At the time of submission, the CellR4 policy requires that authors reveal any COI, including financial interests or connections, direct or indirect, or any other situations that could raise questions of bias in either the reported work or the conclusions, implications, or opinions stated. Disclosed potential COIs should include any relevant commercial or other source of funding for either author(s), or the sponsoring institution, the associated department(s) or organization(s). When considering whether you should declare a COI please consider the following question: Is there any arrangement that would embarrass you or any of your co-authors did not declare and that would emerge after publication and you had not declared it?
As an integral part of the online submission process, Corresponding authors are required to confirm whether they or their co-authors have any conflicts of interest to declare, and to provide details of these. If the Corresponding author is unable to confirm this information on behalf of all co-authors, the authors in question will then be required to submit a completed COI form to the Editorial Office. It is the Corresponding author’s responsibility to ensure that all authors adhere to this policy.
If the manuscript is published, COI information will be communicated in a statement within the published work.
COI in Industry Sponsored Research
Authors whose manuscripts are submitted for publication must declare all relevant sources of funding in support of the preparation of a manuscript. CellR4 requires full disclosure of financial support as to whether it is from the tobacco industry, the pharmaceutical or any other industry, government agencies, or any other source. This information should be included in the Acknowledgements section of the manuscript.
Authors are required to specify sources of funding for the study and to indicate whether or not the text was reviewed by the sponsor prior to submission, i.e., whether the study was written with full investigator access to all relevant data and whether the sponsor exerted editorial influence over the written text. This information should be included in the cover letter. In addition to disclosure of direct financial support to the authors or their laboratory and prior sponsor-review of the paper, submitting authors are asked to disclose all relevant consultancies within the 12 months prior to submission, since the views expressed in the contribution could be influenced by the opinions they have expressed privately as consultants. This information should be included in the Acknowledgments section of the manuscript.
In the event that a previously undisclosed potential competing interest for an author of a published paper comes to the attention of the editors and is subsequently confirmed with the authors, the undeclared interest will be published as an erratum in a future issue.
COI Policy: Reviewers and Editors
Reviewers must disclose to editors any conflicts of interest that could bias their opinions of the manuscript, and they should disqualify themselves from reviewing specific manuscripts if they believe it to be appropriate. As in the case of authors, silence on the part of reviewers concerning potential conflicts may mean either that such conflicts exist that they have failed to disclose, or that conflicts do not exist. Reviewers must therefore also be asked to state explicitly whether conflicts do or do not exist. Reviewers must not use knowledge of the work, before its publication, to further their own interests. COI for a given manuscript exists when a participant in the peer review and publication process – author, reviewer, and editor – has ties to activities that could inappropriately influence his or her judgment, regardless of whether judgment is, in fact, affected. Financial relationships with industry (for example, employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, expert testimony), either directly or through immediate family, are usually considered the most important conflicts of interest. However, conflicts can occur for other reasons, such as personal relationships, academic competition, and intellectual passion. External peer reviewers should disclose to editors any conflicts of interest that could bias their opinions of the manuscript and they should disqualify themselves from reviewing specific manuscripts if they believe it appropriate. The editors must be made aware of reviewers’ COI to interpret the reviews and judge for themselves whether the reviewer should be disqualified.” (From the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors Annals of Internal Medicine 118, (8) 646-647).
judge for themselves whether the reviewer should be disqualified.” (From the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors Annals of Internal Medicine 118, (8) 646-647).
Submission by an editor. A paper submitted by an editor will be handled by one of the other editors who does not have a conflict with the review and who is not at the same institution as the submitting editor. The other editor will select referees and make all decisions on the paper.
Submission by author at same institution as one of the editors. A paper submitted by an author for which there is a potential conflict with who is at the same institution as one of the editors will be handled by one of the other editors. The other editor will select referees and make all decisions on the paper. Submission by family member of editor or by author whose relationship with editor might create the perception of bias. A paper submitted by a family member of one of the editors, or by an author whose relationship with one of the editors might create the perception of bias (e.g. in terms of close friendship or conflict/rivalry), will be handled by another editor. The other editor will select referees and make all decisions on the paper. If in doubt, the editors will consult with the Journal editor.
Potential COI for reviewers. The invitation letter to reviewers will include the following paragraph: ‘If you know or think you know the identity of the author, and if you feel there is any potential COI in your refereeing this paper because of your relationship with the author (e.g. in terms of close friendship or conflict/rivalry) or for any other reason, please declare it. By accepting this invitation, it is assumed there is no potential COI. Standard policy will be not to use a referee if a COI has been declared, but the editors may use their discretion after consulting with one another.