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1.
PLoS Biol ; 20(2): e3001285, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1662437

ABSTRACT

Amid the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, preprints in the biomedical sciences are being posted and accessed at unprecedented rates, drawing widespread attention from the general public, press, and policymakers for the first time. This phenomenon has sharpened long-standing questions about the reliability of information shared prior to journal peer review. Does the information shared in preprints typically withstand the scrutiny of peer review, or are conclusions likely to change in the version of record? We assessed preprints from bioRxiv and medRxiv that had been posted and subsequently published in a journal through April 30, 2020, representing the initial phase of the pandemic response. We utilised a combination of automatic and manual annotations to quantify how an article changed between the preprinted and published version. We found that the total number of figure panels and tables changed little between preprint and published articles. Moreover, the conclusions of 7.2% of non-COVID-19-related and 17.2% of COVID-19-related abstracts undergo a discrete change by the time of publication, but the majority of these changes do not qualitatively change the conclusions of the paper.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Information Dissemination/methods , Peer Review, Research/trends , Periodicals as Topic/trends , Publications/trends , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , Peer Review, Research/methods , Peer Review, Research/standards , Periodicals as Topic/standards , Periodicals as Topic/statistics & numerical data , Publications/standards , Publications/statistics & numerical data , Publishing/standards , Publishing/statistics & numerical data , Publishing/trends , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/physiology
2.
PLoS One ; 16(9): e0257093, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1435606

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the reporting quality of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) regarding patients with COVID-19 and analyse the influence factors. METHODS: PubMed, Embase, Web of Science and the Cochrane Library databases were searched to collect RCTs regarding patients with COVID-19. The retrieval time was from the inception to December 1, 2020. The CONSORT 2010 statement was used to evaluate the overall reporting quality of these RCTs. RESULTS: 53 RCTs were included. The study showed that the average reporting rate for 37 items in CONSORT checklist was 53.85% with mean overall adherence score of 13.02±3.546 (ranged: 7 to 22). The multivariate linear regression analysis showed the overall adherence score to the CONSORT guideline was associated with journal impact factor (P = 0.006), and endorsement of CONSORT statement (P = 0.014). CONCLUSION: Although many RCTs of COVID-19 have been published in different journals, the overall reporting quality of these articles was suboptimal, it can not provide valid evidence for clinical decision-making and systematic reviews. Therefore, more journals should endorse the CONSORT statement, authors should strictly follow the relevant provisions of the CONSORT guideline when reporting articles. Future RCTs should particularly focus on improvement of detailed reporting in allocation concealment, blinding and estimation of sample size.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Publications/standards , Publishing/standards , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic/standards , Data Management/standards , Guideline Adherence/standards , Humans , Journal Impact Factor , PubMed/standards , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity
3.
Disaster Med Public Health Prep ; 14(4): e34-e35, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1360151

ABSTRACT

This article reflects on the importance and the impact of scientific publications in the midst of a global health crisis. It aims to raise awareness about the responsibility of accepting manuscripts in such sensitive times and is intended to motivate the production of high-quality papers through a critical vision.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Periodicals as Topic/standards , Humans , Periodicals as Topic/trends , Publications/standards , Publications/trends
4.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun ; 538: 1, 2021 01 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1324041
5.
Rev Med Interne ; 42(8): 583-590, 2021 Aug.
Article in French | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1318949

ABSTRACT

The present article details the publication process and the vicissitudes of three articles about SARS-CoV-2 and its related disease (COVID-19). The three articles were published one month apart between March and May 2020. Their mediatization led French health authorities to intervene. Our article does not focus on and does not assess the scientific quality of the articles presented, but only aims to open the reflection on medical publication. Beyond the description of these three specific cases, this article raises issues about article retraction, peer-reviewing, preprints, authorship and the dissemination of scientific medical information, including through the mass media. It discusses new publishing modes and the dissemination of published information in clinical research.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communications Media , Information Dissemination , Public Opinion , Publishing , COVID-19/epidemiology , Data Accuracy , Decision Making , France/epidemiology , Humans , Public Health Administration/standards , Publications/standards , Publications/statistics & numerical data , Publishing/standards , Publishing/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/physiology
9.
Antimicrob Resist Infect Control ; 10(1): 10, 2021 01 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1028908

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Translating research into practice is a central priority within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Roadmap. The underlying aim of the NIH Roadmap is to accelerate the movement of scientific findings into practical health care provisions through translational research. MAIN TEXT: Despite the advances in health sciences, emerging infectious diseases have become more frequent in recent decades. Furthermore, emerging and reemerging pathogens have led to several global public health challenges. A question, and to an extent a concern, arises from this: Why our health care system is experiencing several challenges in encountering the coronavirus outbreak, despite the ever-growing advances in sciences, and the exponential rise in the number of published articles in the first quartile journals and even the ones among the top 1%? CONCLUSION: Two responses could be potentially provided to the above question: First, there seems to be a significant gap between our theoretical knowledge and practice. And second that many scholars and scientists publish papers only to have a longer list of publications, and therefore publishing is viewed as a personal objective, rather than for improving communities' public health.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Publications/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Biomedical Research/standards , Biomedical Research/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Policy , Publications/standards , Publishing/standards , Publishing/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
11.
J Med Internet Res ; 22(11): e21559, 2020 11 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-918974

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has spread at an alarming speed, and effective treatment for the disease is still lacking. The body of evidence on COVID-19 has been increasing at an impressive pace, creating the need for a method to rapidly assess the current knowledge and identify key information. Gold standard methods such as systematic reviews and meta-analyses are regarded unsuitable because they have a narrow scope and are very time consuming. OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to explore the published scientific literature on COVID-19 and map the research evolution during the early phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: We performed a PubMed search to analyze the titles, keywords, and abstracts of published papers on COVID-19. We used latent Dirichlet allocation modeling to extract topics and conducted a trend analysis to understand the temporal changes in research for each topic, journal impact factor (JIF), and geographic origin. RESULTS: Based on our search, we identified 16,670 relevant articles dated between February 14, 2020, and June 1, 2020. Of these, 6 articles were reports from peer-reviewed randomized trials on patients with COVID-19. We identified 14 main research topics, of which the most common topics were health care responses (2812/16,670, 16.86%) and clinical manifestations (1828/16,670, 10.91%). We found an increasing trend for research on clinical manifestations and protective measures and a decreasing trend for research on disease transmission, epidemiology, health care response, and radiology. Publications on protective measures, immunology, and clinical manifestations were associated with the highest JIF. The overall median JIF was 3.7 (IQR 2.6-5.9), and we found that the JIF for these publications declined over time. The top countries producing research were the United States, China, Italy, and the United Kingdom. CONCLUSIONS: In less than 6 months since the novel coronavirus was first detected, a remarkably high number of research articles on COVID-19 have been published. Here, we discuss and present the temporal changes in the available COVID-19 research during the early phase of the pandemic. Our findings may aid researchers and policy makers to form a structured view of the current COVID-19 evidence base and provide further research directions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Publications/standards , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Humans , Research Design
12.
PLoS One ; 15(11): e0241826, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-914237

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: A debate about the scientific quality of COVID-19 themed research has emerged. We explored whether the quality of evidence of COVID-19 publications is lower when compared to nonCOVID-19 publications in the three highest ranked scientific medical journals. METHODS: We searched the PubMed Database from March 12 to April 12, 2020 and identified 559 publications in the New England Journal of Medicine, the Journal of the American Medical Association, and The Lancet which were divided into COVID-19 (cases, n = 204) and nonCOVID-19 (controls, n = 355) associated content. After exclusion of secondary, unauthored, response letters and non-matching article types, 155 COVID-19 publications (including 13 original articles) and 130 nonCOVID-19 publications (including 52 original articles) were included in the comparative analysis. The hierarchical level of evidence was determined for each publication included and compared between cases and controls as the main outcome. A quantitative scoring of quality was carried out for the subgroup of original articles. The numbers of authors and citation rates were also compared between groups. RESULTS: The 130 nonCOVID-19 publications were associated with higher levels of evidence on the level of evidence pyramid, with a strong association measure (Cramer's V: 0.452, P <0.001). The 155 COVID-19 publications were 186-fold more likely to be of lower evidence (95% confidence interval [CI] for odds ratio, 7.0-47; P <0.001). The quantitative quality score (maximum possible score, 28) was significantly different in favor of nonCOVID-19 (mean difference, 11.1; 95% CI, 8.5-13.7; P <0.001). There was a significant difference in the early citation rate of the original articles that favored the COVID-19 original articles (median [interquartile range], 45 [30-244] vs. 2 [1-4] citations; P <0.001). CONCLUSIONS: We conclude that the quality of COVID-19 publications in the three highest ranked scientific medical journals is below the quality average of these journals. These findings need to be verified at a later stage of the pandemic.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections , Medical Writing , Pandemics , Periodicals as Topic/standards , Pneumonia, Viral , Publications/standards , COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2
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