The International Journal of Romanian Society of Endocrinology / Registered in 1938

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Ethical Guidelines for Research

Expectation of Ethical Conduct

The mission of Romanian Society for Endocrinology and Acta Endocrinologica Foundation is to advance excellence in endocrinology and be an integrative force in scientific research and medical practice in Romania. Such progress depends on integrity in the conduct of scientific research and truthful representation of findings.

The journal editors and publication oversight committees of The Endocrine Society are dedicated to upholding high ethical standards in its publications and expect authors and reviewers to do the same.

Editorial Prerogative for Ethical Unsuitability

The editors reserve the right to reject manuscripts describing research that does not meet acceptable standards of research behavior as determined by the Belmont Report, the Geneva Convention, and the Declaration of Helsinki.

Experimental Subjects

All studies involving human subjects or human tissue must be in accordance with the principles set out in the Declaration of Helsinki and must have been formally approved by the appropriate institutional review board, ethical review committee, or equivalent. All manuscripts should indicate that such approval was obtained. The study populations should be described in detail. In many studies details of age, race, and sex are important. In experiments involving any significant risk or discomfort to subjects, it should be documented that informed consent was obtained from the subjects and that an institutional human research committee had approved the investigations. In text, tables and figures subjects must be identified by number or letter rather than by initials or names. Photographs of patients' faces should be included only if scientifically relevant. Authors should obtain written informed consent from the patient (EN) (RO) for use of such photographs."

Guidelines for the Care and Use of Experimental Animals

The Society requires that all studies involving the use of animals published in its journals be conducted in accordance with mandated standards of humane care. The appropriateness of the experimental procedures, as well as the species and required number of animals used, must be considered in the design of any study. All research animals must be acquired and used in compliance with local laws and institutional regulations.
Research animals must receive appropriate tranquilizers, analgesics, anesthetics and care to minimize pain and discomfort during preoperative, operative, and postoperative procedures. Where the use of anesthetics would negate the results of the experiment, the protocol must be clearly justified and approved by the local institution and according to accepted veterinary medical practice. The health of the animals must be properly monitored. If either the study or the condition of the animals requires that they be killed, it shall be done in a humane manner.

Ethical Guidelines for Publication of Research in Acta Endocrinologica (Buc)

Obligations of Authors

Authorship Conditions

An author should have participated in either the conception or planning of the work, the interpretation of the results and the writing of the paper. An acknowledgment accompanying the paper is appropriate recognition for others who have contributed to a lesser extent, e.g., provision of clones, antisera or cell lines, or reading and reviewing manuscripts in draft. The signature of each author on the Affirmation of Originality and Copyright Release form that must be submitted with the manuscript indicates that all authors have had a part in the writing and final editing of the report, all have been given a copy of the manuscript, all have approved the final version of the manuscript, and all are prepared to take public responsibility for the work, sharing responsibility and accountability for the results.

Authorship Obligations

The foremost obligation of an author is to present a clear, honest, accurate, and complete account of the research performed. Each manuscript should describe a complete study or a completed phase of an extended study. Fragmentation of reports should be avoided. When some of the results are to appear in another journal, in publications of congresses, symposia, workshops, etc., details plus a copy of the other paper(s) should be supplied to the editor. Any preliminary accounts or abstracts of the work, already published, must be referenced in the complete report.

The author has an obligation to: 1) describe the work in sufficient detail to allow others to repeat the work; 2) adhere to the journals' policy regarding preparation of digital images as outlined below; 3) include all relevant data, including those which may not support the hypothesis being tested; 4) cite those publications which have a direct bearing on the novelty and interpretation of the results; 5) make unique resources available to other investigators for academic research purposes, as a condition of publication; 6) ensure no substitution, addition, or deletion of data or text during the proof correction process (after acceptance). Answers to author queries and changes to typographical or printer's errors may be made to proofs. Any other changes will require that the proofs be returned to the editorial office for re-review of the manuscript; 7) If there are any additions, deletions, or changes in position of the names that appear in the authorship line of the originally submitted manuscript, the corresponding author must send to the Editorial Office a brief letter, signed by all authors, stating that they agree to the change.

Scientific Misconduct and Unethical Practices

The Romanian Society for Endocrinology and Acta Endocrinologica Foundation accepts the definitions of plagiarism, fabrication and falsification proposed in the ORI Handbook for Institutional Research Integrity Officers, February 1997, Office of Research Integrity, Public Health Service of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (Washington, DC). Scientific misconduct and unethical acts include, but are not limited to, plagiarism, fabrication, falsification, redundant or duplicate publication, violation of federal, state or institutional rules, and honorary authorship.

The list below includes, but is not limited to, the following prohibited acts:

1. Plagiarism, which includes the theft or misappropriation of intellectual property and the substantial unattributed textual copying of another's work. It does not include authorship or credit disputes. The theft or misappropriation of intellectual property includes the unauthorized use of ideas or unique methods obtained via a privileged communication, such as a grant or manuscript review. Substantial unattributed textual copying of another's work is defined as the unattributed verbatim or nearly verbatim copying of sentences and paragraphs which materially misleads the ordinary reader regarding the contributions of the author. It does not include the limited use of identical or nearly identical phrases which describe a commonly used methodology or previous research. The author must show the editor written permission to quote any information learned personally from another investigator or by reviewing applications for research grants. In the introduction, and especially in the discussion of a paper, the author should cite fairly the work of others that is relevant either to the origin or to the outcome of the research described.

2. Fabrication, which includes making up results and recording or reporting them, in whole or in part.

3. Falsification is manipulating research, materials, equipment or processes, or changing or omitting data or results such that the research is not accurately represented in the research record. It includes the suppressing or altering of data not in agreement with one's hypothesis.

4. Redundant or duplicate publication, which includes the submission of a paper, or portion thereof, that overlaps with one already submitted or published. An author may not submit reports of the same or substantially overlapping research to more than one journal at the same time, unless the author can justify it in letters to both editors.

5. Submission of animal or clinical research conducted without the approval of the institutional animal care and use committee or review board.

6. Honorary authorship is not permitted in Acta Endocrinologica (Buc). Honorary authorship is the inclusion of authors who have not met the definition of authors as described above. An author's signature on the copyright release form submitted with the manuscript and included in the byline of the manuscript indicates that the author agrees to share responsibility and accountability for the results. Alleged misconduct against an author on a manuscript will automatically entail investigation of all co-authors.

Prior Publication

Failure to notify the editor that some results in the manuscript are being or have been previously published will result in placement of a notice in the journal that the authors have violated the Ethical Guidelines for Publication of Research. The journal publishes original research material. Material previously published in whole or in part shall not be considered for publication. This includes materials published in any form of mass communication. At the time of submission, authors must divulge in their cover letter all prior publications or postings of the material in any form of media. Abstracts or posters displayed for colleagues at scientific meetings need not be reported. Other postings of any part of the submitted material on web pages, as well as those essential for participation in required registries will be evaluated by the Editor-In-Chief, who shall determine if those postings are material enough to constitute prior publication.

Copyright Assignment and Affirmation of Originality

Acceptance and publication of any article in Acta Endocrinologica (Buc) is contingent upon the author's warranty that the manuscript has not been published in total or in part, nor is it being submitted or considered for publication in total or in part elsewhere. In addition, the acceptance of any work for publication in Acta Endocrinologica (Buc) is contingent upon the author's assignment and transfer of rights and interest in and the copyright of that work in its current form, and in any subsequent form revised for publication to Romanian Society for Endocrinology and Acta Endocrinologica Foundation.

Obligations of Reviewers

The critical and confidential review of manuscripts is an essential element of research publications. Every scientist has an obligation to contribute to the peer review process by serving as a reviewer. Among the obligations of reviewers is the commitment to providing an expert, critical, and constructive scientific and literary appraisal of research reports in their fields of knowledge, skills, and experience in a fair and unbiased manner. In order to facilitate the prompt sharing of scientific results, it is also the obligation of each reviewer to complete their assignments promptly, within the editor's deadline. Should a delay in their review occur, the reviewer has the obligation to notify the editor at once. Reviewers should not review a manuscript if: 1) they do not think that they are competent to assess the research described, 2) they believe there is a conflict of interest or personal or professional relationship with the author(s) that might bias their assessment of the manuscript, or (3) there is any other situation that could bias their review. Employment at the same institution as one of the authors does not automatically represent a conflict. Having previously reviewed the article for another journal does not disqualify a reviewer, although the editor should be informed so the reviewer's perspective can be considered. In circumstances when reviewers need to recuse themselves, they should notify the editor promptly, preferably with an explanation. If reviewers are uncertain whether they should recuse themselves, they should consult with the editor.
The reviewer should strive to provide accurate, detailed, and constructive criticisms, and the review should be supported by appropriate references, especially if unfavorable. The reviewer should also note whether the work of others is properly cited. If the reviewer notes any substantial resemblance of the manuscript being reviewed to a published paper or to a manuscript submitted at the same time to another journal, they should promptly report this to the editor.

No part of the manuscript under review should ordinarily be revealed to another individual without the permission of the editor. If a reviewer consults a colleague on a particular point, this fact, and the name of the collaborator or consultant, should be reported to the editor, preferably in advance. With these exceptions, a reviewer must obtain through the editor written permission from the authors to use or disclose any of the unpublished content of a manuscript under review.

Obligations of Editors

The Editor-in-Chief directs and supervises the policies of a journal and is responsible for maintaining its scientific and literary quality. The first obligation of an Editor-in-Chief and the journal Editors is to make certain that all authors receive confidential, expert, critical, and unbiased reviews of their work in a timely fashion. The editors and members of the editor's staff should not disclose any information about a manuscript submitted for review to anyone except the reviewers or authors or those working on their behalf.
An editor may not take part in the editorial management of any report of the editor's own research because that involves conflict of interest. An editor must also avoid conflict of interest in the editorial management of reports of research closely related to the editor's own research. An editor may not use unpublished information of any kind from a submitted manuscript without written permission of the author.
If an editor is presented with convincing evidence that the main substance or conclusions of a report published in an editor's journal is erroneous or determined to be the result of misconduct, the editor should facilitate prompt publication of a report pointing out the error and, if possible, correcting it. The report may be written by all the authors.

Policy Regarding Advertisements

Acta Endocrinologica (Buc) contains advertisements but advertising is not allowed to influence editorial decisions. Readers will be able to readily distinguish between editorial material and advertising. The juxtaposition of advertisements promoting specific products and scientific articles discussing such products is, as far as possible, avoided. Acta Endocrinologica Foundation and the editors do not provide unpublished advance information about journal content for forthcoming issues to agencies involved in soliciting advertisements or companies purchasing advertising space. The appearance of any advertisement does not imply warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services or of their effectiveness, quality, or safety by the Romania Society for Endocrinology. The Society has the prerogative to reject any advertisement it deems inappropriate. It accepts advertisements only if the advertisers warrant that the advertisement does not contravene legal requirements on trade descriptions, medicines, race relations, or sex discrimination.