Focus and Scope


BioDiscovery is an international, open access, online, peer-reviewed journal for the communication of primary research from any scientific discipline in the field of life sciences and medicine. Main characteristics of the journal are:

  • High quality of published papers, controlled by distinguished world-class researchers. Closed and open peer review systems
  • Rapid publication. Articles are published online immediately after manuscript acceptance
  • No limit in manuscript length. Large reviews and monograph-type papers will be published as special journal issues and assigned ISBN numbers
  • Open access - all published papers can be freely copied, downloaded, printed and distributed at no charge for the reader. Authors retain copyright
  • Worldwide dissemination of the journal content to indexing databases and archiving in open-repositories
  • Possibility for post-publication comments on articles
  • Very competitive publication charges

Annual ‘Most Cited Paper of the Year Award’ comprising of a certificate given at the Annual BioDiscovery Conference, where the corresponding author of the winning paper will be sponsored to participate.


The aim of BioDiscovery is to provide a platform for scientists in all areas of biology and medicine to promote, share and discuss new ideas and developments. 

BioDiscovery considers for publication original, high quality research which contributes significantly for the development of the knowledge in biology and medicine. Articles submitted to BioDiscovery benefit from its broad scope and readership, and dedicated media promotion. We have a rapid turnaround time of 3 weeks from submission to first decision.

Indexed: DOAJ, Sherpa/Romeo, Google Scholar, OpenAIRE, Mendeley


Criteria for Publication

Manuscripts will be accepted for publication in BioDiscovery only if the following criteria are fulfilled:

  • Papers and associated data must be novel and contribute to a better understanding of the topic under scrutiny. Studies that have already been published or submissions that are currently under consideration for publication elsewhere will not be accepted for publication.
  • Previously published information should be considered and cited in compliance with the good academic practice. References should be complete and accurate, where possible including DOIs or links to the article. All figures included in manuscripts should be copyright free and duly acknowledge the original source.
  • All data underpinning an article, including data tables on which graphs are produced, must be published alongside the paper, e.g. as supplementary files, or links to external repositories where data are deposited, and contain sufficient metadata to facilitate data discovery.
  • Manuscripts should be concisely written, in a good academic style, and follow a logical sequence. The voice - active or passive - and the tense used should be consistent throughout the manuscript. Results should be clearly and concisely described and supported by the data published with the article, or data published elsewhere but linked to the article.
  • This journal has well-defined policies for English language editing. Involving mandatory outsourced language editing services would considerably increase the price of the Article Processing Charges, which would become an additional obstacle for persons and institutions to publish in the journal. Therefore we rely both on the conscience of our authors to provide stylistically written texts and our editors and reviewers to filter out badly written manuscripts.
  • Manuscripts must be submitted in English. Authors should confirm the English language quality of their texts or alternatively request thorough linguistic editing prior to peer-review at a price. Manuscripts written in poor English are a subject of rejection prior to peer-review.

Unique Publishing Features

BioDiscovery demonstrates several innovations in both, technological and social aspects of the academic publishing practices. These are some of the features that make this new journal really unique in its field:

  • The journal is published on ARPHA, the first online collaborative platform and workflow ever to support the full life cycle of a manuscript, from writing through submission, peer-review, publication and dissemination.

  • In addition to conventional research articles, BioDiscovery allows publishing research outputs along all stages of the research cycle, such as Clinical Studies, Clinical Trials, Replication Studies, Data Papers, Case Studies, Methods, Review Articles, Reserach Articles and even single media articles.

  • Most structural elements of the published article – text, tables, figures, etc. are treated and stored as DATA.

  • Authors are requested to supply all data underlying given research as supplementary files to allow reproduction of experiments and re-use of data.

  • The journal is using entirely XML-based workflow; typesetting is completely avoided because authoring, publishing and reviewing all occur in the same, entirely Web-based system.

  • The online, collaborative, manuscript-authoring platform ARPHA provides a large set of pre-defined, but flexible, article templates covering all types of outcomes. Within ARPHA, authors may work collaboratively on a manuscript and invite external contributors, such as mentors, potential reviewers, linguistic and copy editors, colleagues, who may correct and comment on the text before submission.

  • A rich set of functionalities of the ARPHA Writing Tool allows for search and import of literature and data references, cross-referencing of in-text citations of literature, tables, images and supplementary material. The tool has an automated technical validation step which will save your time by checking your manuscript for consistency.

  • Authors and reviewers may opt for entirely open review process. Furthermore, authors are given the option to submit reviews or supporting statements from experts in the subject along with their submission (pre-submission reviews) for editor’s consideration to facilitate the manuscript evaluation and speed up the publishing process. All reviews are consolidated into a single online file which makes the process of editing straightforward, easy and pleasant. The journal allows also a post-publication review.

  • Low cost, decoupled and transparent publishing services

What Can I Publish

BioDiscovery considers the following categories of papers for publication:

  • Clinical Studies
  • Clinical Trials
  • Screening Data 
  • Drug Testing
  • Replication Studies
  • Research Articles 
  • Review Articles
  • Opinion Articles
  • Case Studies
  • Data Papers
  • Software Descriptions
  • Data Management Plans
  • Software Management Plans
  • Single-media Publications
  • Methods
  • Project Reports
  • Conference Abstracts
  • Correspondences
  • Research Posters
  • Research Presentations
  • Biographies
  • Book Reviews
  • Corrigenda
  • Editorials
  • Commentaries
  • Short Communications
  • Hypotheses

Open Access Policy

This journal provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge.

Article Charges

Core Charges

Core services included in our Article Processing Charges:

  • Manuscript authoring in the ARPHA Writing Tool
  • Online collaboration with your co-authors and peers during authoring
  • Data import tools for references, figures, tables and supplementary materials
  • Automated technical validation for consistency
  • Technical and editorial checks provided by BioDiscovery
  • Semantic tagging and cross-linking of content
  • Pre-submission peer review, organized by the author (optional)
  • Pre-publication peer review
  • Community-driven post-publication peer review (optional)
  • Automated registration of peer reviews at Publons
  • Publication in semantically enhanced HTML, PDF and JATS XML formats
  • Machine-readable, harvestable content via JATS XML and Web services
  • Publication of a revised version of your article upon request
  • Articles can be easily returned into editing mode and re-published with CrossMark DOI 
  • Archiving in trusted international repositories
  • Active dissemination via social networks and email alerts
  • Extensive article and sub-article usage metrics and citation counts
Article size
(Character count including spaces)

Via ARPHA Writing Tool
(use the Start a Manuscript button)

Via file submission
(use the Submit a Manuscript button)

Small (up to 13,000)€ 199€ 199 + € 50 (conversion fee)
Standard (13,000-65,000)€ 499€ 499 + € 100 (conversion fee)
Large (65,000-130,000)€ 899€ 899 + € 150 (conversion fee)
Above 130,000Ask for a quoteAsk for a quote

Special Issues

Special issues enable conference organizers or project coordinators to publish a number of articles under a common theme and editorship. Depending on the number of articles to be included, Pensoft offers discounts on APCs as described in the table below.





Number of articles

< 10

10 – 20

21 +

Discount on APCs




PR campaign

By agreement

By agreement


Institutional branding

By agreement

By agreement


We are happy to discuss alternative arrangements if there is a better way to suit your needs for a special issue. Please do not hesitate to contact us!

Discounts and Waivers

  • Discount of 10 % is offered to:
    • Scientists working privately
    • Graduate and PhD students if they are first authors
    • Scientists living and working in lower middle-income countries (http://data.worldbank.org/income-level/lower-middle-income) if they are sole authors of a manuscript.
    • Discounts are also offered to our editors and reviewers. 
  • Waivers (once per year per (co-) author for manuscripts no larger than 10 printed pages, or for the first 10 pages of a larger manuscript) are offered to:

Discounts and waivers do not accumulate. 

Promotions, discounts and waivers do not include conversion costs when manuscripts are submitted in a file format.

Additional Services (Optional)

Optional service



Linguistic services

€ 15 per 1800 characters

For texts that require additional editing by a native English speaker

Tailored PR campaign

€ 150*

Press release, dedicated media and social networks promotion

Tailored PR campaign + Video interview

€ 450

Video interview organized by the Editorial Office

Paper reprints

At cost

On demand

*This service can be discounted or waived for articles of outstanding importance for the science and society

Institutional and Other Membership Plans

Our plans provide additional flexibility and affordability for institutions, research groups, consortia, conference organizers and other larger research teams and organizations. Affiliated authors can publish in any Pensoft journal by using a streamlined payment interface. Pensoft’s plans are a great way to support open access publishing, while also simplifying budgeting, invoicing, and author reimbursement procedures. We offer three plans to choose from, however, if they do not quite suit your needs, we would be happy to discuss alternative arrangements with you. Please do not hesitate to contact us for a preliminary conversation about our plans!

Key benefits

Annual membership

  • Flat rate - publish all you can
  • Cost based on the size and publishing pattern of your organization
  • Beginning of year budgeting
  • One invoice / no billing during the year

Pre-paid plans

  • Discount on APCs
  • Deposit funds up-front and spend without a time limit
  • Add funds to your account at any time
  • Choose whether to cover full (discounted) cost of publishing or split costs with authors

Direct billing

  • No up-front payments
  • One monthly invoice for all publications by affiliated authors
  • Regular reports to track publication pattern and expenses

Additional services we can provide upon request

  • PR campaigns for specific publications or sets of publications, including press releases and video interviews
  • Institutional branding – including institutional logos on published papers, dedicated webpages, institutional online collections of articles
  • Research output reporting, detailing number and types of publications, expenses, views, and downloads

Please find more details about each individual plan below. If you would like to recommend Pensoft’s plans to your institution you can fill out this simple form or contact us at info@pensoft.net and we will forward your recommendation with some additional information.

Annual Memberships

Annual memberships allow institutions to plan their publishing expenses in the beginning of the fiscal year by providing unlimited publishing in all Pensoft journals in exchange for a flat annual payment. The cost of membership depends on the total publishing output capacity of the institution and its historical publishing pattern in Pensoft journals. We will adjust the cost of your membership annually.

Pre-Paid Plans

Pre-paid plans allow institutions and / or research groups to deposit a certain amount of funds with Pensoft and make them available to affiliated researchers for covering Article Processing Charges (APCs) in any Pensoft journal. Member institutions decide whether to cover APCs in full or share the expenses with the authors. Depending on the amount members are prepared to commit, Pensoft is offering a discount on APCs per the table below. Additional funds can be added to an account at any point in time within the calendar year of purchasing the plan, while leftover funds are preserved until spent.





Minimum deposit

€ 1,000 – 3,000

€ 3,000 – 5,000

€ 5,000 +

Discount on APCs




Direct Billing

The direct billing plan allows institutions to reduce the complexity of billing and reimbursements. It consolidates all Pensoft invoices for articles authored by researchers affiliated with an institution into a single monthly bill that is sent directly to the institution.

How It Works

Authoring a manuscript in the ARPHA Writing Tool 

How can I decide which article type to choose?

How can I cite references, figures and tables?

Pre-submission technical validation 

Pre-submission, author-facilitated, external peer-review


Authoring a manuscript in the ARPHA Writing Tool 

For manuscripts intended for submission to BioDiscovery, we offer the authors to write in the online collaborative ARPHA Writing Tool. ARPHA provides flexible article templates to be selected in the tool after clicking on the "Start a manuscript" button. ARPHA further provides a rich set of functionalities, which makes the collaborative work of the authors and their peers easy and pleasant. The authoring process in ARPHA is described in fine detail in the Tips and Tricks menu of the writing tool.

Alternatively, manuscripts can be submitted as text (e.g., MS Word, RTF, ODT) files that shall be converted to the ARPHA publishing platform by the BioDiscovery’s Editorial Office. Please note that the conversion comes at a small additional cost, therefore the Article Processing Charges (APC) are higher in case the manuscript is submitted as a text file.

There are NO author guidelines in BioDiscovery with regard to text formatting. The ARPHA Writing Tool will guide you during the authoring and submission process. Please consider Tips and Tricks if you need some assistance or contact helpdesk@pensoft.net. There is only a few simple rules to follow, so please please read carefully the half page of text below before you start your manuscript!

1. How can I decide which article type to choose?

The article templates in ARPHA are created to facilitate the structured publishing of science content and ease discoverability and machine-readability of your work. You can change the article templates, add new sections or subsections or move them within the manuscript. However, we would recommend to use these changes only in case of necessity. There is also free text manuscript template, which may be used for editorials, correspondence, opinion papers, and others.

2. How can I cite references, figures and tables?

  • Please do not insert in-text citations of references, figures or tables manually! The citations will be inserted automatically at the place of your cursor through the "Cite a figure", "Cite a table", "Cite a reference" or "Cite a supplementary material" commands. Once you select the place you want to insert a citation, click on the desired reference, table or figure from the respective list (see next).

  • Before citing a reference, figure, table or supplementary material, you have to upload these, so that they become visible in the respective list of figures, tables or references.

  • Please do not number captions of figures or tables – they will be numbered automatically and can be re-ordered, if needed.

  • All uploaded figures, tables and references must be cited in the text and vice versa.

3. Materials and methods

In line with responsible and reproducible research, as well as FAIR data principles, we highly recommend that authors describe in detail and deposit their science methods and laboratory protocols in the open access repository protocols.io.

Once deposited on protocols.io, protocols and methods will be issued a unique digital object identifier (DOI), which could be then used to link a manuscript to the relevant deposited protocol. By doing this, authors could allow for editors and peers to access the protocol when reviewing the submission to significantly expedite the process.  

Furthermore, an author could open up his/her protocol to the public at the click of a button as soon as their article is published.

Stepwise instructions:

  1. Prepare a detailed protocol via protocols.io.
  2. Click Get DOI to assign a persistent identifier to your protocol.
  3. Add the DOI link to the Methods section of your manuscript prior to submitting it for peer review.
  4. Click Publish to make your protocol openly accessible as soon as your article is published (optional).
  5. Update your protocols anytime.

Pre-submission technical validation 

The ARPHA Writing Tool provides automated technical pre-submission validation steps to save your time by checking your manuscript for consistency.

In addition, a pre-submission technical review is performed for all manuscripts in ARPHA by the Editorial Office against formal checklist criteria such as: technical consistency, language, ethical issues, correspondence to the journal’s criteria for publication, focus, and scope. The BioDiscovery editors can re-iterate the technical evaluation process several times until the manuscript reaches an acceptable level of quality to be submitted to BioDiscovery.

Pre-submission, author-facilitated, external peer-review 

To facilitate and speed up the publication process, authors are expected to source at least one or more external peer-review(s) from specialists in their field, prior to submission, via ARPHA (strongly recommended!) or in another document format such as MS Word (not encouraged!).

Pre-submission reviewers are to be invited via the "Invite a reviewer" button in the ARPHA Writing Tool. The "Invite reviewer" button is visualized in the black riboon on top of the screen only when the manuscript is in status Draft, i.e. prior to its submission for technical review, and it disappears afterward. All pre-submission reviews provided in the ARPHA Writing Tool will be submitted with the manuscript and made public together with the article publication.


Manuscripts for BioDiscovery should be prepared for submission in the ARPHA Writing Tool.

During the submission process, the author(s) should:

  1. Submit at least one pre-submission review, together with the manuscript. The number of pre-submission reviews is not limited and they can be prepared by external reviewers either in the ARPHA Writing Tool, or can be submitted as separate files during the submission process.

  2. Suggest a number of additional referees, who will be automatically invited to review the manuscript.

  3. Answer a couple of other questions about copyright, authorship, ethical issues, and submission fees.



General Statement

The journal policies and guidelines are mandatory. Exceptions to elements of the policies may be granted in specific cases, but will require justification that will be made public together with the article.

License and Copyright Agreement

In submitting the manuscript to the journal, the authors certify that:

  • They are authorized by their co-authors to enter into these arrangements.
  • The work described has not been formally published before (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture, review, thesis, or overlay journal), that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication has been approved by all the author(s) and by the responsible authorities – tacitly or explicitly – of the institutes where the work has been carried out.
  • They secure the right to reproduce any material that has already been published or copyrighted elsewhere.
  • They agree to the following license and copyright agreement:


Licensing for Data Publication

The journal uses the Creative Commons CC-Zero Waiver, for data in any supplementary materials associated with an article.

Other data publishing licenses may be allowed as exceptions (subject to approval by the editor on a case-by-case basis) and should be justified with a written statement from the author, which will be published with the article.

Open Data and Software Publishing and Sharing

The journal strives to maximize the replicability of the research published in it. Authors are thus required to share all data, code or protocols underlying the research reported in their articles. Exceptions are permitted, but have to be justified in a written public statement accompanying the article.

Datasets and software should be deposited and permanently archived in appropriate, trusted, general, or domain-specific repositories (please consult http://service.re3data.org and/or software repositories such as GitHub, GitLab, Bioinformatics.org, or equivalent). The associated persistent identifiers (e.g. DOI, or others) of the dataset(s) must be included in the data or software resources section of the article. Reference(s) to datasets and software should also be included in the reference list of the article with DOIs (where available). Where no domain-specific data repository exists, authors should dGiteposit their datasets in a general repository such as ZENODO,Dryad, Dataverse, or others.

Small data may also be published as data files or packages supplementary to a research article, however, the authors should prefer in all cases a deposition in data repositories.

Privacy Statement

The names and email addresses present on the journal’s website will be used exclusively for the purposes of the journal.

Author Policies

It is a responsibility of the corresponding author that all named authors have agreed to its submission.

The Corresponding Author’s Role and Responsibilities are to:

  1. Inform all co-authors of the submission of the manuscript to the journal (note: each co-author will receive a confirmation email upon submission and will need to confirm their authorship).
  2. Manage all correspondence between the journal and all co-authors, keeping the full co-author group apprised of the manuscript progress.
  3. Designate a substitute correspondent for times of unavailability.
  4. Ensure payment of the publication charges at the point of Editorial Acceptance, or before that in case some specific services have been purchased (e.g., conversion to ARPHA or linguistic editing).
  5. Ensure that the manuscript is in full adherence with all the journal policies (including such items as publication ethics, data deposition, materials deposition, etc).
  6. Post Publication: Respond to all queries pertaining to the published manuscript, provide data and materials as requested.
  7. The submission must be created (and completed) by one of the co-authors, not by an agency, or by some other individual who is not one of the co-authors.

The journal adheres to the ICMJE uniform requirements of authorship: All authors on an article must meet these requirements, which are extracted below:

  • "Authorship credit should be based on 1) substantial contributions to conception and design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data; 2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and 3) final approval of the version to be published. Authors should meet conditions 1, 2, and 3.
  • When a large, multicenter group has conducted the work, the group should identify the individuals who accept direct responsibility for the manuscript (3). These individuals should fully meet the criteria for authorship/contributorship defined above, and editors will ask these individuals to complete journal-specific author and conflict-of-interest disclosure forms. When submitting a manuscript authored by a group, the corresponding author should clearly indicate the preferred citation and identify all individual authors as well as the group name. Journals generally list other members of the group in the Acknowledgments. The National Library of Medicine indexes the group name and the names of individuals the group has identified as being directly responsible for the manuscript; it also lists the names of collaborators, if they are listed in Acknowledgments.
  • Acquisition of funding, collection of data, or general supervision of the research group alone does not constitute authorship.
  • All persons designated as authors should qualify for authorship, and all those who qualify should be listed.
  • Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content.

Commenting Policies

All public comments follow the normal standards of professional discourse. All commenters are named, and their comments are associated to the journal profile. The journal does not allow anonymous or pseudonymous commenting or user profiles.

The journal does not tolerate language that is insulting, inflammatory, obscene or libelous. The journal reserves the right to remove all or parts of Comments to bring them in line with these policies. The journal is the final arbiter as to the suitability of any comments.

Conflicts of Interest

The journal requires that all parties involved in a publication (i.e. the authors, reviewers and academic editors) should transparently declare any potential Conflicts of Interest (also known as Competing Interests). The disclosure of a Conflict of Interest does not necessarily mean that there is an issue to be addressed; it simply ensures that all parties are appropriately informed of any relevant considerations while they work on the submission.

Potential Conflicts of Interest should be declared even if the individual in question feels that these interests do not represent an actual conflict. Examples of Conflicts of Interest include, but are not limited to: possible financial benefits if the manuscript is published; patent activity on the results; consultancy activity around the results; personal material or financial gain (such as free travel, gifts, etc.) relating to the work, and so on.

While possible financial benefits should appear here, actual funding sources (institutional, corporate, grants, etc.) should be detailed in the funding disclosure statement.

Funding Disclosure

The journal requires that authors declare the funding which made their work possible, including funding programmes, projects, or calls for grant proposals (when applicable).

Ethics and Security Statement

BioDiscovery complies with the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors’ uniform requirements for manuscripts.

Authors provide an Ethics and Security statement detailing the relevant ethical standards that were met when conducting the research. Ethics and Security statements are required whenever research is conducted on humans or human tissue; on animals or animal tissue; when conducting field studies; or whenever the approval of an Institutional Review Board (IRB) was required.

Reporting of research involving humans or animals

Appropriate approval, licensing or registration should be obtained before the research begins and details should be provided in the report (e.g. Institutional Review Board, Research Ethics Committee approval, national licensing authorities for the use of animals).
The authors must:

  • confirm that experiments with humans and animals reported in the original research manuscript were performed according to the relevant regulations. If requested by editors, authors should supply evidence that reported research received the appropriate approval and was carried out ethically (e.g. copies of approvals, licences, participant consent forms);
  • include a statement in the manuscript identifying the institutional and/or licensing committee approving the experiments.
  • for experiments involving human subjects, authors must also include with their submission a statement confirming that informed consent was obtained from all subjects. Researchers should not generally publish or share identifiable individual data collected in the course of research without specific consent from the individual (or their representative).
  • where IRB approval was required, the authors must provide an ethics statement as part of their Materials and Methods section detailing full information regarding their approval (including the name of the granting organization, and the approval reference numbers). If an approval reference number is not provided, written approval must be provided as confidential supplemental file.

The appropriate statistical analyses should be determined at the start of the study and a data analysis plan for the pre-specified outcomes should be prepared and followed. Secondary or post hoc analyses should be distinguished from primary analyses and those set out in the data analysis plan. Researchers should publish all meaningful research results that might contribute to understanding.

Authors should supply research protocols to journal editors if requested (e.g. for clinical trials) so that reviewers and editors can compare the research report to the protocol to check that it was carried out as planned and that no relevant details have been omitted. Researchers should follow relevant requirements for clinical trial registration and should include the trial registration number in all publications arising from the trial.

For reports on clinical trials requirements include:

  • Registration of all interventional trials, whether early or late phase, in a primary register that participates in WHO’s International Clinical Trial Registry Platform.
  • Full public disclosure of the minimum 20-item trial registration dataset at the time of registration and before recruitment of the first participant is encouraged. The registry must be independent of for-profit interest.
  • Reports of trials must conform to CONSORT 2010 guidelines and should be submitted with their protocols.
  • All reports of randomised trials should include a section entitled Randomisation and masking, within the Methods section.
  • Cluster-randomised trials must be reported according to CONSORT extended guidelines.
  • Randomised trials that report harms must be described according to extended CONSORT guidelines.
  • Studies of diagnostic accuracy must be reported according to STARD guidelines.
  • Observational studies (cohort, case-control, or cross-sectional designs) must be reported according to the STROBE statement, and should be submitted with their protocols.
  • Registration of all observational studies on a WHO-compliant registry is encouraged.
  • Genetic association studies must be reported according to STREGA guidelines.
  • Systematic reviews and meta-analyses must be reported according to PRISMA guidelines.

'Dual Use Research of Concern' is defined by the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB) as any "biological research with legitimate scientific purpose that may be misused to pose a biologic threat to public health and/or national security."

If an author, editor or reviewer feels that a submission may be subject to concerns surrounding dual use, then it is incumbent on them to report this concern to staff.

Publication Ethics and Malpractice Statement


Manuscripts submitted to the journal must be original work and is not currently being considered for publication by another journal.

The publishing ethics and malpractice policies of the journal follow the relevant COPE guidelines (http://publicationethics.org/resources/guidelines), and in case a malpractice is suspected, the journal Editors will act in accordance with them.


Research misconduct may include: (a) manipulating research materials, equipment, or processes, (b) changing or omitting data or results such that the research is not accurately represented in the article.

A special case of misconduct is plagiarism, which is the appropriation of another person's ideas, processes, results, or words without giving appropriate credit.

Research misconduct does not include honest error or differences of opinion.

If misconduct is suspected, journal Editors will act in accordance with the relevant COPE guidelines: http://publicationethics.org/resources/guidelines.

Should a comment on potential misconduct be submitted by the Reviewers or Editors, an explanation will be sought from the Authors. If this is satisfactory, and a mistake or misunderstanding has taken place, the matter can be resolved. If not, the manuscript will be rejected, and the Editors will impose a ban on that individual's publication in the journal for a period of three years.

In cases of published plagiarism or dual publication, an announcement will be made in the journal, explaining the situation.


Appeals and Open Debate

We encourage academic debate and constructive criticism. Authors do not have a right to neglect unfavourable comments about their work and to choose not to respond to criticisms.

No Reviewer’s comment or published correspondence may contain a personal attack on any of the Authors. Criticism of the work is encouraged, and Editors should edit (or reject) personal or offensive statements.

The Author(s) should submit their appeal on editorial decisions to the Editorial Office.

BioDiscovery encourages publication of open opinions, forum papers, corrigenda, critical comments on a published paper and Author’s response to criticism.


BioDiscovery Journal reserves the right to retract articles that are found to be fraudulent or in breach of the journal’s policies.

Retraction policies

Article retraction

According to the COPE Retraction Guidelines followed by this Journal, an article can be retracted because of the following reasons:

• unreliable findings based on clear evidence of a misconduct (e.g. fraudulent use of the data) or honest error (e.g. miscalculation or experimental error);

• redundant publication, e.g., findings that have previously been published elsewhere without proper cross-referencing, permission or justification;

• plagiarism or other kind of unethical research.

Retraction procedure

  • Retraction should happen after a careful consideration by the Journal editors, on a request by the editors, author(s), or community advice.

  • The HTML version of the retracted article is removed (except for the article metadata) and on its place a retraction note is issued.

  • The PDF of the retracted article is left on the website but clearly watermarked with the note "Retracted" on each page.

  • In some rare cases (e.g., for legal reasons or health risk) the retracted article can be replaced with a new corrected version containing apparent link to the retracted original version and a retraction note with a history of the document.

Expression of concern

In other cases, the Journal editors should consider issuing an expression of concern, if evidence is available for:

• inconclusive evidence of research or publication misconduct by the authors;

• unreliable findings that are unreliable but the authors’ institution will not investigate the case;

• a belief that an investigation into alleged misconduct related to the publication either has not been, or would not be, fair and impartial or conclusive;

• an investigation is underway but a judgement will not be available for a considerable time.


Journal editors should consider issuing a correction if:

  • a small portion of an otherwise reliable publication proves to be misleading (especially because of honest error);

  • the author / contributor list is incorrect (i.e. a deserving author has been omitted or somebody who does not meet authorship criteria has been included);

  • other reasons that do not qualify as a sound evidence for retraction or expression of concern.

Terms of Use

This document describes the Terms of Use of the services provided by the BioDiscovery journal, hereinafter referred to as "the Journal" or "this Journal". All Users agree to these Terms of Use when signing up to this Journal. Signed Journal Users will be hereinafter referred to as "User" or "Users".

The publication services to the Journal are provided by Pensoft Publishers Ltd., through its publishing platform ARPHA, hereinafter referred to as "the Provider".

The Provider reserves the right to update the Terms of Use occasionally. Users will be notified via posting on the site and/or by email. If using the services of the Journal after such notice, the User will be deemed to have accepted the proposed modifications. If the User disagrees with the modifications, he/she should stop using the Journal services. Users are advised to periodically check the Terms of Use for updates or revisions. Violation of any of the terms will result in the termination of the User's account. The Provider is not responsible for any content posted by the User in the Journal.

Account Terms

  1. For registration in this Journal or any of the services or tools hosted on it, Users must provide their full legal name, a valid email address, postal address, affiliation (if any),  and any other information requested.
  2. Accounts created via this journal automatically sign in the User to the ARPHA Platform.
  3. Users are responsible for maintaining the security of their account and password. The Journal cannot and will not be liable for any loss or damage from failure to comply with this security obligation.
  4. Users are solely responsible for the content posted via the Journal services (including, but not limited to data, text, files, information, usernames, images, graphics, photos, profiles, audio and video clips, sounds, applications, links and other content) and all activities that occur under their account.
  5. Users may not use the service for any illegal or unauthorised purpose. Users must not, in the use of the service, violate any laws within their jurisdiction (including but not limited to copyright or trademark laws).
  6. Users can change or pseudonomyse their personal data, or deactivate their accounts at any time through the functionality available in the User’s personal profile. Deactivation or pseudonomysation will not affect the appearance of personal data in association with an already published work of which the User is author, co-author, editor, or reviewer.
  7. Users can report to the Journal uses of their personal data, that they might consider not corresponding to the current Terms of Use.
  8. The User’s personal data is processed by the Journal on the legal basis corresponding to Article 6, paragraph 1, letters a, b, c and f. of the General Data Protection Regulation (hereinafter referred to as GDPR) and will be used for the purpose of Journal’s services in accordance with the present Terms and Use, as well as in those cases expressly stated by the legislation.
  9. User’s consent to use the information the Journal has collected about the User corresponds to Article 6(1)(a) of the GDPR.
  10. The ‘legitimate interest’ of the Journal to engage with the User and enable him/her to participate in Journal’s activities and use Journal’s services correspond to Article 6(1)(f) of the GDPR.

Services and Prices

The Provider reserves the right to modify or discontinue, temporarily or permanently, the services provided by the Journal. Plans and prices are subject to change upon 30 days notice from the Provider. Such notice may be provided at any time by posting the changes to the relevant service website.


The Authors retain full ownership to their content published in the Journal. We claim no intellectual property rights over the material provided by any User in this Journal. However, by setting pages to be viewed publicly (Open Access), the User agrees to allow others to view and download the relevant content. In addition, Open Access articles might be used by the Provider, or any other third party, for data mining purposes.

The Provider reserves the rights in its sole discretion to refuse or remove any content that is available via the Website.

Copyrighted Materials

Unless stated otherwise, the Journal website may contain some copyrighted material (for example, logos and other proprietary information, including, without limitation, text, software, photos, video, graphics, music and sound - "Copyrighted Material"). The User may not copy, modify, alter, publish, transmit, distribute, display, participate in the transfer or sale, create derivative works or, in any way, exploit any of the Copyrighted Material, in whole or in part, without written permission from the copyright owner. Users will be solely liable for any damage resulting from any infringement of copyrights, proprietary rights or any other harm resulting from such a submission.

Exceptions from this rule are e-chapters or e-articles published under Open Access (see below), which are normally published under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license (CC-BY), or Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (CC-BY), or Creative Commons Public Domain license (CC0).

Open Access Materials

This Journal is a supporter of open science. Open access to content is clearly marked, with text and/or the open access logo, on all materials published under this model. Unless otherwise stated, open access content is published in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 licence (CC-BY). This particular licence allows the copying, displaying and distribution of the content at no charge, provided that the author and source are credited.

Privacy Statement

  1. Users agree to submit their personal data to this Journal, hosted on the ARPHA Platform provided by Pensoft.
  2. The Journal collects personal information from Users (e.g., name, postal and email addresses, affiliation) only for the purpose of its services.
  3. All personal data will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of the website and will not be made available for any other purpose or to third parties.
  4. In the case of co-authorship of a work published through the Journal services, each of the co-authors states that they agree that their personal data be collected, stored and used by the Journal.
  5. In the case of co-authorship, each of the co-authors agrees that their personal data publicly available in the form of a co-authorship of a published work, can be distributed to external indexing services and aggregators for the purpose of the widest possible distribution of the work they co-author.
  6. When one of the co-authors is not registered in the Journal, it is presumed that the corresponding author who is registered has requested and obtained his/her consent that his/her personal data will be collected, stored and used by the Journal.
  7. The registered co-author undertakes to provide an e-mail address of the unregistered author, to whom the Journal will send a message in order to give the unregistered co-author’s explicit consent for the processing of his/her personal data by the Journal.
  8. The Journal is not responsible if the provided e-mail of the unregistered co-author is inaccurate or invalid. In such cases, it is assumed that the processing of the personal data of the unregistered co-author is done on a legal basis and with a given consent.
  9. The Journal undertakes to collect, store and use the provided personal data of third parties (including but not limited to unregistered co-authors) solely for the purposes of the website, as well as in those cases expressly stated by the legislation.
  10. Users can receive emails from Journal and its hosting platform ARPHA, provided by Pensoft, about activities they have given their consent for. Examples of such activities are:
    • Email notifications to authors, reviewers and editors who are engaged with authoring, reviewing or editing a manuscript submitted to the Journal.
    • Email alerts sent via email subscription service, which can happen only if the User has willingly subscribed for such a service. Unsubscription from the service can happen through a one-click link provided in each email alert notification.
    • Information emails on important changes in the system or in its Terms of Use which are sent via Mailchimp are provided with "Unsubscribe" function.
  11. Registered users can be invited to provide a peer review on manuscripts submitted to the Journal. In such cases, the users can decline the review invitation through a link available on the journal’s website.
  12. Each provided peer review can be registered with external services (such as Publons). The reviewer will be notified if such registration is going to occur and can decline the registration process.
  13. In case the Journal starts using personal data for purposes other than those specified in the Terms of Use, the Journal undertakes to immediately inform the person and request his/her consent.
  14. If the person does not give his/her consent to the processing of his or her personal data pursuant to the preceding paragraph, the Journal shall cease the processing of the personal data for the purposes for which there is no consent, unless there is another legal basis for the processing.
  15. Users can change/correct their personal data anytime via the functionality available in the User’s profile. Users can request the Journal to correct their personal data if the data is inaccurate or outdated and the Journal is obliged to correct the inaccurate or outdated personal data in a timely manner.
  16. Users may request the Journal to restrict the use of their personal data insofar as this limitation is not contrary to the law or the Terms of Use.
  17. Users may request their personal data to be deleted (the right to be forgotten) by the Journal, provided that the deletion does not conflict with the law or the Terms of Use.
  18. The User has the right to be informed:
    • whether his or her personal data have been processed;
    • for which purposes the Journal processes the personal data;
    • the ways in which his/her personal data are processed;
    • the types of personal data that Journal processes.
  19. The user undertakes not to interfere with and impede the Journal’s activities in the exercise of the provided rights.
  20. In case of non-fulfilment under the previous paragraph, the Journal reserves the right to delete the user's profile.

Disclaimer of Warranty and Limitation of Liability

Neither Pensoft and its affiliates nor any of their respective employees, agents, third party content providers or licensors warrant that the Journal service will be uninterrupted or error-free; nor do they give any warranty as to the results that may be obtained from use of the journal, or as to the accuracy or reliability of any information, service or merchandise provided through Journal.

Legal, medical, and health-related information located, identified or obtained through the use of the Service, is provided for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for qualified advice from a professional.

In no event will the Provider, or any person or entity involved in creating, producing or distributing Journal or the contents included therein, be liable in contract, in tort (including for its own negligence) or under any other legal theory (including strict liability) for any damages, including, but without limitation to, direct, indirect, incidental, special, punitive, consequential or similar damages, including, but without limitation to, lost profits or revenues, loss of use or similar economic loss, arising from the use of or inability to use the journal platform. The User hereby acknowledges that the provisions of this section will apply to all use of the content on Journal. Applicable law may not allow the limitation or exclusion of liability or incidental or consequential damages, so the above limitation or exclusion may not apply to the User. In no event will Pensoft’s total liability to the User for all damages, losses or causes of action, whether in contract, tort (including own negligence) or under any other legal theory (including strict liability), exceed the amount paid by the User, if any, for accessing Journal.

Third Party Content

The Provider is solely a distributor (and not a publisher) of SOME of the content supplied by third parties and Users of the Journal. Any opinions, advice, statements, services, offers, or other information or content expressed or made available by third parties, including information providers and Users, are those of the respective author(s) or distributor(s) and not of the Provider.

CLOCKSS system has permission to ingest, preserve, and serve this Archival Unit.

Benefits for Editors and Reviewers

Pensoft editors and reviewers are entitled to a set of benefits in appreciation for their contribution to the quality of the works we publish.

  For Editors   For Reviewers
  • 15% unconditional discount on APCs and reprints for the journal in which you are an editor
  • 10% unconditional discount on
    • APCs in all other Pensoft journals
    • All books published by Pensoft
    • Article reprints for all other Pensoft journals
    • Dedicated PR campaigns
  • Special conditions for publication of large works or articles that need customized technical solutions
  • 15% discount on APCs for the journal in which the review was provided
    • Valid for one manuscript per review, submitted within 6 months of the review, where the reviewer is the lead author
  • Automated registration of reviews at Publons after confirmation by the reviewer
  • Open reviews are provided with DOIs and citation details

* When an individual qualifies for multiple discounts Pensoft will use the largest that applies

  Apply to become an editor via Editor Application Form

Writing a Press Release

Pensoft’s experienced PR team puts a lot of effort in the wide dissemination of the works we publish through press releases, news aggregators, blogs, social network communication and the mass media.

It goes without saying that press releases and news stories can have a major effect on the impact and popularity of research findings. Moreover, they are of benefit to all parties involved: the authors, their institutions, funding agencies, publishers and the society in general. Thanks to a well-established dissemination network, Pensoft press releases regularly provide the basis for print, online, radio and TV news stories in reputed international media outlets, including National Geographic, BBC, Sky News, CNN, New York Times, The Guardian, Deutsche Welle, Der Standard, DR, etc.

Here are some examples of Pensoft's press releases, posted on EurekAlert, which have enjoyed high popularity and thousands of views within the first days following their publication:

Our PR team invites you to prepare (or request) a short press release on your accepted paper whenever you find your research of public interest. We have provided a template and instructions to guide you through the specific text format.

While the press release needs to be in English, in case you find it suitable for the promotion of your study, you are welcome to also submit a translation of the press release in the following languages: French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese and Chinese. Please note that all translations need to be based on the final English version of the press release as approved by our press officers.

We are always happy to promote your research by preparing a press release for you and coordinating our dedicated PR campaigns with the PR offices of our partnering institutions. You are welcome to approach us with your press release drafts or any queries regarding our PR campaign via email at either pressoffice@pensoft.net, or dissemination@pensoft.net.

To keep up with the latest news, subscribe to our blog and follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Also, keep an eye on EurekAlert! AAAS for our top breaking stories!

For the Tailored PR Campaign’s rates, please see Article Charges (Additional Services).

About Pensoft

History & Overview

Pensoft is an independent academic publishing company, well known among biodiversity scientists worldwide for technologically cutting-edge open access journals, such as: ZooKeys, Biodiversity Data Journal (BDJ)PhytoKeys, MycoKeys, Nature Conservation,NeoBiota, and Comparative Cytogenetics. Founded in 1992 in Bulgaria, "by academics, for academics", initially focusing on book publishing, it has grown to become an innovative and leading open access journal publisher. Pensoft has published more than 1000 books and over 4,000 open access articles, mostly in the field of natural history.


In 2010, Pensoft was the first publisher to implement semantic tagging and enrichment of published articles as a routine editorial practice. The company is actively developing novel tools, workflows and methods for text and data publishing, dissemination of scientific information, and technologies for semantic enrichment of content. In 2013, Pensoft launched the first ever end-to-end XML-based authoring, reviewing and publishing workflow, as demonstrated by the Pensoft Writing Tool (PWT) and the Biodiversity Data Journal (BDJ). The company has also developed several tools for semantic publishing, such as the Pensoft Markup Tool (PMT), Pensoft Taxon Profile (PTP), Pensoft Wiki Converter (PWC), the literature and data discovery tool Refindit.org, and others.

Pensoft is a member or partner of:  CrossRef, OASPA, CLOCKSS, Research Data Alliance (RDA), OpenAIRE, Dryad Data Repository, GBIF, Encyclopedia of Life, and others.

Pensoft journal content is indexed by:  PubMedCentral, ISI Web of Science, Scopus, BIOSIS, Google Scholar, DOAJ, Zoological Record,CAB AbstractsWikispeciesVifabioBHL CitebankGlobalnamesJournalMap.