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Weekly News Digest

August 23, 2012 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

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Reproducibility Initiative to Increase the Value of Biomedical Research

Science Exchange, in partnership with open access publisher PLOS and open data repository figshare, announced the launch of the Reproducibility Initiative. The new program aims to encourage independent replication of valuable research and thereby help scientists, institutions and funding agencies validate their critical research findings. The Reproducibility Initiative will potentially provide a mechanism for industry to identify robust drug targets for developing effective new therapies. The Reproducibility Initiative is initially accepting 40-50 studies for validation. Validations are conducted blind, on a fee-for-service basis.

“In the last year, problems in reproducing academic research have drawn a lot of public attention, particularly in the context of translating research into medical advances. Recent studies indicate that up to 70% of research from academic labs cannot be reproduced, representing an enormous waste of money and effort,” said Elizabeth Iorns, Science Exchange’s co-founder and CEO. “In my experience as a researcher, I found that the problem lay primarily in the lack of incentives and opportunities for validation—the Reproducibility Initiative directly tackles these missing pieces.”

The Reproducibility Initiative provides both a mechanism for scientists to independently replicate their findings and a reward for doing so. Scientists who apply to have their studies replicated are matched with experimental service providers based on the expertise required. The Initiative leverages Science Exchange’s existing marketplace for scientific services, which contains a network of more than 1,000 expert providers at core facilities and contract research organizations (CROs).

Scientists will receive the results of their validation studies and have the opportunity to publish them in the journal PLOS ONE as part of a Special Collection highlighting the importance of reproducibility in scientific research. They can also upload their primary data to the open access repository figshareReplications published in PLOS ONE will link back to the original publications upon which they are based. Prominent publishers, including Nature Publishing Group and Rockefeller University Press, have expressed their support for this acknowledgment of reproducibility.

Source: Science Exchange



Send correspondence concerning the Weekly News Digest to NewsBreaks Editor Brandi Scardilli

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