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JID Innovations: Skin Science from Molecules to Population Health

      With this issue of the JID, the SID and ESDR announce the launch of a new journal, JID Innovations. As the name suggests, this is a new kind of journal. JID Innovations will focus on providing the world's scientific community with open access to high quality, peer reviewed studies on all aspects of science related to skin and skin diseases. As discussed in the previous editorial by Dr Udey, this journal is being launched in part as a response to the growing requirements by several funding sources throughout the world that all knowledge arising from their support be freely and immediately available to all readers. With JID Innovations, no longer will the ability to afford a subscription, by a library or an individual, hinder access to new knowledge. The SID and the ESDR are taking the bold step to ensure that advances in skin science are not only subject to rigorous peer review but also easily and freely accessible to all the world’s scientists and to the public.
      The scope of JID Innovations is by design broad. As our subtitle—“Skin science from molecules to population health”—suggests, we will publish articles on all aspects of skin biology and pathology. We are interested in molecular mechanisms and population health. We will be soliciting “review” articles with a focus on what experiments need to be done, looking forward, not back. We will be interested both in studies that close knowledge gaps and those that expose gaps in our current thinking. We will also seek descriptions of new methods that have great potential in the investigation of skin and skin diseases. We will pursue studies that stimulate and guide future studies, molecular studies that suggest new therapeutic interventions, as well as small clinical trials that provide potentially critical clues for mechanisms of disease.
      With such a broad scope, it is fair to ask what criteria we will use to select articles for publication. Just as in conventional journals, quality will be the touchstone for all we do. That quality will be ensured by the stringent peer review. Where we differ from conventional journals will be in what we will ask of authors and of reviewers. We will judge all studies on three distinct questions:
      • 1.
        Does the study address an important question?
      • 2.
        Are the methods utilized sufficient to address the question, and have they been performed in a rigorous manner?
      • 3.
        Has the data been analyzed in an appropriate way?
      If the study meets these criteria, it should be available to the entire scientific community. So-called ”negative studies” that address important questions and are well done are important in formulating future hypotheses, and they should be published. Clinical trials on small, localized populations help researchers move towards larger definitive trials more quickly, and they should be published. Well done studies that contradict current dogma open the scientific community’s eyes to new paradigms, and they should be published. JID Innovations is committed to the principle that timely, barrier-free circulation of ideas is the best way to advance understanding.
      “To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle, requires creative imagination and marks real advance in science.” –Albert Einstein
      JID Innovations will also be innovative in our publication strategies. JID Innovations will simplify the initial submission process. Authors will be able to submit their manuscripts without strict formatting requirements, provided all of the essential elements of an original article are present (i.e., abstract, keywords, introduction, materials and methods, results, conclusions, figures, tables, and references). Only upon our request for revision will authors be asked to conform to our publication style. Peer reviews will be focused on the science not the format. We will have no artificial restrictions on publication dates. Accepted articles will immediately be available to all online. JID Innovations will coordinate with the JID in managing submissions that fall outside of JID’s scope. If the authors agree, articles that cannot be accepted by the JID will be forwarded directly to JID Innovations with their reviews. JID Innovations editors may then make an immediate decision regarding the article’s suitability for publication, eliminating duplication of work for authors and reviewers and moving knowledge to our communities faster. As JID Innovations matures we will continue to search for more efficiencies in disseminating knowledge to the entire scientific community.
      I have written about our aspirations for JID Innovations, but we must also address some practical matters. Open access publication does have associated costs. While readers will not be charged to access JID Innovations, there will be publication processing fees for each accepted article. These fees have been set at $1,500 per article for SID and ESDR members and $2,000 for non-members. Investigators from developing countries or with special circumstances are eligible for discounted publication rates, as described by Research4Life (www.research4life.org) or by appeal to the Editor. Finally, we anticipate accepting submissions in mid to late September at www.JIDInnovations.org. We are all enthusiastic about this opportunity to help investigators present their work to the entire scientific community through high quality and efficient peer review and publication processes.
      With these goals in front of us, we are looking to the whole of our scientific communities for support. Support this new endeavor by submitting your work for publication, by serving as a reviewer to judge and evaluate submissions for publication, and by reading and citing the articles expressing the breadth of new knowledge that will be available in JID Innovations.
      I am energized by this opportunity and grateful to the SID and the ESDR for allowing me to serve as Editor. I look forward to working with the entire scientific community, all of whom are committed to advancing our understanding of skin biology, pathology, and the treatment of skin disease. Scientific discovery is moving at a pace we would not have imagined a decade ago. JID Innovations will seek to maximize the value of all knowledge for our field, ensure its quality through rigorous peer review, disseminate it rapidly to the entire community, and promote the publication of novel and important studies.
      Jean Piaget said, “Scientific knowledge is in perpetual evolution; it finds itself changed from one day to the next.” JID Innovations is committed to leading the perpetual evolution of our understanding of skin biology, pathology, and treatment of skin diseases for all. I look forward to beginning this journey with you.

      Conflict of Interest

      The author states no conflict of interest.