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About The HUGO Journal
This page includes information about the aims and scope of The HUGO Journal, editorial policies, open access and article-processing charges, the peer review process and other information. For details of how to prepare and submit a manuscript through the online submission system, please see the instructions for authors.
Aims & scope
The HUGO Journal is the Official Journal of the Human Genome Organisation and publishes original research and articles on all aspects of genomic medicine and genome sciences. The aim of the journal is to provide an excellent resource for the publication of peer-reviewed research articles on a wide range of genome-based fields. The wide scope of the journal reflects the broad and rapidly expanding nature of the field of genomics.
The HUGO Journal welcomes article submissions in any of the following categories:
- Genomic sciences and human disease: e.g., pharmacogenomics, cancer genomics, genetics of Mendelian disorders, genetics of complex diseases
- Genome structure and genetic variation
- Genome-to-systems strategies in systems biology
- Genomic technologies
- Genomic epidemiology
- Computational genomics
- Comparative genomics between humans and other organisms
- Microbial genomics of organisms pertinent to human disease
- Population genetics
- Ethical, legal, and societal research relevant to genomics and human genetics
Several new sections will be offered to enhance the exchange of information relevant to genomic scientists:
- Databases: This section specifically encourages the publication of description and utility of specific genomic databases
- Technology advances: This section publishes articles specifically focused on advances in technologies pertinent to genomic sciences. These include tissue and nucleic acid preparation, and useful computational algorithms
- Innovation reports: These are short reports of <1000 words that describe a specific finding of interest to the genomics community. The focus is on early publication of a highly innovative finding that may not have large scale validation. This includes case reports of unique genotype-phenotype associations
The HUGO Journal is the official publication of the Human Genome Organisation. We will be publishing key consensus reports and policy guidelines from HUGO Council and its subcommittees. Because The HUGO Journal acts as the forum for the Human Genome Organisation, we will publish views and opinions of the HUGO members on the issues that are important for the genome research and research in general.
All articles published by The HUGO Journal are made freely and permanently accessible online immediately upon publication, without subscription charges or registration barriers. Further information about open access can be found here.
Authors of articles published in The HUGO Journal are the copyright holders of their articles and have granted to any third party, in advance and in perpetuity, the right to use, reproduce or disseminate the article, according to the SpringerOpen copyright and license agreement.
For authors who are US government employees or are prevented from being copyright holders for similar reasons, BioMed Central can accommodate non-standard copyright lines. Please contact us if further information is needed.
Open access publishing is not without costs. The HUGO Journal therefore levies an article-processing charge of £1100/$1870/€1390 for each article accepted for publication. If the submitting author's institution is a Member, the cost of the article-processing charge is covered by the membership, and no further charge is payable. In the case of authors whose institutions are Supporter Members, however, a discounted article-processing charge is payable by the author. We routinely waive charges for authors from low-income countries. For other countries, article-processing charge waivers or discounts are granted on a case-by-case basis to authors with insufficient funds. Authors can request a waiver or discount during the submission process. For further details, see our article-processing charge page.
SpringerOpen is working closely with Thomson Reuters (ISI) to ensure that citation analysis of articles published in The HUGO Journal will be available.
Publication and peer review process
Authors will be able to check the progress of their manuscript through the submission system at any time by logging into My The HUGO Journal, a personalized section of the site.
Portability of peer review
In order to support efficient and thorough peer review, we aim to reduce the number of times a manuscript is re-reviewed after rejection from The HUGO Journal, thereby speeding up the publication process and reducing the burden on peer reviewers. Therefore, please note that, if a manuscript is not accepted for publication in The HUGO Journal and the authors choose to submit a revised version to another SpringerOpen journal, we will pass the reviews on to the other journal's editors at the authors' request. We will reveal the reviewers' names to the handling editor for editorial purposes unless reviewers let us know when they return their report that they do not wish us to share their report with another SpringerOpen journal.
Please see our reprints website for information about reprinting articles.
The HUGO Journal will consider supplements based on proceedings (full articles or meeting abstracts), reviews or research. All articles submitted for publication in supplements are subject to peer review. Published supplements are fully searchable and freely accessible online and can also be produced in print. For further information, please contact us.
Any manuscript, or substantial parts of it, submitted to the journal must not be under consideration by any other journal. In general, the manuscript should not have already been published in any journal or other citable form, although it may have been deposited on a preprint server. Authors are required to ensure that no material submitted as part of a manuscript infringes existing copyrights, or the rights of a third party.
Correspondence concerning articles published in The HUGO Journal is encouraged. A 'post a comment' feature is available on all articles published by The HUGO Journal. Comments will be moderated by the editorial office (see our Comment policy for further information) and linked to the full-text version of the article, if suitable.
SpringerOpen is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and endorses the World Association of Medical Editors (WAME) Policy Statement on Geopolitical Intrusion on Editorial Decisions. In order to safeguard the quality of SpringerOpen journal publications, Springer has developed a policy on Publishing Integrity which is in line with the philosophy of COPE.
We follow the principle that we have a prime duty to maintain the integrity of the scientific record. Springer’s Policy on Publishing Integrity addresses:
- Clear definitions of what violation of Publishing Integrity is.
- A manual on how to identify such a violation (in the document referred to as an Act of Misconduct).
- Clear (COPE) examples of what such an Act of Misconduct looks like in practice.
- Clearly defined actions which have to be undertaken by the Editor and Springer when such an Act is a clearly proven fact.
- Q & A – a useful list of Questions and Answers on the definition of Publishing Integrity.
Please find the full document of Springer's Policy on Publishing Integrity here.
Submission of a manuscript to The HUGO Journal implies that all authors have read and agreed to its content, and that any experimental research that is reported in the manuscript has been performed with the approval of an appropriate ethics committee. Research carried out on humans must be in compliance with the Helsinki Declaration, and any experimental research on animals must follow internationally recognized guidelines. A statement to this effect must appear in the Methods section of the manuscript, including the name of the body which gave approval, with a reference number where appropriate. Informed consent must also be documented. Manuscripts may be rejected if the editorial office considers that the research has not been carried out within an ethical framework, e.g. if the severity of the experimental procedure is not justified by the value of the knowledge gained.
For all articles that include information or clinical photographs relating to individual patients, written and signed consent from each patient to publish must also be made available if requested by the editorial staff.
The HUGO Journal's publisher, Springer, has a legal responsibility to ensure that its journals do not publish material that infringes copyright, or that includes libellous or defamatory content. If, on review, your manuscript is perceived to contain potentially libellous content the journal Editors, with assistance from the publisher if required, will work with authors to ensure an appropriate outcome is reached.
The involvement of scientific (medical) writers or anyone else who assisted with the preparation of the manuscript content should be acknowledged, along with their source of funding, as described in the European Medical Writers Association (EMWA) guidelines on the role of medical writers in developing peer-reviewed publications. If medical writers are not listed among the authors, their role should be acknowledged explicitly.
Standards of reporting
The HUGO Journal supports initiatives aimed at improving the reporting of biomedical research. We recommend authors refer to the EQUATOR network website for further information on the available reporting guidelines for health research, and the MIBBI Portal for prescriptive checklists for reporting biological and biomedical research where applicable. Authors are requested to make use of these when drafting their manuscript and peer reviewers will also be asked to refer to these checklists when evaluating these studies. Checklists are available for a number of study designs, including randomized controlled trials (CONSORT), systematic reviews (PRISMA), observational studies (STROBE), meta-analyses of observational studies (MOOSE), diagnostic accuracy studies (STARD) and qualitative studies (RATS). For authors of systematic reviews, an additional file, linked from the Methods section, should reproduce all details concerning the search strategy. For an example of how a search strategy should be presented, see the Cochrane Reviewers' Handbook.
Standardised gene nomenclature should be used throughout. Human gene symbols and names can be found in the HUGO Gene Nomenclature Committee (HGNC) database and any enquiries, or requests for new gene symbols, should be directed via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Nomenclature committees for other species are listed at http://www.genenames.org/about/faq#otherspecies. For mutation nomenclature please use the guidelines suggested by the Human Genome Variation Society.
Data and materials release
Submission of a manuscript to The HUGO Journal implies that readily reproducible materials described in the manuscript, including all relevant raw data, will be freely available to any scientist wishing to use them for non-commercial purposes. Nucleic acid sequences, protein sequences, and atomic coordinates should be deposited in an appropriate database in time for the accession number to be included in the published article. In computational studies where the sequence information is unacceptable for inclusion in databases because of lack of experimental validation, the sequences must be published as an additional file with the article.
Any 'in press' articles cited within the references and necessary for the reviewers' assessment of the manuscript should be made available if requested by the editorial office.
Nucleotide sequences can be deposited with the DNA Data Bank of Japan (DDBJ), European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL/EBI) Nucleotide Sequence Database, or GenBank (National Center for Biotechnology Information).
The accession numbers of any nucleic acid sequences, protein sequences or atomic coordinates cited in the manuscript should be provided, in square brackets with the corresponding database name; for example, [EMBL:AB026295, EMBL:AC137000, DDBJ:AE000812, GenBank:U49845, PDB:1BFM, Swiss-Prot:Q96KQ7, PIR:S66116].
The databases for which we can provide direct links are: EMBL Nucleotide Sequence Database (EMBL), DNA Data Bank of Japan (DDBJ), GenBank at the NCBI (GenBank), Protein Data Bank (PDB), Protein Information Resource (PIR) and the Swiss-Prot Protein Database (Swiss-Prot).
Mass spectrometry data should be supplied in the mzML format recommended by the HUPO Protein Standards Initiative Mass Spectrometry Standards Working Group guidelines (http://www.psidev.info/index.php?q=node/80). We also recommend that the data is deposited in the ProteomeExchange (http://proteomexchange.org/) through the PRIDE website (http://www.ebi.ac.uk/pride/), and protein interaction data can be submitted to members of the IMEx consortium (http://www.imexconsortium.org/submit-your-data).
Protein structures can be deposited with one of the members of the Worldwide Protein Data Bank. Nucleic Acids structures can be deposited with the Nucleic Acid Database at Rutgers. Crystal structures of organic compounds can be deposited with the Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre.
Chemical structures and assays
Functional genomics data (such as microarray, RNA-seq or ChIP-seq data)
Where appropriate, authors should adhere to the standards proposed by the Functional Genomics Data Society and must deposit microarray data in MIAME-compliant format in one of the public repositories, such as ArrayExpress or Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO). Deposition of high-throughput functional genomics sequencing data (such as RNA-Seq or ChIP-Seq data) with ArrayExpress or GEO in compliance with MINSEQE is also required.
We encourage authors to prepare models of biochemical reaction networks using the Systems Biology Markup Language and to deposit the model with the BioModels database, as well as submitting it as an additional file with the manuscript.
Appeals and complaints
Authors who wish to appeal a rejection or make a complaint should, in the first instance, contact the Editor-in-Chief who will provide details of the journal's complaints procedure.
The HUGO Journal requires authors to declare any competing financial or other interest in relation to their work. All competing interests that are declared will be listed at the end of published articles. Where an author gives no competing interests, the listing will read 'The author(s) declare that they have no competing interests'.
The HUGO Journal's publisher, SpringerOpen, is a member of the CrossCheck plagiarism detection initiative. In cases of suspected plagiarism CrossCheck is available to the editors of The HUGO Journal to detect instances of overlapping and similar text in submitted manuscripts by using the plagiarism detection tool iThenticate. CrossCheck is a multi-publisher initiative allowing screening of published and submitted content for originality.
Citing articles in The HUGO Journal
Articles in The HUGO Journal should be cited in the same way as articles in a traditional journal. Because articles are not printed, they do not have page numbers; instead, they are given a unique article number.
Article citations follow this format:
Authors: Title. Hugo J [year], [volume number]:[article number].
e.g. Roberts LD, Hassall DG, Winegar DA, Haselden JN, Nicholls AW, Griffin JL: Increased hepatic oxidative metabolism distinguishes the action of Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor delta from Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor gamma in the Ob/Ob mouse. Hugo J 2009, 1:115.
refers to article 115 from Volume 1 of the journal.
Why publish your article in The HUGO Journal?
The HUGO Journal's open access policy allows maximum visibility of articles published in the journal as they are available to a wide, global audience. Articles that have been especially highly accessed are highlighted with a 'Highly accessed' graphic, which appears on the journal's contents pages and search results.
Speed of publication
The HUGO Journal offers a fast publication schedule whilst maintaining rigorous peer review; all articles must be submitted online, and peer review is managed fully electronically (articles are distributed in PDF form, which is automatically generated from the submitted files). Articles will be published with their final citation after acceptance, in both fully browsable web form, and as a formatted PDF; the article will then be available through The HUGO Journal and SpringerOpen.
Online publication in The HUGO Journal gives authors the opportunity to publish large datasets, large numbers of color illustrations and moving pictures, to display data in a form that can be read directly by other software packages so as to allow readers to manipulate the data for themselves, and to create all relevant links (for example to relevant databases and papers).
Promotion and press coverage
Articles published in The HUGO Journal are included in article alerts and regular email updates. Some may be included in abstract books mailed to academics and are highlighted on The HUGO Journal's pages and on the SpringerOpen homepage.
In addition, articles published in The HUGO Journal may be promoted by press releases to the general or scientific press. These activities increase the exposure and number of accesses for articles published in The HUGO Journal.
Authors of articles published in The HUGO Journal retain the copyright of their articles and are free to reproduce and disseminate their work (for further details, see the copyright and license agreement.
For further information about the advantages of publishing in a journal from SpringerOpen, please click here.