peer-review process

All manuscripts submitted to Quantitative Biology will undergo extensive peer review organized by our Editorial Board Members (EBM).
1. All Manuscripts are submitted to the editorial office through the online submission system https://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/qb.
2. Scientific editor send the manuscripts to an Associate Editor of EBM after reviewing the manuscripts.
3. Associate Editor selects one from the following two lanes, or reject manuscript that do not meet QB standards, after reviewing the manuscripts.
1) Normal track: Assign it to a Corresponding Editor of EBM, who will then invite 2-5 reviewers and send recommendation back to Associate editor.
2) Fast lane track: Invite 2-5 board members or external reviewers to review the papers.
4. Associate Editor makes the decision based on Corresponding Editor’s recommendation (if normal track) or directly based on reviewers’ comment (if Fast lane), and informs the authors.
5. Authors revise the manuscript according to the Editor’s suggestions and re-submit the revised version for further evaluation, which will be processed again until it is accepted or rejected (repeat the above 2 and 3 steps).
6. Associate Editor will then recommend to accept or reject the manuscript based on the Corresponding Editor’s recommendation (if normal track) or reviewers’ comments (if Fast lane). The Editor-in-chief will make final decision.

Publication fee

No publication fee is charged for papers published in QB. QB also charges no fees for article submission and processing.
Papers published in QB are all free access over the world, furthermore the authors of the paper do not need to pay for it.

Conflicts of interest

Authors must disclose all relationships or interests that could have direct or potential influence or impart bias on the work. Although an author may not feel there is any conflict, disclosure of relationships and interests provides a more complete and transparent process, leading to an accurate and objective assessment of the work. Awareness of a real or perceived conflicts of interest is a perspective to which the readers are entitled. This is not meant to imply that a financial relationship with an organization that sponsored the research or compensation received for consultancy work is inappropriate.
Examples of potential conflicts of interests that are directly or indirectly related to the research may include but are not limited to the following:
   ●  Research grants from funding agencies (please give the research funder and the grant number)
   ●  Honoraria for speaking at symposia
   ●  Financial support for attending symposia
   ●  Financial support for educational programs
   ●  Employment or consultation
   ●  Support from a project sponsor
   ●  Position on advisory board or board of directors or other type of management relationships
   ●  Multiple affiliations
   ●  Financial relationships, for example equity ownership or investment interest
   ●  Intellectual property rights (e.g. patents, copyrights and royalties from such rights)
   ●  Holdings of spouse and/or children that may have financial interest in the work
In addition, interests that go beyond financial interests and compensation (non-financial interests) that may be important to readers should be disclosed. These may include but are not limited to personal relationships or competing interests directly or indirectly tied to this research, or professional interests or personal beliefs that may influence your research. The corresponding author collects the conflict of interest disclosure forms from all authors. In author collaborations where formal agreements for representation allow it, it is sufficient for the corresponding author to sign the disclosure form on behalf of all authors.
This information should be mostly included in Compliance with Ethics Guidelines section of the published paper and the Conflict of Interest statements should list each author separately by name:
See below examples of disclosures:
Acknowledgements: This study was funded by X (grant number X).
Conflict of Interest:  Author A has received research grants from Company A. Author B has received a speaker honorarium from Company X and owns stock in Company Y. Author C is a member of committee Z.
If no conflict exists, the authors should state:
Conflict of Interest: Author A, Author B, and Author C declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Informed consent

All individuals have individual rights that are not to be infringed. Individual participants in studies have, for example, the right to decide what happens to the (identifiable) personal data gathered, to what they have said during a study or an interview, as well as to any photograph that was taken.
Hence it is important that all participants gave their informed consent in writing prior to inclusion in the study. Identifying details (names, dates of birth, identity numbers and other information) of the participants that were studied should not be published in written descriptions, photographs, and genetic profiles unless the information is essential for scientific purposes and the participant (or parent or guardian if the participant is incapable) gave written informed consent for publication. Complete anonymity is difficult to achieve in some cases, and informed consent should be obtained if there is any doubt.
The following statement should be included:
Informed consent: “Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.”
If identifying information about participants is available in the article, the following statement should be included:
“Additional informed consent was obtained from all individual participants for whom identifying information is included in this article.”

Plagiarism detection

QB is a member of the CrossCheck plagiarism detection initiative.
QB uses CrossCheck's iThenticate software to screen submitted manuscripts for similarity to published material. CrossCheck is a multi-publisher initiative allowing screening of published and submitted content for originality. We also embedded the plagiarism detection tool iThenticate into our ScholarOne submission system, thereby manuscript will be automatically checked by iThenticate when it is submitted successfully.