Guide to reviewers

About Metallomics Research

Metallomics Research is an international open access journal available online, and publishes work on the roles of metals, metalloids, and other trace elements in biological function.
In order to improve the science and practice of metallomics, manuscripts submitted to Japan Society for Biomedical Research on Trace Elements journals undergo a rigorous but fair peer review process. Through this impartial peer review of manuscripts, the Society aims to provide readers with articles of high quality and interest and so further awareness of life science research on trace elements, and help advance the progress of metallomics research.

Acceptance criteria

If a manuscript satisfies the journal’s requirements and represents a significant contribution to the published literature, the Editor may recommend acceptance for publication in the journal.

Articles in the journal must be:

  • within the subject area of the journal’s scope
  • novel and original
  • descriptions of technically rigorous research
  • of high interest to the journal’s audience
  • important additions to the field.

If a manuscript does not meet the journal’s requirements for acceptance or revision, the Editor may recommend rejection.

Editorial and peer review process

The journal uses double-blind peer review. When a manuscript is submitted to the journal, it is assigned to the Editor-in-Chief, who performs initial screening. Manuscripts that do not fit the journal’s scope or are not deemed suitable for publication are rejected without review. The remaining manuscripts are assigned to a handling Editor who assigns two reviewers to assess each manuscript. Reviewers are selected based on their expertise, reputation and previous experience as peer reviewers.

Upon receipt of the two reviewers’ reports, the Editor makes the first decision of the following:

  • Accept without further modification
  • Accept after minor revision
  • Accept after major revision
  • Reject

If the decision is to request revision of the manuscript, authors have 2 weeks to resubmit their revised manuscript.
The Editor may send revised manuscripts to peer reviewers for their feedback or may use their own judgement to assess how closely the authors have followed the Editor’s and the reviewers’ comments on the original manuscript.
The Editor then makes a recommendation to the Editor-in-Chief on the manuscript’s suitability for publication. The Editor-in-Chief is responsible for making the final decision on each manuscript.

Reviewer selection

Reviewers are selected based on their expertise in the field, reputation, recommendation by others, and/or previous experience as peer reviewers for the journal.
When submitting a manuscript to the journal, authors may suggest reviewers that they would like included in or excluded from the peer review process. The Editor may consider these suggestions but is under no obligation to follow them. The selection, invitation and assignment of peer reviewers is at the Editor’s sole discretion.

Writing the review

The primary purpose of the review is to provide Editorial Board Members with the information needed to reach a decision. It should also instruct the authors on how they can strengthen their manuscript to the point where it may be acceptable for publication.

Reviewers should be mindful that they are assessing the manuscript on technical soundness and scientific validity. This refers to both the methods and analysis: the methods must be appropriate and properly conducted, and the conclusions drawn must be fully supported by the data. The review should consider the following:

  • Suitability of content for the Journal
  • Novelty and originality
  • Validity of experimental methods
  • Quality of writing/language
  • Conclusions supported by experimental results
  • Level of interest
  • Clarity of figures and tables
  • Keyword selection
  • Citation of references

Confidentiality in peer review

The journal maintains the confidentiality of all unpublished manuscripts. Editors and reviewers will not:

  1. disclose a reviewer’s identity unless the reviewer makes a reasonable request for such disclosure
  2. discuss the manuscript or its contents with anyone not directly involved with the manuscript or its peer review
  3. use any data or information from the manuscript in their own work or publications
  4. use information obtained from the peer review process to provide an advantage to themselves or anyone else, or to disadvantage any individual or organization.

In addition, reviewers will not reveal their identity to any of the authors of the manuscript or involve anyone else in the review (for example, a post-doc or PhD student) without first receiving permission from the Editor.


Reviewers are asked to submit their first review within 2 weeks of accepting the invitation to review. Reviewers who anticipate any delays should inform the Editorial Office as soon as possible.

Editing reviewers’ reports

It is the journal’s policy to transmit reviewers’ comments to the authors in their original form. However, the journal reserves the right to edit reviewers’ comments, without consulting the reviewers, if they contain offensive language, confidential information or recommendations for publication.

Editor and reviewer conflicts of interest in peer review

A conflict of interest exists when there are actual, perceived or potential circumstances that could influence an editor or reviewer’s ability to act impartially when assessing a manuscript. Such circumstances might include having a personal or professional relationship with an author, working on the same topic or in direct competition with an author, having a financial stake in the work or its publication, or having seen previous versions of the manuscript.

Reviewers and members of the journal’s Editorial Board undertake to declare any conflicts of interest when handling manuscripts. An editor or reviewer who declares a conflict of interest is unassigned from the manuscript in question and is replaced by a new editor or reviewer.

Editors try to avoid conflicts of interest when inviting reviewers, but it is not always possible to identify potential bias. So, reviewers must draw attention to anything that might affect their review, and to decline invitations to review in cases where they feel unable to be objective.