Publishing with Cureus for the first time? Check out our new how-to videos!

New to Cureus? Has it been awhile since you last published with us? Good news! Our revamped Author Guide now features a series of short, snackable how-to videos designed to walk you through each step of the article submission process.

Just click the blue video icon next to select headers located throughout the Author Guide to view a short video walking you through that specific step of the submission process. We recommend taking a few minutes to watch the videos for each of the eight article submission steps before beginning the process. Taking ten minutes now will save you time later!

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An Introduction to Cureus’ First Student Ambassador

The processes of peer-reviewed medical science have been around a very long time with the New England Journal of Medicine even passing its 200th anniversary last year. It, like many other old journals, has become venerated for the important science reported over the centuries, and in conjunction, there has evolved the aura of scholarly respect and status. In fact the prestige of a journal, perpetuated by medical school tenure processes, and as quantified by Impact Factor, is roughly proportional to the age of the journal. Roughly speaking, old journals are prestigious, while new journals tend not to be; academic medicine tends to be a very tradition-leaning and status-conscientious community! Despite its relative youth, Cureus’ leadership team also includes a number of senior academics, some of whom have five decades of medical publishing under their belts. Our advisor and former editor at JAMA, George Lundberg, is a perfect example; experience always has a lot to teach us all.

Despite medicine’s veneration of history, it cannot be denied that the future belongs to the young, and just possibly, they might choose to evolve peer-reviewed journalism in new directions. In the past decade, youthful exploits have truly transformed human culture and commerce, with Facebook, Google, Uber and AirBnB being only a few cases in point. In many ways the pace of social change seems to be accelerating on the backs of the young. To date, youthful exuberance has not been part of science, however, Cureus is hoping to change that. As we aspire to be a new concept in peer-reviewed medicine, we would like to introduce Cureus’ first medical student ambassador, Paul Windisch, from the University of Munich. Paul’s role at Cureus will be to help introduce our tools for publishing peer-reviewed science to a new generation of physicians and simultaneously provide our team with a deeper insight to the needs and aspirations of younger doctors.

When stepping into this new role, Paul was quick to encounter a little bit of skepticism among fellow students. Their concern was whether or not publishing an article in a newer journal like Cureus, and thereby not publishing in a more conventional journal, might negatively impact the career of an aspiring young academic; many professors have stressed the importance of publishing in the most highly-regarded journals. My counterargument is that by all means it’s good to publish in prestigious journals, but do not let that dissuade one from publishing in Cureus as well. To publish in Lancet or Nature or NEJM is a very time-consuming process with much of the effort being expended throughout the rationing process of responding to multiple rejections, each one eating up precious time that might have gone into publishing yet additional papers. The most successful scholarly careers in medicine tend to combine important papers in highly-regarded journals AND much more numerous peer reviewed articles in lesser-known journals. Quality (or at least the perception of such) is important, but so is the QUANTITY of one’s scholarly work as one seeks to become known and rise through the academic ranks. As the maxim “publish or perish” clearly implies, it is important to publish frequently as one seeks to build an academic reputation. Need I remind you, Cureus makes that process easier than ever. Just maybe when Cureus has enough of its own storied history in the future, the aura of our articles will bring the cachet of academic tradition as well!

Hear From the Co-Founder: Dr. Alexander Muacevic

alexander-muacevic_01Cureus: Tell us about your background – how did you decide to pursue a career in medicine? How did you settle on brain surgery?

Alex: I started my medical career at the University of Mainz and did my doctoral on surgical strategies for multiple intracranial aneurysms. I was always fascinated by the option to work at the very central part of human beings – the brain. I got the chance to participate in one of the best neurosurgery programs in our country at the University of Munich Hospitals and finished the residency program there in 2003.

Cureus: You’ve also worked as the Director of the European Cyberknife Center in Munich for the past 9 years. How did you get involved with Cyberknife radiosurgery? What’s a typical day like for you at the Cyberknife Center?

During my residency program I got more acquainted with the possibilities of brain radiosurgery and it was obvious to me that this kind of non-invasive and equally effective therapy for certain tumors has a big future perspective. I did an additional two years of training in radiation oncology and teamed up with my partner Berndt Wowra who already was an experienced brain radiosurgeon. During that time we learned about the new radiosurgery innovation called Cyberknife and decided to found a new center together with the University of Munich Hospitals to offer this kind of treatment option for the first time in Germany. My ambition was and is to establish radiosurgery as a full body treatment method for the whole body, not only the brain.

Cureus: And as if that wasn’t enough, you’re also a professor at the University of Munich! What can you tell us about your professorial experiences over the years?

Alex: During my residency I worked on several research projects to do a thesis for an additional medical degree which is similar to the Ph.D. in the U.S.. Since I continued to publish scientific contributions after my thesis, the University of Munich appointed me a full professor in 2013. I was fortunate to receive this title as this is something you can not apply for yourself.

Cureus: How did you get involved with Cureus? What attracted you to the concept of an open-access, free-to-publish medical journal?

Alex: I’ve known John Adler for many years and we were both very involved in a medical society called The Radiosurgery Society. Initially our idea was to establish a medical journal for this society but when we started to work on it we came to the conclusion that there is urgent demand for a new way for medical publications to take on the web capabilities of the 21st century. We started with a small group and called our platform Peeremed.com. It was obvious that we needed to step up and find a more professional group to pursue our dreams of a real powerful web 2.0 journal plattform for the upcoming publishing generation. We had contacted several groups in Germany, but as all of the big web innovations nowadays come out of Silicon Valley we worked on establishing the new company – Cureus.com – in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Cureus: Not only are you a co-founder of Cureus, but you’re also the Co-Editor-in-Chief – what does that entail? Describe your daily editorial duties.

Alex: My job is to manage the articles from submission to final publication. I need to make sure they fulfill the criteria of a scientific contribution in terms of data quality, and also bureaucratic aspects like disclosures and conflict of interest. Furthermore I manage the review process with our team to achieve fast and high-quality reviews for our authors.

Cureus: Peer-reviewed medical science has grown increasingly political of late, with accusations of reviewer and editorial bias. What are your thoughts on this? Why is Cureus different?

Alex: Cureus offers the most unbiased possibility for publishing scientific data, as the decisions of how and what to publish remain up to the author. The author himself is responsible for his data, he keeps his copyright and is evaluated by the scientific community-at-large similar to ratings at YouTube or Amazon. This is a huge difference from the conventional publication process where two or three so-called insiders decide what is published or rejected – a very biased and inadequate way to evaluate the academic work of your fellow researchers.

Cureus: Thanks so much for taking the time!

Alex: Thank you.

ZEISS/Cureus Competition Spotlight: 3rd Place Article

ZEISS recently partnered with Cureus to host a publishing competition focused on microscope-integrated intraoperative fluorescence. The competition attracted articles submitted from all over the world, with the final field of published articles standing at 10. While prizes have already been awarded, we wanted to take some time to recognize a few of the highest-scoring articles.

Today we’ll take a look at the 3rd place article, “Indocyanine Green Videoangiography and Intraoperative Catheter Digital Subtraction Angiography in the Treatment of Intracranial Aneurysms: A Consecutive Series of 235 Cases,” written by Archie Defillo, Mushtaq Qureshi and Eric Nussbaum. Receiving an SIQ score of 6.9, this deserving article could’ve easily finished in either of the top two spots.

Cureus Editor-in-Chief Dr. John Adler was impressed with the scope of the article, focusing on the fact that “this article represents one of the largest published clinical series reporting experience with intraoperative fluorescence microscopy.”

Co-Editor-in-Chief Dr. Alexander Muacevic was also pleased with the article: “Large patient series of Indocyanine Green Videoangiography and Intraoperative Catheter Digital Subtraction Angiography in the treatment of intracranial aneurysms with distinct results and suggestions for the daily clinical praxis. Interesting to read for all neurovascular surgeons.”

Perhaps the size of this study is a sign that we’ll soon see larger and larger undertakings in the research and reporting of intraoperative fluorescence. That’s it for our coverage of the ZEISS/Cureus Intraoperative Fluorescence Publishing Competition. You can find the complete list of published articles here. Contact us at info@cureus.com to learn more about hosting your own competition!

Cureus Advisor Dr. George Lundberg Wins 2014 ASCP Ward Burdick Award for Distinguished Service to Pathology

Cureus is thrilled to share the news that Dr. George Lundberg, special advisor to Cureus, was recently bestowed the 2014 ASCP Ward Burick Award for Distinguished Service to Pathology. Awarded annually by the Board of Directors of the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP), the ASCP Ward Burick Award was presented to Dr. Lundberg during the ASCP Annual Meeting in Tampa, Florida on October 9.

Citing Dr. Lundberg’s illustrious career and extensive history as both educator and editor, the ASCP stated, “Dr. Lundberg has advocated for pathologists to play the critical role as the ‘interpreter’ who guides clinicians to select the appropriate diagnostic test and encourages medical laboratories to focus on the quality outcomes of diagnostic testing, rather than the volume of testing they perform.”

Dr. George LundbergWhen asked for his reactions to winning the ASCP Ward Burick Award, Dr. George Lundberg stated, “I have always, or at least since about 1969, believed that a laboratory test is a loop that begins when an individual decides to obtain a laboratory test, proceeds through a series of some 9 steps such as ordering, specimen collection, transportation, analysis, reporting and interpretation and ends with an action. Like a chain being only as strong as its weakest link, the test is only valid if all steps are completed correctly. In 2014, in AJCP, I proposed that we should add a 10th step…outcome….as a routine in what has come to be known as the ‘Brain to Brain Loop in Laboratory Testing.'”

Join us in congratulating Dr. Lundberg on his achievement – we are thrilled that he is part of the Cureus team!

SBMT and Cureus Team Up To Accelerate the Publication of Leading Edge Neuroscience

One challenge of the twenty-first century is to catalyze the development of medical advances from basic science. To help accelerate diagnostic and therapeutic discoveries, one of the leading multispecialty and multidisciplinary associations, Society for Brain Mapping and Therapeutics, has teamed with Cureus, an innovative online open-access medical journal, to bring together clinicians, scientists, engineers and policy makers from multiple disciplines who share this aspiration of improving patient care. The two cutting edge organizations believe their partnership is essential to bring about advances in neurosurgery, radiology, neurology, stem cell research, nanotechnology and psychiatry.

“Cureus is a free, open access, peer-reviewed journal that rapidly publishes a broad range of medical science including all types of articles, posters and meeting abstracts,” said John Adler, Professor of Neurosurgery at Stanford University and Cureus Founder.

Cureus’ browser based tools enable well written articles to be routinely peer reviewed and published in less than one week. The journal is the first and only journal employing “crowd sourcing” to ascertain the scientific quality of published peer-reviewed articles. While accepting a broad range of medical science, Cureus focuses on advanced technology and innovative medical procedures. Additionally, case reports are enthusiastically welcomed and routinely published.

“Cureus seeks to find the broadest possible audience for every paper, including curious patients, and uniquely offers a “Patient Reported Outcome” section that runs in parallel with articles reporting clinical outcomes,” stated John Adler.

Cureus also uniquely supports the solicitation of charitable gifts to an author’s not-for-profit research fund; this could be a great tool for SBMT, which is a non-profit organization that encourages scientists in areas of brain mapping, engineering, stem cells, nanotechnology, imaging, and medical devices to improve the diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of patients with neurological disorders.

“We believe this collaboration will provide an additional tool for our colleagues and members who are thinking out of the box and taking a multidisciplinary approach to solving complex neurological disorders,” said Dr. Ramin Rak, SBMT board member and neurosurgeon at Winthrop University.

Cureus and SBMT will be exhibiting their vision at the Congress of Neurological Surgeons in Boston, MA next week from October 20-22 at booth 660 in the exhibit hall of the Boston Convention Center.

To learn more about SBMT, visit http://www.worldbrainmapping.org

ZEISS/Cureus Competition Spotlight: 1st & 2nd Place Articles

ZEISS recently partnered with Cureus to host a publishing competition focused on microscope-integrated intraoperative fluorescence. The competition attracted articles submitted from all over the world, with the final field of published articles standing at 10. While prizes have already been awarded, we wanted to take some time to recognize a few of the highest-scoring articles.

The articles featured today finished the competition in 1st and 2nd place, respectively.

With a final SIQ score of 7.5, the winner of the Grand Prize for Scientific Acclaim, A Bioengineered Peptide that Localizes to and Illuminates Medulloblastoma: A New Tool with Potential for Fluorescence-Guided Surgical Resection was submitted by Shelley Ackerman, Christy Wilson, Suzana Kahn, James Kintzing, Darren Jindal, Samuel Cheshier, Gerald Grant & Jennifer Cochran.

Cureus Co-Editor-in-Chief Dr. Alexander Muacevic had this to say about the winning article, “It’s all about finding ways to better illuminate brain tumors for complete tumor resection – something I feel this article certainly accomplished.”

The 2nd place article, recieving an SIQ score of 7.0, was Fluorescence-Guided Tumor Visualization Using the Tumor Paint BLZ-100, and was submitted by David Kittle, Adam Mamelak, Julia Parrish-Novak, Stacey Hansen, Rameshwar Patil, Pallavi Gangalum, Julia Ljubimova, Keith Black and Pramod Butte.

Dr. Muacevic, again with his thoughts: “This is an interesting new innovation and I congratulate the authors for their work. They developed an imaging system for in-vivo imaging of the tumor ligand BLZ-100 for use in surgical resections of gliomas. Next step is to prove the clinical application. Ultimately the question remains if a clinical benefit in terms of prolonged survival can be demonstrated using this new innovation.”

Meanwhile, Cureus Founder and Co-Editor-in-Chief, Dr. John Adler chipped in with his reaction: “Both of these gorgeous articles are examples of cutting edge science which will enable futuristic intraoperative fluorescence techniques to do ever better tumor resections.”

We’re thrilled that these excellent articles were submitted and published as part of the competition and we’re looking forward to publishing many more as our competitions continue! Stay tuned for a look at the 3rd place article!

Cureus in the Field: A Visit to Carl Zeiss Meditec

ZEISS 1 A few members of the Cureus team recently took some time out of their day to visit the folks over at Carl Zeiss Meditec in warm, sunny Dublin, California. (Weather that is, sadly, all too rare here in San Francisco.) The purpose of our visit was to provide a wrap-up of the recently concluded ZEISS/Cureus Intraoperative Fluorescence Publishing Competition.

We delivered the final competition statistics and took a look at all of the great articles submitted as part of the competition. We can’t thank ZEISS enough for taking a chance on this original and exciting marketing opportunity, an opportunity that both parties can now comfortably label a success!

Stay tuned for more information on future Cureus publishing competitions and feel free to reach out to us at info@cureus.com if your organization is interested in learning more about this exciting opportunity!

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ZEISS & Cureus Intraoperative Fluorescence Competition Results

Five months, ten published articles and countless article views later, we’ve finally arrived at the finish line. Cureus would like to thank all of the submitting authors for their excellent work, the reviewer panel for their tireless efforts and the Cureus community for pitching in to read and score the articles. By publishing ten articles on the topic of microscope-integrated intraoperative fluorescence, we’ve managed to increase the world literature on the topic by roughly 27%!

Additionally, the competition has thus far generated 19,617 article views and 377 article scorings – we’re beyond excited that our authors’ work has generated such a fevered response.

As a reminder, prizes are awarded to three articles: The Grand Prize for Scientific Acclaim ($3,000) is awarded to the article with the highest SIQ score. Educator Awards ($1,000 each) are awarded to two articles: the most viewed article and the article receiving the most audience engagement (SIQ scorings + comments).

Without further ado, we’re pleased to announce the winning articles of the ZEISS/Cureus Intraoperative Fluorescence Publishing Competition:

Grand Prize for Scientific Acclaim (7.5 SIQ): “A Bioengineered Peptide that Localizes to and Illuminates Medulloblastoma: A New Tool with Potential for Fluorescence-Guided Surgical Resection” by Ackerman, Wilson, Kahn, Kintzing, Jindal, Cheshier, Grant & Cochran

Educator Award (6,713 article views): “The Use of 5-ALA in Glioblastoma Resection: Two Cases with Long-Term Progression-Free Survival” by Awad & Sloan

Educator Award (92 audience actions): “Intraoperative Photodynamic Surgery (iPDS) with Acridine Orange for Musculoskeletal Sarcomas​” by Kusuzaki, Matsubara, Satonaka, Matsumine, Nakamura, Sudo, Murata, Hosogi & Baldini

Winning submitting authors will be contacted with additional instructions for claiming their prizes.

Complete competition statistics:

  • 19,617 article views
  • 377 SIQ scorings
  • 80 author and audience article shares
  • 670 clicks resulting from these shares
  • 8 minutes – the average engagement time per user

Thanks again to all of the competition authors, reviewers and community members for helping determine our winners. Please feel free to contact us at info@cureus.com if you’d like to learn more about our publishing competitions.

Introducing Patient Reported Outcomes: Telling Both Sides of the Story

We’re excited to announce the addition of Patient Reported Outcomes to Cureus! Cureus articles are written by practicing physicians or medical researchers with an audience consisting of largely the same population. With Patient Reported Outcomes (PROs), Cureus is adding a new wrinkle to this tried-and-true system by allowing patients studied within Cureus articles to share the spotlight with the physicians and researchers.

With a PRO, a patient gets to share his or her experience from the other side of the knife, so to speak. From consultation to procedure to post-op, our readers can get a layman’s perspective while also learning what it would be like to undergo such a procedure themselves. Not only are PROs beneficial to potential patients, but to doctors as well. The inclusion of a Patient Reported Outcome with your published article can provide relevant, easily digestible evidence when recommending certain procedures to your current patients – just direct them to the PRO as a way of educating them about a potential course of action.

A recently published PROEach submitted PRO receives editing for spelling and grammatical errors by Cureus staff, but all PROs are otherwise published as is, with no interference from the article authors or the Cureus editorial team. PRO authors can also include supplemental images to be published alongside their words.

Check out our first published PROs below! Just click on the link and then click the purple “PRO” tab near the top of the article to read the patient reported outcomes for the following articles:

Transient Tumor Volume Increase in Vestibular Schwannomas after Radiotherapy

CyberKnife Ablation for Intramedullary Spinal Cord Arteriovenous Malformations (AVMs): A Promising New Therapeutic Approach

Would you like to add a PRO to one of your published articles? Contact your patient today – once patient consent has been obtained, we’ll gladly start a dialogue with the patient author!