Peer Review Policy
All manuscripts are initially assessed by a handling editor who is a member of the journal’s Editorial Board. His duties include evaluating the suitability of the manuscripts to the scope of the journal;giving quick remarks on unsuitable articles before further processing to peer review; and selecting experts of the field for peer review of articles.
Editorials and Letters may be accepted at this stage but, for all other types of submission the decision is either to decline the submission or to send it for peer review. Papers which do not fulfil the basic requirements of the journal, or are out of the scope of the journal may be rejected at this point to avoid delays to authors willing to submit their articles elsewhere. A decision from this initial phase review may take 1 week after submission. Manuscripts going forward to the review process are reviewed by professional experts of the field. All papers are subject to undergo a double-blind peer review process by two or more reviewers. Every reasonable step is taken to conceal the authors’ identity during the review process except those which are beyond our capacity and self-revealing (e.g. authors’ statements about the details of their own prior publications etc.). In such cases, the review may be prone to be single-blinded (i.e. authors do not know reviewers' identities).
The journal’s targeted period of the review process is within 4 weeks of the initial editorial decision however, occasionally delays may happen and authors are requested to wait for at least 6 weeks from submissions before contacting the journal. The Editor-in-Chief reserves the right to the final decision regarding acceptance after receiving reviewers’ comments and whether to send the article back to the author for revisions or not. After receiving the revised copy of the manuscript from the authors, it is sent to the reviewers for their approval or additional comments. If further revision is required by the reviewer the article is sent to the authors for a second round of revision according to the reviewers suggestions. Only 3 rounds of revision are allowed for any manuscript before its final publication.
Editors of Neoplasia Research journals may submit their own articles in its journals however, such submission are dealt and evaluated by external field experts and reviewers at all stages of publication. To comply with our policy of transparency in the publication process no details/comments about these submissions are shared with any board member of the journal. The Editor-in-Chief of the journal is responsible for final acceptance/ rejection of these articles on the basis of external reviewers’ reports but, a third party expert opinion is also sought in this regard, as appropriate.
In case of special issue focusing on a particular topic, the appointed Guest Editor may also be held responsible to conduct peer review of some related submissions accepted after the initial round of review process.However, special attention is given to avoid any conflict of interest in these circumstances.
The use of electronic submission and peer-review system of Neoplasia Research facilitates editors and reviewers during peer review process.
We consider peer review the foundation for safeguarding the quality and integrity of scientific and scholarly research. Therefore, peer review is compulsory for all submissions to the journals and assists the editorial board members in making editorial decisions, subsequent editorial communications with authors may also assist the authors in improving their articles. In this regard, if a selected referee feels him/herself sufficiently unqualified to review the assigned manuscript; or is unable to provide a timely review; or the article is outside his/her area of expertise; he/she should notify the editor at the earliest excusing him/herself from the review process so that an alternative reviewer may be appointed by the editors (however, the reviewer may nominate an appropriately qualified colleague for review at this stage). All reviews should be conducted objectively with no personal criticism to the author. Reviewers should express their critique clearly with supporting arguments.
Reviewers should identify relevant published work that has not been cited by the authors. Any statement that had been previously reported elsewhere should be accompanied by the relevant citation. A reviewer should also call the Editor-in-Chief's attention to any substantial similarity or overlap between the manuscript under consideration and any other published paper they have personal knowledge of. Privileged information or ideas obtained through peer review must be kept confidential by the reviewers and not used for personal advantage; this also includes the reviewers who have declined to review the manuscript. Reviewers are bounded not to discuss about any article sent to them for review with anyone and editorial approval must be sought in advance for any third person’s advice, if the reviewer considers this necessary for evaluating the article.
Reviewers should not review manuscripts in which they have any conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, firms or institutions connected to the papers. Any such conflict should be disclosed to the Editor-in-Chief by the reviewer. The Editors will then determine sufficiency of the conflict to exclude the reviewer from peer review.
Guidance for Peer Reviewers
Reviewers being the basic support in maintaining the high quality of publications should be especially vigilant about the quality and originality of articles . The reviewer may inform the editor if he finds the article submitted to him/her for review is under consideration in any other journal of his/her knowledge.
Though no fixed rules for analyzing the articles are outlined and review may be carried out on case-to-case basis, scrutinizing the article for the worthiness, quality, and originality of the work must be the mandatory part of each review. If reviewer believes that the article may be accepted after revisions, he/she should provide clear suggestions on how to improve the paper. Likewise, if an article is found to be not good enough and has no real prospects of improvement after revision, it may be rejected straightaway.
In general, the following may be checked in a review
- Structure of the submitted article and its relevance to authors’ guidelines
- Purpose and Objective of the article
- Sufficient details of Materials and Methods
- Appropriateness between the Introduction and the discussion section
- conclusion/ suggestions provided
- sufficiency of References provided to validate the content
- English grammar, punctuation and spelling(just mention if English editing is required)
- Suitability of the article to the need of the field
As a reviewer you should also:
- Write clearly so your comments can be understood by people whose first language is not English
- Avoid using complex or unusual words.
- Number your points and refer to the section of the manuscript while making specific comments
- If you have been asked to comment only on some specific parts or aspects of the manuscript, you should clearly indicate these in the comments
- be robust, yet polite while writing your comments
Reviewers are suggested to view:
for further guidance on reviewing process.
Privacy and Confidentiality
In Journal of Cancer Research Updates, manuscripts are dealt at each step with due respect for authors’ confidentiality. While submitting their manuscripts to the journal authors entrust editors regarding the results of their scientific work and creative efforts which may be crucial for their reputation and career. Reviewers must keep in mind that any sort of disclosure of the confidential details during review of the manuscript may violate authors’ rights. Same applies for Reviewers’ rights to confidentiality, which must be respected by the editor. Only where any evident case of dishonesty or deception is suspected, confidentiality may need to be breached, otherwise it is to be honored at all costs. Editors must also not disclose information about manuscripts (including their receipt, content, status in the reviewing process, criticism by reviewers, or ultimate fate) to anyone other than the authors and reviewers. Any requests to use the materials for legal proceedings should not be considered without authors’ permission.
Editors must be very clear in informing the reviewers that manuscripts sent for review are privileged communications and the private property of the authors. Therefore, no reviewer and editorial staff member is allowed to publicly discussing the authors’ work or appropriating their ideas before the manuscripts’ final publication. Reviewers are not allowed to make copies of the manuscript for their record keeping or share it with others, except where a special permission has been granted by the editors. Reviewers are supposed to return or destroy copies of manuscripts after submitting their review comments. Editors should also not keep copies of rejected manuscripts. Reviewer comments are never to be published or otherwise publicized without permission of the author, reviewer, and editor.
COPE’s Guidelines & Flowcharts:
Neoplasia Research is committed to follow and apply guidelines of Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) in designing its reviewing and publishing processes as well as dealing with issues related to them. For more information, please click here.
To promote transparency without hindering publication schedule Neoplasia Research execute every possible step to be vigilant about potential conflicts of interest however, guaranteeing that our Editors are aware of all competing interests of reviewers is beyond truthfulness. Therefore, we appealour reviewers to report to the Editor-in-Chief/Handling Editor if they note any potential competing interest during the course of a manuscript review process. Moreover, reviewers’ own conflict of interest with the content or authors of the manuscript should also be conveyed to the editors. If the assigned editor will find it appropriate to remove the reviewer, weighing the type and extent of the conflict, other reviewers will be contacted for the review.
In particular, scholars from the same institution as the authors, current colleagues, recent colleagues, recent co-authors are avoided as reviewers . The editors are not involved in decisions about articles written by themselves or by their family members/ colleagues; or where the content of article relates to products or servicesfor which editors may have an interest. Neoplasia Research manages Competing interest according to COPE’s directives, for further reading see:
Conflict of Interest in Reviewing Process
Despite taking all measures to ensure a double-bind peer review, the possibility of reviewers knowing the authors cannot be excluded. A reviewer can certainly be relied upon for carrying out an unbiased assessment of an article by the author already known to the reviewer, but following measurements must be given high importance during such situations:
- If a significant conflict of interest exists, the reviewer should reveal this to the editor;
- If the conflict of interest may cause a significant bias, whether positive or negative, it is advisable to decline the review request;
- Judge the article only; refraining from any personal comment/critique at any time. This is more likely to lead the authors for to better working.