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  • 1. How to Write for and Publish in Scientific Journals I Jeff Robens, PhD27 December 2012 Senior Editor
  • 2. About Jeff… Researcher Teacher Mentor Author Peer reviewer Senior Editor
  • 3. Today’s presentation … Abstracts Manuscript structure Writing style
  • 4. Abstracts Who’s hungry?First impressions are important!
  • 5. Section 1Abstracts
  • 6. Abstracts Important points Relevance of Importance of Validity of your your aims your results conclusions First impression of your paper Judge your Probably only part writing style that will be read
  • 7. Abstracts General guide Background: why the study was done andwhat is the aim of the study Methods: describe techniques andmaterials used Results: most important findings, alwaysthe largest section of the abstract Conclusion: main conclusion and majorimplications
  • 8. Abstracts Unstructured abstract The switching of focal adhesion maturation sites and actin filament activation for MSCs by topography of well-defined micropatterned surfaces Securing robust cell adhesion between cells and biomaterials is one of key considerations for tissue engineering. However, the cell adhesion investigation by the biophysical effects such as topography or rigidity of substrates has only been recently reported. In this study, we examined the spatial property of focal adhesions by changing the height of micropatterns in two kinds of microtopography (grid and post) and the stiffness of the substrates. We found that the focal adhesion localization is highly regulated by topographical variation (height) of gird micropattens but not the rigidity of substrates or the function of actin cytoskeleton, although the latters strongly influence the focal adhesion size or area. In detail, the change of the height of the grid micropatterns results in the switching of focal adhesion sites; as the height increases, the localization of focal adhesion is switched from top to bottom areas. This study demonstrates that the localization of focal adhesion on well-defined micropatterned substrates is critically determined by the topographical variation in the micropatterns. Seo et al. (2012) Biomaterials 34: 1764‒1771.
  • 9. Abstracts Unstructured abstractSecuring robust cell adhesion between cells and biomaterials is one of key considerationsfor tissue engineering. However, the cell adhesion investigation by the biophysical effects Backgroundsuch as topography or rigidity of substrates has only been recently reported.In this study, we examined the spatial property of focal adhesions by changing the height ofmicropatterns in two kinds of microtopography (grid and post) and the stiffness of the Aims/Methodssubstrates.We found that the focal adhesion localization is highly regulated by topographical variation(height) of gird micropattens but not the rigidity of substrates or the function of actincytoskeleton, although the latters strongly influence the focal adhesion size or area. In Importantdetail, the change of the height of the grid micropatterns results in the switching of focal resultsadhesion sites; as the height increases, the localization of focal adhesion is switched fromtop to bottom areas.This study demonstrates that the localization of focal adhesion on well-definedmicropatterned substrates is critically determined by the topographical variation in the Conclusionmicropatterns. Seo et al. (2012) Biomaterials 34: 1764‒1771.
  • 10. Abstracts References Abbreviations Don’t include… Non-essentialJargon/slang numbers & statistics
  • 11. Abstracts Do not include a lot of numbers and statistics Rigidity-driven growth and migration of epithelial cells on microstructured anisotropic substratesResultsFor two different heights of the pillars (L = 4.7 and 3.3 µm) corresponding todifferent spring constants (k˶ = 19 and 56 nN/µm, respectively), a cartography of thelocal forces and the magnitude showed that the forces at the edges weresignificantly greater than those inside the islands…Furthermore, the two poles ofthe islands along the stiffest direction (θ = 0°) exert significantly larger forcescompared with the perpendicular direction.AbstractRegions of high tractional stress and large cellular deformations within the sheets ofcells are concentrated at the edges, in particular at the two poles of the islands alongtheir long axis… Saez et al. (2007) PNAS 104: 8281-8286.
  • 12. Abstracts Normal Abstracts Collagen type IV-specific tripeptides for selective adhesion of endothelial and smooth muscle cells Kanie et al. (2012) Biotechnol Bioeng 109: 1808‒1816.
  • 13. Abstracts Graphical Abstracts
  • 14. Section 2Manuscript Structure
  • 15. Structuring your manuscript Telling a story Beginning ‘tell them what you wanted to do and why’ Middle ‘tell them how you did it and what you found’ End ‘tell them again what you did and what it means’
  • 16. Structuring your manuscript IMRaD Abstract Introduction The beginning Methods The middle Results and Discussion The end
  • 17. Structuring your manuscript The ‘write’ order Methods Results During your research Introduction Discussion After selecting target journal Title Abstract Write last
  • 18. Structuring your manuscript Introduction Sufficient background information Puts your work into context General Specific Objectives
  • 19. Structuring your New biocompatible manuscript scaffold for osteoporosis Osteoporosis Bioengineering Material
  • 20. Structuring your manuscript Methods Subheadings with multiple methodsNew methods must be described in sufficientdetail that they can be reproduced Established methods can be referenced
  • 21. Structuring your manuscript Results Past tense to describe your results Do not explain the results Avoid duplicating data among figures, tables and text
  • 22. Structuring your manuscript Display items Present a large amount of data quickly andefficiently Keep it simple — use separate panels ifnecessary Label all parts of your figures Legends must be able to ‘stand alone’
  • 23. Structuring your manuscript Tables Clear concise legend/caption ) Dataformattedfor clarity Abbreviations defined
  • 24. Structuring your manuscript Figures Separate panels Clear indicators …shows silver staining of two representative glomeruli in biopsy Clear, ‘stand specimens from patients. In Patient 4 (left), mesangiolysis (singlealone’ legend arrow), prominent endothelial swelling (arrowhead), red-cell fragments (double arrows), and thrombi are visible in some capillary loops… Eremina et al. (2008). The New England Journal of Medicine.
  • 25. Structuring your manuscript Discussion Summarize key findingsBeginning State major conclusion Interpret results in context of other Middle studies Describe limitations Restate major conclusion End Applications/implications Suggest future work
  • 26. Section 3Writing Style
  • 27. Writing Style Japanese vs. English scientific writing style Japanese English Passive voice Active voice Cause/reason Conclusion comes first comes first Followed by Followed by conclusion explanation
  • 28. Writing Style Readability Your reader should… Only have to read once Not have to read slowly Understand your logic immediately
  • 29. Writing Style Increasing readability: 1. Verb placement• Readers expect verbs to closely follow subjects Subject Sentence Verb Verb
  • 30. Writing Style Verb placement• Readers become confused when subject and verb are separated by too much contentThe smallest of the URFs (URFA6L), a 207-nucleotide (nt)reading frame overlapping out of phase the [NH2]-terminalportion of the adenosinetriphosphatase (ATPase) subunit 6gene, has been identified as the animal equivalent of therecently discovered yeast H-ATPase subunit 8 gene.
  • 31. Writing Style Avoid reader confusionThe smallest of the URFs is URFA6L, a 207-nucleotide (nt) reading frame overlapping out of phasethe [NH2]-terminal portion of the adenosinetriphosphatase (ATPase) subunit 6 gene, has beenidentified as the animal equivalent of the recently discovered yeast H-ATPase subunit 8 gene.The smallest of the URFs (URFA6L) has been identified as theanimal equivalent of the recently discovered yeast H-ATPasesubunit 8 gene; URFA6L is a 207-nucleotide (nt) reading frameoverlapping out of phase the [NH2]-terminal portion of theadenosinetriphosphatase (ATPase) subunit 6 gene.We identified the smallest of the URFs (URFA6L) as the animalequivalent of the recently discovered yeast H-ATPase subunit 8gene. URFA6L is a … .
  • 32. Writing Style Increasing readability: 2. Active voice Subject Verb Active• Sentences written in the active voice are: simple direct clear easy to read
  • 33. Writing Style Increasing readability 3. Stress position• Readers focus on information at the end of a sentence. Subject Verb take-home information
  • 34. Writing Style Stress position• Cell attachment increased on UV-O3-treated polydimethylsiloxane.• Cell attachment increased on PDMS after UV-O3 treatment.• UV-O3 treatment of PDMS increased cell attachment.• Readers, without thinking, concentrate on the end of a sentence.
  • 35. Writing Style Increasing readability 4. Topic position• Readers expect a sentence/phrase to be a story about whoever shows up first Subject Topic position Verb Stress position
  • 36. Writing Style Topic position sentence idea idea idea idea Topic link• Linkage and contextCell death increased after injection into the bioreactor.Therefore, the flow rate was decreased to help minimizesheer stress. Cell viability significantly improved at a flowrate of o.1 μl/min.
  • 37. Writing Style Increasing readability: 5. Short sentences Reading once…4% of readers can understand a 27-word sentence75% of readers can understand a 17-word sentence Pinner and Pinner (1998) Communication Skills Goals to aim for: Maximum 25 words per sentenceLess than four 30-word sentences in the manuscript