Publication Ethics Policy

International Journal of Experimental and Applied Biology is dedicated to upholding the highest standards of publication ethics and integrity. This Publication Ethics Policy outlines the guidelines and principles that authors, reviewers, editors, and the journal itself must adhere to maintain the integrity, credibility, and fairness of data presentation and overall publication process. All parties involved in the publication process are believed to uphold these ethical standards. International Journal of Applied and Experimental Biology abides by the Code of Conduct of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and is firmly committed to adhere to its Best Practice Guidelines.

1. Authorship, Author Responsibilities, and Contributorship

a. Authorship should be based on substantial contributions to the research work and the preparation of the manuscript. All authors must have made significant intellectual contributions to the investigation/study.
b. All listed authors must have reviewed and approved the final version of the manuscript and agree to its submission for publication.
c. The corresponding author is responsible for ensuring that all co-authors are appropriately credited, and if there any conflicts of interest, they must be disclosed.
d. Proper acknowledgment of the work of others must be reflected, and all sources of funding or support should be properly revealed.
e. Citation Manipulation: Submitted manuscripts that include citations primarily intended to artificially increase the number of citations to a specific author's work or articles published in a particular journal will face sanctions for citation manipulation.
f. Data Fabrication and Falsification: Manuscripts that are found to contain fabricated or falsified experimental results, including image manipulation, will be subject to sanctions for data fabrication and falsification.

1.1 Author contributions

Author contribution explains the extent of contribution each author makes to the manuscript. The author contribution section should have information on the following:

a. Conception and design
b. Conduction of research
c. Collection of data
d. Analysis and interpretation of data
e. Manuscript writing
f. Review and final approval of manuscript

2.1 Changes to Authorship or Contributorship

If any change (additions, deletions, changes of order to the authors, or contributions attributed differently) arises in authorship and/or contributorship after the initial submission or when the article is under review process, a formal approval from all authors must be submitted the to the Chief Editor.

When disagreements among authors arise, IJAaEB follows the guidance of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE): https://publicationethics.org/guidance/Flowcharts.

2. Complaints and Appeals

The journal encourages the reporting of ethical concerns or complaints related to published papers. These concerns should be submitted to the chief editor, who will handle them in accordance with the journal's established procedures as well as the guidelines of COPE.

a. Appeals regarding editorial decisions should be submitted in writing to the chief editor, who will address them in an impartial and fair manner.
b. An appeal against rejection/decline of a manuscript will be dealt with by the chief editor/handling editor and they will take any of the following decisions based on the arguments of author(s):

i) to uphold the decision of rejection
ii) if the author(s) arguments seem to be logical, an independent opinion can be sought from a reviewer other than those who have already done to peer-review, and if a positive report is received from neutral reviewer the appeal can be contemplated and another round of peer-review from different reviewers can be obtained; so, the final decision of rejection/acceptance lies with the chief editor and the complainant is informed of the decision accordingly. Decisions on appeals are considered final, and new submissions take precedence/priority over appeals.
iii) Complaint about inordinate delay in manuscript processing. The chief editor will critically examine, and investigate the matter if it is of substance; the complainant will be informed accordingly.
iv) Complaint about author's or reviewer's misconduct: The chief editor will thoroughly investigate the matter and the complainant will be informed accordingly of the decision made by the journal management.

3. Conflict of Interest/Competing Interest

A competing interest means anything that intercedes the manuscript presentation, peer-review, editorial decision-making, or publication of manuscripts submitted to IJAaEB. Competing interests maybe personal, professional, financial or non-financial arising from a person, institution, or organization. Thus, all authors, editors and reviewers, and readers, are advised to declare all competing interests.

Competing interest should be disclosed forthwith. In case of non-declaration of competing interests, the manuscript will be immediately rejected. If an unrevealed competing interest appears after publication of a manuscript, IJAaEB will take appropriate action following the COPE guidelines.

There are two major types of competing interests, i.e., financial and non-financial

i) Financial competing interests include but are not restricted to stocks or shares ownership, paid consultancy and employment, research grants, travel grants, gifts/donations, patent applications, etc.

ii) Non-financial competing interests may arise from membership of an advisory board, relationships with funding organizations, personal relationship with persons involved in the submission or review of a manuscript, e.g., authors, reviewers, editorial board members of IJAaEB, etc

4. Declaration of Competing Interests

a. Authors must declare all competing interests such as names, details and role of all funding sources; they must also affirm that they have not served as member of editorial board of the journal wherein they are submitting.
b. Reviewers should not have co-authored publications with anyone of the authors during the past 5 years; have not been colleagues in the same department or organization during the past 5 years; have not supervised research work presented in the manuscript; have not a personal relationship with any of the authors; or any financial benefit arising from the manuscript being reviewed.
c. Readers can comment on published articles in IJAaEB by declaring their personal, financial or nonfinancial competing interests.

d. Editorial Ethics Policy

General Duties and Responsibilities of Journal Editors
The Journal Editors are accountable for maintaining the publication's quality and integrity throughout the editorial and publishing process. Their responsibilities include:
- To ensure confidentiality of submitted manuscripts.
- To provide guidelines to all stakeholders (authors, reviewers, editors) involved in the publication process.
- To respond to feedback, and complaints on publishing process or published content to improve the journal's performance and scientific accuracy.
- The Journal Editors provide detailed guidelines to authors for manuscript preparation and publication process.
- The Journal Editors make available instructions to reviewers and ensure fair, and timely reviews.
-The Journal Editors reserve the right to reject manuscripts if conflicts of interest jeopardize the objectivity of the research. For example, The Editors can ask authors to provide digital images or raw data.
-The Journal Editors have the authority to make necessary changes to published content, issue retractions, or publish clarifications, as and when required.
- Digital images in manuscripts accepted for publication will be scrutinized by the Journal production department for any indication of manipulation. If evidence of inappropriate image manipulation is detected, the Journal Editors may ask for the original data to be supplied.
- Editors involved in deciding the fate of submitted manuscripts should refrain from taking editorial decisions if they have relationships that pose considerable conflicts related to articles under processing.
- Editors may have personal, financial or non-financial types of conflict of interest.
- Editors should stay away from taking decisions on manuscripts submitted from their own institution, co-authors, co-workers, relatives, etc.
- Financial conflicts may arise when an editor is deriving salary, honorarium, or grants from a company whose product is described in the manuscript.
- In contrast, non-financial conflicts may arise when an editor shows bias in terms of sex, religion, race, citizenship of authors ignoring quality and novelty of the research presented in the manuscript.
- However, editors must reveal personal biases that may influence their editorial decisions.

Editorial Actions
i) IJAaEB editors must contemplate positively all competing interests during the discourse of manuscript processing, thereby ensuring that potential and relevant relevant ones are pronounced in the publication.
ii) Editors will avoid to influence/consult the reviewers for a biased review of an article.
iii) Editors will not consider an article that has previously been declined by the reviewers or editors.

5. Data Sharing and Reproducibility

IJAaEB urges authors to make available all research data presented in their manuscript, since sharing data allows reproducibility of experimental results and their reuse and diminishes duplication. Authors are advised to submit their data in a data repository and furnish a link and citation to the data within the manuscript. Authors may use the digital repository of their own institution/organization.
If research data is available but not shared, please give a plausible reason. If one cannot share data for some specific reasons, please consult the journal editorial office.

6. Ethical Oversight

IJAaEB strictly adheres to the guidelines delineated by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), that “ethical oversight includes, but not limited to, policies on consent to publication, publication on vulnerable populations, ethical conduct of research using animal and human subjects, handling confidential data and ethical business/marketing practices”.
For investigations involving animal and human subjects, formal Institutional Review Board approval is essentially required, and it should be clearly reflected in the manuscript. Particularly, for studies involving human subjects, authors are advised to describe how an informed consent was attained from the participants involved. If a study involves clinical trials, they must have been recorded/registered in clinical trial registries, strictly following the indigenous and international standards.
Patients’ privacy, if indispensable, should not be breached without informed consent; patient data should not be modified or forged. Identifying information should be avoided to include unless the information is necessary for scientific use, and in such cases a written informed consent from the patient or his/her legal guardian be obtained.
IJAaEB is obligated to contemplating appeals on non-adherence to the journal ethical policy by the authors.

7. Intellectual Property
IJAaEB, following the Creative Commons Attribution- 4.0 (CC BY 4.0), allows people to use the articles with a formal acknowledgement of the publication in this journal (see Licensing Policy and Copyright Form appended on the IJAaEB website). Copyright is a legal right that safeguards the original work generated by an author or a group of authors. However, corresponding author of a manuscript is permitted to sign the copyright form on behalf of all co-authors before publication.

8. Plagiarism and Originality

a. Every manuscript submitted to IJAaEB will be checked for plagiarism using appropriate software.
b. Authors must ensure that the work presented in their manuscript is original and has not been published previously, in whole or in part.
c. The journal uses the Turnitin software to detect similarity index and it must be less than 15% in submitted manuscripts.
d. Any sources used in the preparation of the manuscript must be appropriately cited and credited.
e. Plagiarism in any form, including the use of verbatim copying, paraphrasing, or self-plagiarism, is strictly prohibited.

9. Post-Publication Discussions and Corrections

In order to maintain scientific integrity, IJAaEB strictly follows the COPE guidelines while addressing corrections, revisions or retraction of manuscripts after publication.
a. Any post-publication issue can be submitted to the chief editor. Authors are provided an opportunity to promptly respond to all complaints/issues so as to resolve the issue forthwith. Depending on the severity/intensity of the issue following actions can be taken:

i. A corrigendum or an editor’s note may be published in an upcoming issue
ii. The article may be retracted straightforwardly

b. Post-publication corrections are published together with the original manuscript, and all versions are linked to the same DOI.
c. If some serious unethical issues such as academic misconduct/fraud are detected in the investigation, the matter may be formally informed to the author’s parent institution/organization.
d. In addition, IJAaEB also encourages and welcomes to engage authors and readers in constructive discussion on content published in IJAaEB as post-publication discussions in the form of “Commentary” or “Letter to Editor”.
e. The editorial team will moderate such scientific discussions as “Letter to Editor” and “Response to Letter to Editor” with the journal's policies for scholarly exchanges.

10. Peer-Review Policy
International Journal of Applied and Experimental Biology follows the single blind peer-review procedure for all submitted manuscripts. In this type of peer-reviewing, identity of the reviewers is not disclosed to the authors of the submitted manuscript.

a. All submitted articles to International Journal of Applied and Experimental Biology are subject to an extensive peer-review, in consultation with members of the Journal Editors and independent external referees (usually two).
b. If the submitted manuscript is of poor quality in terms of novelty, originality or do not fall in the scope of the Journal, the manuscript will be rejected as Desk Rejected.
c. All manuscripts submitted to International Journal of Applied and Experimental Biology will be processed at OJS/PKP platform. Based on peer-review reports, the journal Editor-in-Chief will take the decision. All the comments/decisions will then be conveyed to the author(s).
d. Submissions (solicited or unsolicited) from the journal Editors will not be more than 10%. In addition, all such types of submissions will undergo independent peer-review and will be submitted to another Editor for his decision on acceptance.
e. Editorial Office will check all submitted manuscripts for similarity index through Turnitin, manuscript formatting, reference style format, and necessary file checking (Figures, Tables, Supplementary data), quality of presented work, and to check whether MS lies within aims and scope of the journal.
f. If Editor-in-Chief/Handling Editor finds the MS of good quality, he will forward to at least two potential reviewers.
g. The reviewers will evaluate all sections of the MS by giving comments and recommendations as “accept as is”, “revisions required”, or “reject”. Reviewers can also upload review report and suggestions on the manuscript directly as annotated file.
h. The manuscript with rejection will be closed, while the manuscript with revision required will require response from authors in another round of review process for re-considering by the Editor.
i. The Production Editor with the help of Handling Editor will process the manuscripts for formatting, copy editing, proofreading, metadata generation for indexing and publication process.

11. Publication Schedule
IJAaEB publishes regularly two issues per volume in a year, first issue in January and the second in July. As the reputation of the journal grows, we intend to publish quarterly basis, i.e., four issues each year.

12. Archiving Policy
Archiving is a digital preservation of the published issues of the journal in a systematic manner.

12.1. Objectives of archiving:

i) Facilitate long-term access to published research articles and associated data.
ii) Safeguard the integrity of scholarly work published in IJAaEB.
iii) Comply with established archiving standards and best practices in the field of academic publishing.
iv) In case of any disaster or calamity of the IJAaEB journal, unrestricted access to archiving platforms enables global readership to retrieve the scientific knowledge.

12.2 Archiving methods:

a) IJAaEB employs multiple archiving methods to ensure the comprehensive preservation of its content.
i) Authors are encouraged to self-archive preprints and post-prints of their articles in institutional repositories or other appropriate platforms such as Authorea, ResearchSquare, ResearchGate, Academia etc.
ii) The Journal will use trusted digital repositories and preservation systems to store published content on long-term basis in a secure and accessible manner using PKP Preservation Network (PN). The Journal also intends to archive journal content on prominent digital libraries or journal archiving databases such as CLOCKSS, DOAJ etc.

All archived content of IJAaEB will also be made openly accessible in accordance with the journal’s open-access policy.

13. Disclosure of Funding Sources

If applicable, full detail of funding sources must be reflected in the Funding Section within the manuscript, mentioning grant number, etc.