New journal guidelines on transparency and accuracy of reporting for research studies

The Journal has recently made some alterations to author guidelines which will impact on all manuscripts that are submitted from January 2016. These changes relate to a number of issues (use of supplementary material, word limits for articles) but most significantly include new guidance on the transparent and accurate reporting of research studies.

Transparent and accurate reporting of research studies

The Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics is committed to ensuring full and accurate reporting of research methods to ensure quality and integrity of the research we publish. The journal has a requirement for research manuscripts to conform to specific guidelines. Articles that do not fulfill this requirement will not be considered for publication. From January 2016 all new submissions must include a section entitled ‘Transparency Declaration’. This section should state:

“The lead author affirms that this manuscript is an honest, accurate, and transparent account of the study being reported, that no important aspects of the study have been omitted and that any discrepancies from the study as planned (and registered with…) have been explained. The reporting of this work is compliant with CONSORT1/STROBE2/PRISMA3 guidelines.”

1Randomised controlled trials
We strongly welcome the submission of randomized controlled trials. Articles which are reporting the findings of randomised controlled trials involving human subjects must comply with the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) guidelines. The guidelines can be accessed at http://www.consort-statement.org and authors should include a completed CONSORT checklist and flow diagram with their manuscript submission (the flowchart should be included as a figure within the paper, but the checklist will not be published) and include a statement about compliance with the guidelines within the Transparency Declaration section of the work. Manuscripts must include the term “randomised controlled trial” in their title.

2Observational Studies
Articles which report the findings of observational epidemiological studies (cross-sectional, case-control, cohort studies) must comply with the Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) guidelines. The guidelines can be accessed at http://www.strobe-statement.org and authors should include a completed STROBE checklist with their manuscript submission (this will not be published as part of the paper) and include a statement about compliance with the guidelines within the Transparency Declaration section of the work. Manuscripts should include the study design (e.g. a case-control study) within their title.

3Systematic reviews and meta-analyses
The journal publishes systematic review articles and meta-analyses and endorses the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) Statement, a guideline to help authors report a systematic review and meta-analysis. Systematic review or meta-analysis should follow the PRISMA guidelines (http://prisma-statement.org). Every systematic review/meta-analysis should be submitted along with a copy of the PRISMA checklist, that clearly indicates where in the manuscript each of the PRISMA recommendations are addressed. The PRISMA checklist can be downloaded from http://www.prisma-statement.org/statement.htm. When submitting a systematic review/meta-analysis, the PRISMA checklist can be uploaded included in the covering letter to the editor. Please note, the checklist is a guide for the authors and peer-reviewers, but will not be published. Manuscripts should include the term “systematic review” or “meta-analysis” in their title.

Registration of investigations
JHND strongly encourages authors to register all clinical trials and observational studies in a public trials registry relevant to national organisations. Such registries include ICMJE-approved public trials registries (http://www.clinicaltrials.gov,  http://www.anzctr.org.au/,  http://www.isrctn.orghttp://www.umin.ac.jp,  http://www.trialregister.nl). When submitting a manuscript please report the study ID number and the website where the clinical trial is registered in the manuscript, section Transparency Declaration.

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