Open Science and Reporting Animal Studies: Who’s Accountable?


What responsibility do scientists have to report the experimental work and analyses they do on animals fully and transparently, and what responsibilities do funders, journal editors, and reviewers have to ensure that what is reported is done so appropriately? While the answer to both of these questions might seem obvious, the accumulating evidence suggests that the actual reporting done in publications is far from ideal (See Below)

The ARRIVE guidelines now come with a useful checklist for authors, which authors can submit alongside their manuscript with the relevant sections completed. All the journals at PLOS are editorially independent and are making their own decisions about whether and how to implement the guidelines. PLOS Medicine has already mandated that authors submit the checklist for the few relevant articles it publishes, and PLOS Medicine editors will take the checklist items into account as they evaluate the research. PLOS ONE is currently encouraging the use of the checklist and is likely to mandate its inclusion in all submissions reporting experimental in vivo work starting in 2014. We strongly encourage authors to submit the completed checklist to enhance reusability of data, and we welcome feedback on this from the community.

One of the metrics about science is what is the impact of the work.
PLos One currently publishes over 20,000 papers a year. If PLoS One implements the ARRIVE guidelines. 

Even after prodding, animal researchers omit key details

“There’s this very vocal minority of clinicians who say ‘animal data is rubbish, it never translates into human benefit’,” Baker says. “By doing bad science which is of poor quality, we just pander to that problem.”

Did ProfB really say that? Did he mean the majority? 🙂

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