Editorial Introduction to the First Issue
It is my greatest honor and pleasure to introduce the new scientific journal titled Annals of Biomedical and Clinical Research (ABCR). It is a rare opportunity and privilege to be able to launch a new scientific journal, which makes us, the editorial board, especially proud. We are hopeful that we will be worthy of the responsibilities and commitments brought by such an endeavor and we hereby vow to lay down a stable foundation for development and improvement of the journal in the future. In front of you sits the inaugural edition of our new journal which is an official scientific journal of the University of Mostar School of Medicine (UMSM).
UMSM was founded in 1997. Founders’ goal was to educate a new generation of physicians who would subsequently improve the functioning of the entire health care system in Mostar and the wider Herzegovina region (1). The scientific work at UMSM started by organizing 2-day seminars titled “Research planning and scientific manuscript composition” delivered by representatives of the Croatian Medical Journal (CMJ). These seminars were very successful and well attended by both faculty and students at UMSM. Final year medical students in particular found the courses very helpful since, approaching their graduation, they start work on their graduation thesis which is supposed to be a small, but authentic scientific project. Some of the more prominent theses were then published in CMJ (2).
The idea for ABCR existed for a long time, but it is finally realized now through diligent work at the UMSM Department for final examination and graduation thesis. As it is already said, students of the final years, in order to receive their diploma on School of Medicine, University of Mostar, have to present their graduation thesis which is in its nature small scientific research. Under the supervision of an assigned mentor, each final year medical student presents a graduation thesis which on average yields 50 research manuscripts yearly. Some of these manuscripts end up published, however most of them are never published and they generally end up collecting dust in never ending library shelves, whether because of low encouragement of the mentor or because of the wrong attitudes that the research served only in order to receive their diploma. Because of that, majority of student works from the previous years are not published anywhere which is a big detriment for ex-students who put their effort, material resources and time to collect data and compose a manuscript. Attempts to remedy this included a recent UMSM requirement for all of its medical students to submit their graduation thesis in English and were only partially successful. Therefore, the editorial board considered it worthwhile to provide a publishing output for regional scientific work by launching a scientific journal focusing on biomedical and clinical sciences. It was decided that the journal, in the spirit of modern scientific discourse, would be published in English, and it would be accessible world-wide for presenting quality student manuscripts under rigorous peer review process. This project would give newly graduated doctors an introduction into the scientific world at the beginning of their career and would concurrently promote UMSM as a scientific institution.
ABCR is an interdisciplinary journal which covers all fields of biomedical and clinical science will be published online, however limited print edition will also be available through cooperation with the university publishing house PRESUM. During the initial phase we intend to publish biannually, with plans to expand as we gain publicity and influence by indexing in the main search engines and index bases. ABCR is an open access journal published in the best interest of medical science and available online at http://www.abcr-mefmo.org. It will be publishing original scientific articles pertaining to bio and clinical medicine, including but not limited to reviews, case studies, letters to the editor, book reviews, and conference proceedings, as well as special texts about public, ethical and social aspects of science, texts about innovations in the field of science, scientific methodology, statistical methods, etc.
The primary purpose of the journal is promotion of science and scientific method at UMSM. Through ABCR, young scientists from UMSM will have a chance to experience and learn good research practices. We as editors will employ the highest ethics and quality control standards. We will strive to review, publish and present scientific work in a transparent, honest, complete and unbiased way, with respect towards colleagues, study participants, society, ecosystems, cultural heritage and environment (3). We owe this responsibility to the scientific process from the original study question to the final publication. These high standards will be achieved through a double-blind review process by internationally acknowledged specialists in the relevant fields of biomedical science. This method minimises bias and ensures an objective evaluation of the text regardless of the author’s reputation. Additionally, the journal is intended for connecting scientists internationally, exchanging scientific accomplishments and ideas and discussing important medical issues. Through this project we also hope to contribute towards the general development of science, use of scientific accomplishments in medical practice, improvement of health care and population health in general.
All authors of the manuscripts accepted for publishing will be asked to name their ORCID ID, individual author contributions, any potential conflicts of interest and sources of any financial contributions received towards their work. They will also be asked to provide a detailed description of any study aspects with potential ethical implications such as relevant approvals from institutional ethics committees, informed consent from human subjects etc. This inaugural issue consists of nine authentic scientific articles for which we hope will enrich your current medical knowledge and be of use in your future scientific and clinical work.
Ever since the idea of ABCR was conceived, the initiative for launching it received decisive support of the entire UMSM board, to which I owe my immeasurable gratitude. I would also like to thank the members of the Board of doctor’s study UMSM who took over the role of the initial Editorial board and contributed their ideas, critical reviews and observations to help realise this project. A special thank you also goes out to the members of the journal editorial board who are internationally acknowledged experts in their respective fields. Despite their own obligations, they were willing to invest their time and expertise for the articles presented here to be high-quality and to fulfil the aims of the journal. It was my great privilege to gather the editorial board and hence work with the team of talented young scientists, doctors and medical students. Just starting their medical journey, medical students are eager to work and learn from their senior colleagues. Their involvement is instrumental for the survival and development of the journal which, I hope, will be well renowned in the scientific community. Other thanks go out to the academic painter Ivana Kevo for graphic design of the journal cover, and to Tomislav Duje Grabovac for the maintenance of our web platform. Equally, if not more, we express our gratitude to the authors who sent their manuscripts, as well as to reviewers who ultimately enabled the publication of this inaugural edition.
Finally, I would like to invite you to send your research manuscripts to ABCR in the future so this journal can fulfil its mission and benefit the entire medical profession and scientific community. In the name of our editorial board, the authors, reviewers and publishers I would like to warmly welcome you to our first ABCR issue.