Editorial Policies

Focus and Scope

Highlights in BioScience is an international peer-reviewed open access journal which aims at publishing papers of the highest quality in broad aspects of BioScience-related research. The Journal is a monthly published by the International Library of Sciences. It covers all areas of Biology and life sciences. Highlights in BioScience has been fully Open Access and publishes all papers under the liberal CC BY license, giving the life science community quality research to share and discuss. The average time from submission to a first decision is 14 days.

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  •  Biodiversity/Evolution Biology    Chemical Biology
  • Chromosome Biology/Gene Regulation
  • Developmental biology
  • Enzymology/Biochemistry
  • Genetics/Epigenetics/Genomics
  • Microbials/Biofuels
  • Molecular and cellular biology
  • Plant Biology
  • Post-translational Modifications/Proteomics
  • Structural Biology
  • Bioinformatics
  • Database and tools


Section Policies

Research Article

Research Articles are limited to 5,000 words and should make fundamental contributions to our understanding in all areas of Biology and life sciences. These articles should include the elements described below in the section of the Instructions to Authors.

Title page: List title, authors, and affiliations as the first page of a manuscript



Materials and Methods

Results and Discussion (or separated)

Conclusions (optional)

Acknowledgments (optional)


Figures and their captions are inserted after references. Figure files are uploaded separately in the submission system.

Tables and their captions are inserted after figure pages.

supplementary data information captions (if applicable) after table pages. Supplementary data files are uploaded separately.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed


Observations are short descriptions (maximum 1,200 words with a maximum of 2 figures and 25 references) of research results of exceptional importance and an unusual interest to the broad Biology and life sciences community.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Review Article

Review Articles provide a comprehensive summary of research on a certain topic, and a perspective on the state of the field and where it is heading. Reviews are often widely read (for example, by researchers looking for a full introduction to a field) and highly cited. Reviews commonly cite approximately 100 primary research articles.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Mini Review

Mini-reviews are brief (maximum 3,000 words with a maximum of 2 figures or tables) summaries of important developments in Biology and life sciences research. They must be based on published articles and may address any subject within the scope of the journal.

Minireviews must have abstracts. Limit the abstract to 250 words or fewer. The body of the Minireview may have section headings and/or paragraph lead-ins.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Opinions and Hypotheses

Opinions and Hypotheses are short articles (maximum 2,500 words with a maximum of 25 references) that present original and well-developed insights without complete supporting data. This article type places equal importance on new thought that is formulated in a manner that summarizes a problem, provides a new synthesis, and/or is suitable for subsequent experimental testing.

In this category, the journal provides a highly visible venue for the publication of ideas that have the potential to move fields and to challenge the status quo.

Authors should provide an abstract of 150 words or fewer. The body of an Opinions and Hypotheses article may have section headings and/or paragraph lead-ins.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Letter to Editor

Letters to the Editor are intended for comments on articles published in the journal and must cite published references to support the writer’s argument. Letters may be no more than 500 words long and must be typed double-spaced.

All Letters to the Editor must be submitted electronically. The cover letter should refer to the article in question by its title and the last name of the first author. In addition, the volume and issue and/or DOI should be indicated. In the Abstract section of the submission form, put "Not Applicable." Letters to the Editor do not have abstracts. The Letter must have a distinct title, which must appear on the manuscript and on the submission form. Figures and tables should be kept to a minimum.

The Letter will be sent to the editor who handled the article in question. If the editor believes that publication is warranted, he/she will solicit a reply from the corresponding author of the article and make a recommendation to the editor in chief. Final approval for publication rests with the editor in chief.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed


Editorials (maximum 500 words) communicated by members of the Highlights in BioScience Board of Editors address issues of science, politics, or policy.

Editorials should include an abstract of 150 words or fewer

  • Medhat Abdellatef
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Methods and Protocols

Methods and Protocols manuscripts (5,000 word limit) describe major technical and methodological developments in BioScience-related research. These can be bioinformatic or laboratory techniques or any protocols that practically advance the field of Biology and life sciences. The description of each method or protocol must include validation of, or application to, a relevant and important question in Biology and life sciences and provide results demonstrating its performance in comparison to existing state-of-the-art techniques. Articles will be selected on the basis of importance to the field, methodological performance, and detailed description to enable application to the field immediately.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Resource Reports

Resource Reports (5,000 word limit) describe major technical advances and/or major informational databases that would be of interest in Biology and life sciences fields. The manuscripts should include detailed methods and illustration of proof-of-principle so that the new methodology can be replicated and/or utilized by others. Resource Reports follow the same formatting guidelines as Research Articles.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed


Perspectives are brief reviews (maximum 2,000 words) that offer a succinct overview of a specific topic with an emphasis on opinion and synthesis. Authors should provide an abstract of 150 words or fewer. The body of a Perspectives article may have section headings and/or paragraph lead-ins.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed


Commentaries are short invited articles (maximum 1,000 words) that discuss Highlights in BioScience papers or issues of special interest. These are solicited by editors from reviewers or experts in the field.

Authors should provide an abstract of 150 words or fewer. The body of a Commentary may have section headings and/or paragraph lead-ins.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Software and Database

1- Software 

Manuscripts whose primary purpose is the description of new software must provide full details of the algorithms designed. Describe any dependencies on commercial products or operating systems. Include details of the supplied test data and explain how to install and run the software. A brief description of enhancements made in the major releases of the software may also be given. The authors should provide a direct link to the deposited software from within the paper.

2- Database

For descriptions of databases, provide details about how the data were curated, as well as plans for long-term database maintenance, growth, and stability. The authors should provide a direct link to the database hosting site from within the paper.

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed

Peer Review Process

The practice of peer review is to ensure that only good science is published. It is an objective process at the heart of good scholarly publishing and is carried out by all reputable scientific journals. Our referees play a vital role in maintaining the high standards Transport Policy and all manuscripts are peer-reviewed following the procedure outlined below.

Initial manuscript evaluation The Editor first evaluates all manuscripts. It is rare, but it is possible for an exceptional manuscript to be accepted at this stage. Manuscripts rejected at this stage are insufficiently original, have serious scientific flaws, have poor grammar or English language, or are outside the aims and scope of the journal. Those that meet the minimum criteria are normally passed on to at least 2 experts for review.

Type of Peer Review Transport Policy employs double-blind reviewing, where both the referee and author remain anonymous throughout the process.

How the referee is selected Whenever possible, referees are matched to the paper according to their expertise and our database is constantly being updated.



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.


Self-archiving of papers published in Highlights in BioScience

Authors publishing in Highlights in BioScience are encouraged to deposit the final published PDF in their institutional repository or any suitable subject repository on publication.
Authors should provide a link from the deposited version to the URL of the published article on the journal's website; in all cases, the requirement to link to the journal’s website is designed to protect the integrity and authenticity of the scientific record, with the online published version on the journal’s website clearly identified as the definitive version of record.




This journal utilizes the LOCKSS system to create a distributed archiving system among participating libraries and permits those libraries to create permanent archives of the journal for purposes of preservation and restoration. More...


Plagiarism Policy

Highlights in BioScience journal use Plagiarism Detection service provided by Crossref and powered by iThenticate, so the journal is following an instant policy on rejection those received papers with a plagiarism rate of more than 13%. So, All of the authors and contributors must check their papers before submission to making assurance of following our anti-plagiarism policies.


Papers must be original, unpublished, and not pending publication elsewhere. Any material taken verbatim from another source needs to be clearly identified as different from the present original text by (1) indentation, (2) use of quotation marks, and (3) identification of the source.

 Any text of an amount exceeding fair use standards (herein defined as more than two or three sentences or the equivalent thereof) or any graphic material reproduced from another source requires permission from the copyright holder and, if feasible, the original author(s) and also requires identification of the source; e.g., previous publication.

When plagiarism is identified, the Editor in Chief responsible for the review of this paper and will agree on measures according to the extent of plagiarism detected in the paper in agreement with the following guidelines:

Level of Plagiarism

 1.Minor: A short section of another article is plagiarized without any significant data or idea taken from the other paper

Action: A warning is given to the authors and a request to change the text and properly cite the original article is made

2.Intermediate: A significant portion of a paper is plagiarized without proper citation to the original paper

Action: The submitted article is rejected and the authors are forbidden to submit further articles for one year

3. Severe: A significant portion of a paper is plagiarized that involves reproducing original results or ideas presented in another publication

Action: The paper is rejected and the authors are forbidden to submit further articles for five years.

It is understood that all authors are responsible for the content of their submitted paper as they all sign the Highlights in BioScience Copyright Transfer Form. If a penalty is imposed for plagiarism, all authors will be subject to the same penalty.

If the second case of plagiarism by the same author(s) is identified, a decision on the measures to be enforced will be made by the Editorial board (Editor-in-Chief, and Editorial members) with the Chair of the Editor in Chief. The author(s) might be forbidden to submit further articles forever.

This policy applies also to material reproduced from another publication by the same author(s). If an author uses text or figures that have previously been published, the corresponding paragraphs or figures should be identified and the previous publication referenced. It is understood that in case of a review paper or a paper of a tutorial nature much of the material was previously published.

The author should identify the source of the previously published material and obtain permission from the original author and the publisher. If an author submits a manuscript to Highlights in BioScience with significant overlap with a manuscript submitted to another journal simultaneously, and this overlap is discovered during the review process or after the publications of both papers, the editor of the other journal is notified and the case is treated as a severe plagiarism case. Significant overlap means the use of identical or almost identical figures and identical or slightly modified text for one half or more of the paper. For self-plagiarism of less than one half of the paper but more than one-tenth of the paper, the case shall be treated as intermediate plagiarism. If self-plagiarism is confined to the methods section, the case shall be considered as minor plagiarism.

 If an author uses some of his previously published material to clarify the presentation of new results, the previously published material shall be identified and the difference to the present publication shall be mentioned. Permission to republish must be obtained from the copyright holder. In the case of a manuscript that was originally published in conference proceedings and then is submitted for publication in Highlights in BioScience either in identical or in expanded form, the authors must identify the name of the conference proceedings and the date of the publication and obtain permission to republish from the copyright holder. The editor may decide not to accept this paper for publication.

However, an author shall be permitted to use material from an unpublished presentation, including visual displays, in a subsequent journal publication. In the case of a publication being submitted, that was originally published in another language, the title, date, and journal of the original publication must be identified by the authors, and the copyright must be obtained. The editor may accept such a translated publication to bring it to the attention of a wider audience. The editor may select a specific paper that had been published (e.g. a “historic” paper) for republication in order to provide a better perspective of a series of papers published in one issue of Highlights in BioScience. This republication shall be clearly identified as such and the date and journal of the original publication shall be given, and the permission of the author(s) and the publisher shall be obtained.

The Highlights in BioScience layout editor for the Journal is responsible for maintaining the list of authors subjected to penalties and will check that no authors of a submitted paper are on this list. If a banned author is identified, the layout editor will inform the Editor-in-Chief who will take appropriate measures. This policy will be posted on the web site with the instructions for submitting a manuscript, and a copy will be sent to the authors with the confirmation email upon initial receipt of their original manuscript. A sentence shall be added to the copyright transfer form to indicate that the author(s) have read the Plagiarism Policy.


Open Access Statement

All articles published open access will be immediately and permanently free for everyone to read, download, copy, and distribute. Permitted reuse is defined by Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license.

Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY): lets others distribute and copy the article, to create extracts, abstracts, and other revised versions, adaptations or derivative works of or from an article (such as a translation), to include in a collective work (such as an anthology), to text or data mine the article, even for commercial purposes, as long as they credit the author(s), do not represent the author as endorsing their adaptation of the article, and do not modify the article in such a way as to damage the author's honor or reputation.