Ethical Guidelines and Regulations

  • Article 1 (Purpose)
    These ethical regulations are aimed to protect research integrity by setting forth the ethics-related matters regarding the findings that will be published in the "Molecules and Cells", the official journal of the Korean Society for Molecular and Cellular Biology.
  • Article 2 (Definition of terms)
    • Research frauds refer to forgeries, falsifications, plagiarisms, dual publications, improper inclusion or exclusion of authors, etc, as seen in the proposals, performances, result reports, presentations, etc. of the research. Their details are as follows:
      1. 1) Forgery: Refers to the act of forging non-existent data or findings.
      2. 2) Falsification: Refers to the act of distorting research contents or results by fabricating, transforming, deleting or adding the data willfully.
      3. 3) Plagiarism: Refers to the act of representing others' work as one's own. Included is the cases of self-plagiarism of using identical ideas or data in subsequent publications.
      4. 4) Dual publications: Refers to publishing identical research contents in different academic journals twice or more.
      5. 5) Improper inclusion or exclusion of authors: Refers to not qualifying, without reasonable reason, a person who has contributed to research contents or results in scientific or technical terms for authorship, or to qualifying a person who has not contributed to them in scientific or technical terms for authorship.
      6. 6) Act of proposing, forcing or threatening another person to commit fraudulent acts.
      7. 7) Other acts that seriously out of line with the scope normally acceptable in academic research.
    • "The informant" refers to a person who recognizes and reports any research fraud to the Society .
    • "The examinee" refers to a person who is under investigation for research fraud according to the report of an informant or the cognizance of the Society or a person who has been found during an investigation to have potentially participated in research frauds. A reference or witness during examination shall not be called an examinee.
    • "Examination" refers to a procedure to determine whether the Society needs to examine the suspicion of research fraud officially and to verify whether the suspicion of research fraud is true or not.
    • "Judgement" refers to a procedure of making decision based on evaluation of evidences and informing the decision to an informant and/or examinee.
  • Article 3 (Ethical requirements for authors)
    • (Author's responsibilities) Each author shall precisely provide and be responsible for only the results of the research he or she has actually carried out. The corresponding author shall represent all authors in answering for data accuracy, evaluating exact contribution of each author, certifying approval of all authors for the submitted draft and handling all correspondences and questions.
    • (Management of data and findings) Data shall be collected and recorded in reliable, valid and appropriate ways, kept for a certain period of time to be available if necessary.
    • (Sequence of authors) Authors shall be arranged in order according to the extent of their contribution to research under mutual consent.
    • (Prohibition of dual publications) No author may attempt at the multiple publication of his or her study (including that planned to publish or under examination). When wanting to publish his or her study using another one already published in another academic journal, he or she shall offer the information on the previous publication to the editors of Mol.Cells and shall follow the editor's judgment of whether the act is double publication.
    • (Prohibition of plagiarism) Plagiarism of any kind is strictly prohibited.
    • (Author's revision of manuscript) Authors shall accommodate opinions of editors and reviewers as much as possible, and when dissenting from the opinions, he or she shall offer the grounds and reasons to editors and reviewers.
  • Article 4 (Ethical requirements for editors)
    • Editors shall be responsible for deciding whether to publish a contributed manuscript, ensure the truthfulness and fairness of judgment, and respect authors' integrity and independence as a scholar.
    • Editors shall entrust the judgment of the manuscript to objective and fair reviewers with expertise in the field. Reviewers with conflicts of interest shall be excluded
    • Contents and authorship of all submitted manuscripts will be kept from public access until the final decision is made. In addition, identity of the editors and reviewers will not be released during or after the evaluation of a given manuscript.
  • Article 5 (Ethical requirements for reviewers)
    • Within a period specified by the editors, reviewers shall carefully evaluate the manuscripts which editors have entrusted and inform review results to the editors. If a reviewer considers him- or herself to be unqualified for evaluation, he or she shall so inform editors immediately.
    • Each reviewer shall evaluate every manuscript objectively and fairly in accordance with strict standards in terms of the quality, significance and interpretation of study. He or she may not exclude any manuscript from publication without specifying sufficient ground.
      1. 1) Reviewers shall respect the integrity and independence of authors and not use any expression that can be deemed insulting.
      2. 2) Reviewers may not entrust reviewing to any third party including members of their institute or laboratory.
      3. 3) Reviewers may not keep and utilize any part of the manuscript for personal uses.
    • The review process will remain a secret. The reviewer may not use or disclose the contents of the manuscript without consent of the authors prior to publication. The reviewer shall not release the names of the editor and reviewer to authors or to a third party.
  • Article 6 (Enforcement of ethical regulations)
    • The Ethics Committee shall include editors of Mol. Cells, and the chairman shall be recommended by the Board of Directors and confirmed by the Board of Representatives in accordance with the Clause 4, Article 21 of the Society's by-laws. The committee members other than the journal editors shall be appointed by the Society president upon recommendation of the chairman.
    • The Ethics Committee shall carefully examine the case of ethical violation by all means deemed necessary and recommend Society president to take appropriate disciplinary.
    • Any member who has been reported for violating ethical regulations shall cooperate with the investigation by the Ethics Committee. The non-cooperation with the examination may be considered to be admission of the ethical violation.
    • Any member reported for ethical violations shall be given the opportunities to defend himself or herself.
    • The Ethics Committee may not disclose the identity of any member in question until a final decision is made by the Society on the violation of ethical regulations.
    • When recommended to take disciplinary measures by the Ethics Committee, Society president shall make a decision on the disciplinary details which is to be approved by the Board of Directors.
    • The outcome of ethics investigations on research fraud shall be reported to the Society general meeting, and the records involved shall be maintained at the Society for five years from the time point when the disciplinary procedure has been completed. If the research fraud turns out to be true, it shall be announced to the Society and the exact measures to be taken, which may include some or all of the actions listed below, shall be determined by the Board of Directors.
      1. 1) Notifying the researcher under investigation and his or her institute of the Society's official conclusion and demanding appropriate disciplinary measures;
      2. 2) Announcing the official conclusion of the investigation in the first subsequent issue of Mol. Cells.
      3. 3) Announcing withdrawal, cancellation, etc. of the article deemed to contain ethical violations or research frauds.
      4. 4) Suspension or disqualification of Society membership for an appropriate duration.
      5. 5) Prohibition of the article contribution to Mol. Cells for a specified period;
      6. 6) Report to funding institutions or legal authorities if necessary;
      7. 7) Other measures judged to be necessary by the Society.
    • If it is confirmed that no research fraud was committed, the Committee shall take appropriate measures to restore the honor of the researcher accused of ethical violations.
    • The revision of ethical regulations shall follow the rules amendment procedures of the Society. If ethical regulations are revised, each member shall be considered to have pledged to obey new regulations without individual confirmation.
    *Mol. Cells follows the international standards for editors and authors press release,
Mol. Cells
May 31, 2022 Vol.45 No.5, pp. 273~352
Fe2+ ion depletion-induced expression of BΔGFP at the early stage of leaf development (Choi et al., pp. 294-305).

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