PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases is dedicated to research that addresses the neglected, the forgotten, and the under-resourced, in order to improve the health and prosperity of all the world’s people. We work alongside researchers spanning every continent who are deeply rooted in under-resourced communities. We amplify their voices through Open Access and Open Science practices to make this knowledge accessible and inspire greater change far beyond immediate borders.
PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases publishes research devoted to the pathology, epidemiology, prevention, treatment and control of the neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), as well as relevant public health and policy.
We define NTDs as poverty-promoting infectious diseases that primarily occur in rural areas and poor urban areas of low-income and middle-income countries, but can also affect specific communities within high-income countries. Their impact on child health and development, pregnancy, and worker productivity, as well as their stigmatizing features, prevent equity and economic stability.
The journal focuses on human disease, human health, translational, clinical, and epidemiological studies, including informative case reports. Case reports will only be considered based on novelty, or an unexpected or uncommon manifestation of a disease. Below is a non-exhaustive list of topics we are currently interested in. We are open to conversations with our communities about scope adjustments that reflect their changing needs.
All aspects of these diseases are considered, including:
- Clinical features
- Drug administration and treatment
- Vector biology
- Vaccinology and prevention
- Demographic, ecological and social determinants
- Public health and policy aspects (including cost-effectiveness analyses)
Major NTDs within scope
|Protozoan Infections (and their vectors)||
|Helminth Infections (and their vectors)||
All human helminth infections including but not restricted to:
|Viral Infections (and their vectors)||
|Bacterial Infections (and their vectors)||
Scabies, Myiasis, and other ectoparasites
Articles relating to envenomations by any of the venomous animals will be reviewed for publication, especially those that deal with epidemiological, clinical, therapeutic, social science or public policy studies in resource-poor locations.
One Health approaches and Policy
The journal considers any papers that examine the aforementioned NTDs or NTD related policy from a One Health approach, to ensure the well-being of vulnerable people and neglected populations. For more information on what constitutes a One Health approach, please visit the CDC and WHO guidelines.
Related topics with restricted scope
Papers that examine the link between nutrition and NTD infection are considered for PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases; however, purely nutritional studies are not in the scope of the journal.
We will not consider submissions on:
- The “big three” diseases, HIV/AIDS, malaria (Falciparum), and tuberculosis
- Hepatitis A, B or D
- Lyme disease
- Head lice
- Mental health, psychiatry, psychology
- Research that is based in or primarily affects high income countries, unless the study would also have consequences in LMIC
- Purely veterinary/agricultural-focused studies with no impact on human health
Fundamental microbial pathogenesis
Research on fundamental microbial pathogenesis and the molecular and cellular biology of the NTDs pathogens should be submitted to PLOS Pathogens. Examples: fundamental mechanisms of immune evasion by Plasmodium, blocking of apoptosis by Salmonella, population biology of Candida, or latency in herpes viruses. Research on molecular pathways as potential drug or vaccine targets would be suitable for PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases.
Other infectious diseases will also be considered on a case-by-case basis. Authors must indicate in the cover letter why they consider the infection to be a neglected tropical disease. If a paper is determined to not be in scope, the paper will be returned to the authors indicating the reasoning.
Research articles consider all aspects of the NTDs, including their pathogenesis, clinical features, pharmacology and treatment, diagnosis, epidemiology, vector biology, and vaccinology and prevention. Demographic, ecological and social determinants, public health, and policy aspects of these diseases (including cost-effectiveness analyses) are also a priority.
The Editorial is written by the Editor-in-Chief or a member of the Editorial Board.
The Viewpoints section contains opinion pieces grounded in evidence on topics of broad interest to the journal's readership.
The Policy Platform is for authors to discuss policies that could improve the lives of those at risk of, or affected by, the NTDs.
The Reviews section is for authors to summarize the best available evidence on a topic relevant to the NTD community.
As part of its mission to widen the distribution of scientific literature, PLOS is particularly concerned with the disparities in access to information between developed and developing countries. PLOS provides immediate, free, and unrestricted access to all the scientific and medical literature that it publishes. In addition, PLOS is also dedicated to establishing a medium for publishing science from the developing world. Thus, a major goal of PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases is to promote and profile the efforts of researchers, health practitioners, and public-health experts in endemic countries in order to help build science and health capacity in those regions.
PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases offers the following means of support to authors in developing countries:
Publication fee assistance. Read more.
Editorial support. PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases is organized to provide additional editorial support for authors in developing countries. Manuscripts that are accepted for publication will receive additional support from our editorial staff or professionals from our partner organizations.
International Editorial Board. About 40% of our Associate Editors—who handle peer review of research articles—are based in developing countries. These experts understand the issues involved in confronting these diseases in their endemic settings, and they will help to ensure that the journal is a voice for researchers in these countries. See the Editorial Board.
Worldwide readership. As an Open Access journal, PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases articles will always be freely available online via the journal Web site as well as through PubMed Central. Our content license means that readers are free to download, print, distribute, and translate your work, provided that they give you credit and cite the source. This means that your work will have the broadest possible audience: the entire world. And recent studies suggest that Open Access articles are downloaded and cited more frequently.
Influence. Your research has the chance to be highly influential. Select papers about neglected tropical diseases published in PLOS journals have been downloaded many thousands of times, have been mentioned in international news sources, and have had an important impact on health policy. For example, a paper in PLOS Medicine led to a UN mandate to integrate control of the NTDs into the UN's malaria control efforts.
Criteria for Publication
To be considered for publication in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, any given manuscript must satisfy the following criteria:
Importance and relevance to researchers, practitioners, or policy makers in the field of NTDs
Interest for researchers or practitioners outside the field
Rigorous methodology with conclusions justified by the evidence presented
Adherence to the highest ethical standards
Scientists commonly refer to research as “scooped” when independent groups working on the same topic reach similar conclusions and one group publishes the results first. Although originality is one criterion for studies published in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, “scooped” manuscripts that confirm, replicate, extend, or are complementary to a recently published, significant advance are still eligible for consideration in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. The complementary manuscript must present equally or more rigorous findings than the published study and any submission must also meet the criteria for publication listed above. Authors of the complementary work have six months after the first article’s publication date to submit their manuscript to PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. Studies must be performed comprehensively, and preliminary placeholder studies will not be considered.
The editorial process is run as a partnership between the PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases Editors-in-Chief, the board of Deputy Editors, and a team of academic experts who act as Associate Editors (AEs). These individuals, all of whom are members of the PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases Editorial Board, are leaders in their fields and represent the full breadth of research on NTDs.
Submit Your Manuscript
For more information about submitting to PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, read our checklist for getting started and our guidelines for preparing a submission.
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PLOS applies the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license to works we publish. Under this license, authors agree to make articles legally available for reuse, without permission or fees, for virtually any purpose. Anyone may copy, distribute, or reuse these articles, as long as the author and original source are properly cited. Learn more.
Journal Impact and Article Metrics
PLOS does not consider Impact Factor to be a reliable or useful metric to assess the performance of individual articles. PLOS supports DORA – the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment – and does not promote our journal Impact Factors. We will provide the metric to individuals when specifically requested.
PLOS promotes the use of Article-Level Metrics (ALMs), which enable scientists and the general public to engage more dynamically with published research. ALMs reflect the changing impact of research over time, incorporate academic as well as social impacts of research, and assess the impact of research before the accrual of academic citations. Read more about ALMs.
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