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About PLOS Biology

PLOS Biology (eISSN-1545-7885; ISSN-1544-9173) is an open-access, peer-reviewed general biology journal published by PLOS, a nonprofit organization of scientists and physicians committed to making the world's scientific and medical literature a public resource. New articles are published online weekly; issues are published monthly.

Open Access

PLOS applies the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license to all works we publish. Under the CC BY license, authors retain ownership of the copyright for their article, but authors allow anyone to download, reuse, reprint, modify, distribute, and/or copy articles in PLOS journals, so long as the original authors and source are cited. No permission is required from the authors or the publishers.

Publication Fees

To provide Open Access, PLOS uses a business model to offset expenses—including those of peer review management, journal production and online hosting and archiving—by charging a publication fee to the authors, institutions or funders for each article published.

Publication fees vary by journal and are payable for articles upon acceptance.

PLOS believes that lack of funds should not be a barrier to Open Access publication. Since its inception, PLOS has provided individual fee support and institutional fee support programs. The current offering includes:

PLOS Global Participation Initiative (Low- and Middle-Income Country Assistance)

Authors' research which is funded primarily (50% or more of the work contained within the article) by an institution or organization from eligible low- and middle-income countries will receive partial (group 2 countries) or full (group 1 countries) fee funding paid by the PLOS Global Participation Initiative (GPI). Group 2 PLOS GPI country authors who need to request additional support should apply for PLOS Publication Fee Assistance instead of the PLOS GPI.

PLOS Publication Fee Assistance (PFA)

Publication Fee Assistance is intended for authors who demonstrate financial need. Information about an applicant's application status for fee assistance will not be disclosed to journal editors or reviewers. PLOS publication decisions will continue to be based solely on editorial criteria.

PLOS Institutional Fee Support Programs

PLOS currently offers two institutional programs to support Open Access scientific publishing. Participating institutions have arrangements with PLOS to administer payment for partial or full publication fees for their institutions' authors. To be eligible, authors must be a corresponding author affiliated with the institution or agency in the Institutional Account Program (fully paid or restricted) or Institutional Membership Program (10% publication fee discount). Authors who are eligible for Institutional Membership Program discounts and need to request additional support should apply for PLOS PFA instead of the Institutional Membership Program.

Additional External Funds

Authors may also be eligible for direct funding from their institution or funder, which may be different from the PLOS Institutional programs. See additional Open Access funds for examples. To confirm amounts and details of funding and eligibility, contact the organization as indicated.

Measures of Impact

At PLOS, we believe that articles in all journals should be assessed on their own merits rather than on the basis of the journal in which they were published.  PLOS journals have therefore initiated a program to provide a growing set of measures and indicators of impact at the article level that will include citation metrics, usage statistics, blogosphere coverage, social bookmarks and expert assessment. The long-term vision is to bring the views and activities of entire communities to bear, using the wealth of opportunities offered online, to provide new, meaningful and efficient mechanisms for research assessment. For more information on article-level metrics see the PLOS blog.

Scope

PLOS Biology features works of exceptional significance, originality, and relevance in all areas of biological science, from molecules to ecosystems, including works at the interface of other disciplines, such as chemistry, medicine, and mathematics. Our audience is the international scientific community as well as educators, policy makers, patient advocacy groups, and interested members of the public around the world.

Contents

PLOS Biology publishes outstanding primary research articles in all aspects of biology, from molecules to ecosystems. We also publish various magazine articles:

  • Synopses are digests of research articles that are accessible to researchers in all disciplines as well as a lay readership.
  • Community Pages provide a platform for organizations and societies to highlight their efforts to enhance the dissemination and value of scientific knowledge.
  • Unsolved Mysteries discuss a topic of biological importance that is poorly understood and in need of research attention.
  • Primers provide a concise introduction into an important aspect of biology highlighted by a current PLOS Biology research article.
  • Essays articulate an opinion on a specific topic of broad interest to scientists.
  • News Features, written by science journalists, report on topical or controversial issues of interest to scientists and the general public.
  • Perspectives provide experts with a forum to comment on topical or controversial issues of broad interest.
  • Historical and Philosophical Perspectives provide professional historians and philosophers of science with a forum to reflect on topical issues in contemporary biology.
  • Book reviews and more.

Indexing and Archiving

PLOS Biology is indexed in PubMed, MEDLINE, PubMed Central, Scopus, Google Scholar, the Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS), RefAware, EMBASE, PsychInfo, Web of Science as well as being searchable via the Web of Knowledge. In addition, PLOS Biology is formally archived via PubMed Central.

About PLOS

PLOS is a non-profit organization of scientists and physicians committed to making the world's scientific and medical literature a freely available public resource. For more information about PLOS, visit www.plos.org.

Comments

PLOS Biology provides tools to facilitate community evaluation and discourse around published articles. See our guidelines explaining how you can add Comments to any PLOS Biology article.