BioMed Central’s 5th Annual Research Awards, and the winners are…

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The winners of our 5th Annual Research Awards were announced last night at ZSL London Zoo, Regent’s Park, London, UK. Celebrating the very best research that has been made available by open access publishing, more than 120 guests attended the prestigious ceremony including leading researchers, shortlisted authors and science journalists from around the world. The winners were selected from 214 BioMed Central journals which published more than 17,000 peer-reviewed open access articles over the last 12 months. 

Congratulations to all our winners.

 

Biology Award, in association with Roche 

Roberto Danovaro, Polytechnic University of Marche, Italy

The first metazoa living in permanently anoxic conditionsBMC Biology 2010, 8:30 (6 April 2010)

Medicine Award

Christina Jones, University of Liverpool, UK

Intensive care diaries reduce …

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Battle of the sex chromosomes

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It’s something of a platitude that men and women want different things, but it seems that just such a battle is fought out on the sex chromosomes. Genes that are mainly expressed in only one of the sexes – for example, those that have important roles in the ovary or testis – are distributed unequally: even though the X chromosome is found in both sexes, it contains more female-biased than male-biased genes. A common explanation for this difference is that the mammalian X chromosome is inactivated early in spermatogenesis, making it a poor location for genes necessary for sperm production.

However, according to a new study in BMC Biology, this won’t work for Drosophila. Fruit fly X chromosomes don’t seem …

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A new Flavour of journal is cooking up a storm

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Enter Flavour’s exclusive competition for
your chance to win a free copy of
Peter Barham’s Science of Cooking

The recent explosion of
Molecular Gastronomy has brought the worlds of the laboratory and the kitchen
closer together with science playing an increasingly pivotal role in food and
cooking. BioMed Central’s new journal, Flavour,
will allow all stakeholders to read the latest and highest quality scientific
research in this field. Focussing on flavour generation and perception, and its
influence on behaviour and nutrition, Flavour is now accepting
submissions and will publish research relating to all contexts – whether it be
everyday cooking, haute cuisine or government policy on healthy eating.

Peter Barham (University of Bristol and author …

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Open access vital for safeguarding UK scholarly research

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A new commissioned report has recommended that
academic policymakers promote the adoption of gold-route open access publishing
to help increase access to scholarly journals.

Commissioned by Research Information Network (RIN), Research Libraries UK, the Wellcome Trust,
the Publishing Research Consortium and the Joint Information Systems Committee,
the report ‘Heading for the open road: costs and benefits of
transitions in scholarly communications’
is the result of a
wide-ranging consultation on the future of the scholarly publishing landscape
with UK-based stakeholders including research funders, librarians and
publishers.

The report, part of RIN’s Transitions in Scholarly Communication portfolio,
examines five different routes for achieving greater access to research
articles, and scrutinizes the relative costs and benefits of each method. Its
authors …

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Break out the bubbly – Medical Gas Research launches

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BioMed Central launches Medical Gas Research this week, a new open-access journal led by Editor-in-Chief John Zhang.

Medical gases are used in a variety of multidisciplinary fields of clinical practice such as diving medicine, anesthesiology, emergency medicine, hyperbaric oxygen medicine as well as basic science research fields including biochemistry and neuroscience. As Professor Zhang explains in his launch editorial, Medical Gas Research provides a platform encompassing all aspects of this research, from basic science to the clinical applications of medical gas research, with particular focus on the neurobiological effects of related disorders.

Among the other articles published at launch include original research by Dong et al. on the role of the anesthetic component isoflurane and …

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Popular books about sex differences

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The topic of the differences in male and female’s brains and behaviour has triggered a succession of popular books over the last decade which has helped advance study into the area of human brain differences in relation to sex and gender. In a book review, published today in Biology of Sex Differences, authors Margaret  McCarthy and Gregory  Ball provide a critique of two recent publications, Rebecca J. Jordan-Young’s “Brainstorm: The Flaws in the Science of Sex Differences” and Cordelia Fine’s “Delusions of Gender"                                                                 
The critics agree with aspects of both Jordan-Young’s and  Fine’s approaches to questioning the translation of research in this field, but point out that there are areas of research that have …

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Selected papers from WABI 2010 – new series in Algorithms for Molecular Biology

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Algorithms for Molecular Biology has published a series of articles presented at the 10th Workshop on Algorithms in Bioinformatics (WABI), held at ALGO 2010. The articles cover a diverse range of topics, from supertree methods, to novel computational methods for inferring haplotypes from genotype data.

Algorithms in biology is an ever expanding field, which is helping to provide more cost effective methods of biological analysis than traditional wetlab investigations. WABI 2010’s focus was on discrete algorithms and machine learning methods that addressed existing problems in molecular biology.

Within the series, Prof Bonnie Berger and colleagues describe a novel approach to clarifying variability in the conformation of structures solved using X-ray crystallography by using an algorithm that is able to distinguish …

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Trials publishes the International Stroke Trial data set

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The journal Trials has, since its launch, aimed to be a force for change in publishing – experimenting with and refining novel approaches to reporting information about randomised controlled trials. The sharing and publishing of clinical research data underlying trials has been an area of the journal’s focus, and the editors have sought to establish guidelines for this emerging area of journal publishing. An article just-published in the journal puts clinical data sharing – from one of the largest clinical trials in acute stroke ever conducted – firmly into practice.

The results of the first International Stroke Trial (IST) suggested that aspirin should be administered to stroke patients as soon as possible after the onset of …

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Open Network Biology and the second Sage Bionetworks Commons Congress

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The Sage Bionetworks, a nonprofit organization hoping to revolutionize how researchers approach the treatment of human disease, is holding its second annual meeting
this week in San Francisco. BioMed Central is supporting and will be on
location at the event, where Dr Eric Schadt, Pacific Biosciences, USA,
will give an overview of a new BioMed Central journal, Open Network Biology.

Sage Bionetworks aims to better understand changes at the molecular level when patients present with different diseases and symptoms, which in turn will produce better targets for new drug discoveries and facilitate more personalized  healthcare. Building these network models of disease, or maps, involves combining data from currently fragmented omics fields, which do not …

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Threaded publications: we need you and your data for the next phase

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BioMed Central recently convened some inaugural ‘threaded publications’ discussions in Oxford, UK. This post is an expanded summary of the discussions and next steps for the concept. Many thanks to Prof Doug Altman, Mr Geoffrey Bilder, Sir Iain Chalmers and Prof Mike Clarke for their contributions.

What is threaded publications trying to achieve?
What a reader or ‘user’ might gain from threaded publications depends on their role. As a systematic reviewer of the medical evidence, you need to easily and readily find all articles and data related to the topic you are studying. Research funders and ethics committees need to know if a new piece of research, such as a clinical trial, is warranted (indeed, all clinical trials should ideally …

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