Aims and Scope

PLOS Currents: Evidence on Genomic Tests is an Open Access publication channel for the rapid communication of summaries of available data on genetic tests and other health-related applications of genomic research.

Genetic tests are increasingly available but information on their validity and utility is often fragmented and difficult to access, publications at PLOS Currents: Evidence on Genomic Tests aim to make those information readily available and highlight important gaps in knowledge.

PLOS Currents: Evidence on Genomic Tests is a way to share data and summaries immediately while ensuring that they will be permanently archived and citable. The site provides immediate open access to all content, ensuring that authors reach the widest possible audience.

Scope

A broad view is taken of the definition of genomic tests; for example, many proteomic testing schemes and protein-based tests may be suitable topics (although tests for single biomarkers or antigens are generally not suitable). Applications that are termed “genetic tests” are likely to make good subject matter.

Authors may wish to consult the definition of genetic testing provided on page 17 of the 2008 SACGHS report U.S. System of Oversight of Genetic Testing: A Response to the Charge of the Secretary of Health and Human Services. One potential source of topics is the Genomic Applications for Practice and Prevention Knowledge Base (GAPPKB).

In addition to summaries of available data on genomic tests, PLOS Currents: Evidence on Genomic Tests also considers the following article types:

- Methods: Methods articles report summaries of methods, protocols and statistical approaches applicable to the evaluation of genetic testing. Advances in knowledge synthesis, guideline development, decision modeling and economic analyses would all be appropriate areas of focus in this article category.

- Bioinformatics: This article type covers summaries of modeling and computational approaches –including software and databases- that are relevant to the evaluation of genomic tests and/or the continuum of translational research in genomics.

- Commentary  articles: This article type allows the discussion of issues or arguments related to the ethical, social and legal aspects of genetic testing. This article type can cover proposals and opinions, or describe areas of research on genomic tests that require further attention, either due to a gap in knowledge or ethical and/or legal concerns. Paired articles presenting different aspects of the same topic in a Debate format are also be suitable for consideration.

Publication process

The submissions are reviewed by a group of leading researchers in the field – the Board of Reviewers. The reviewers make a rapid determination as to whether a contribution is intelligible, relevant, ethical and scientifically credible. Those submissions deemed appropriate are posted immediately at PLOS Currents: Evidence on Genomic Tests and publicly archived at PubMed Central.

It will be possible to revise contributions, for example in light of new data; such revisions will also be subject to approval by Reviewer Board. Different versions of the same article will be identifiable and all versions will be archived and separately citable.

The content is published under a Creative Commons Attribution License, enabling unrestricted distribution and use of the published materials, provided that its authors are properly credited. Every accepted submission will receive a permanent identifier that can be linked to and cited in other publications.

The content in PLOS Currents: Evidence on Genomic Tests is subject to the standard PLOS Terms of Use.