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November 2006

Author Attribution, Financial Disclosure, and Financial Relationships

Arch Dermatol. 2006;142(11):1498. doi:10.1001/archderm.142.11.1498

The editorial board of the ARCHIVES considered our conflict of interest policy at our September 15, 2006, meeting. Ghost writing and conflicts of interest in biomedical science are under intense scrutiny. We strive to ensure transparency and complete reporting of information under the principle of that which is published with the article informs all readers and that which is revealed after publication appears to be a “cover-up” on the part of the journal and the authors. Note that we require disclosure of all financial relationships. The period of disclosure of relationships is from the time of conception of the study or work until the publication of the manuscript. Since January 2004, the intent of letters sent to authors by the editor was to request the author to disclose all relationships, not only those that the author thought were relevant. The confusing replies received from authors make it necessary to set forth the ARCHIVES attribution and disclosure policy.

To help our authors better understand our requirements for author attribution and disclosure, we provide guidance to aid in the preparation of the material for the title page. Now, this is required prior to our sending all manuscripts for review.

Author Attribution: Clearly define each author's contribution to the work, which includes who prepared the manuscript and who did the statistical analysis. If the manuscript was prepared by someone other than one of the authors, the person and the company that employs them must be named.

Financial and Relationship Disclosure

A. Provide a statement from one author who is independent of any commercial funding (eg, the principal investigator) that she or he “had full access to all the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.”

B. All financial and material support for the research and the work should be clearly and completely identified in the Acknowledgment.

C. Indicate the specific role of the funding organization(s) or sponsor(s) in the “design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of the data; and preparation, review, or approval of the manuscript.”

The component parts of the statement are:

  1. Author Contributions

  2. Funding/Support

  3. Role of the Sponsors

  4. Financial Disclosure of the Authors

  5. Acknowledgment

Author Contributions: Dr ____ had full access to all of the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis. Study concept and design: ____, ____, ____ (list the last names of the authors). Acquisition of data: ____, ____, ____ (list the last names of the authors). Analysis and interpretation of data: ____, ____, ____ (list the last names of the authors). Drafting of the manuscript: ____, ____, ____ (list the last names of the authors, or if written by a medical writer provide the name of the writer or the company performing the writing). Critical revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content: ____, ____, ____ (list the last names of the authors). Statistical analysis: ____, ____, ____ (provide the name of the statistician and their affiliation if the person is not one of the authors). Obtained funding: ____, ____, ____ (list the last names of the authors). Administrative, technical, or material support: ____, ____, ____ (list the last names of the authors). Study supervision: ____, ____, ____ (list the last names of the authors).

Disclosure of funding support and relationships should be divided between those relevant to this manuscript and all other relationships by separately listing RELEVANT TO THIS MANUSCRIPT, and ALL OTHER RELATIONSHIPS:

Funding/Support: This study was supported in part by ____.

Role of the Sponsors: The sponsors had no role in the design and conduct of the study, in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data, or in the preparation of the manuscript, review, or approval of the manuscript.

Financial Disclosure: The authors have no relevant financial interest in this article. OR Drs ____, ____, ____ serve as consultants to ____. Dr ____ is employed by ____ (use the Financial Disclosure checklist that follows to assist you in preparing this section).

Acknowledgment: We are indebted to ____.

All Financial Interests (including pharmaceutical and device products) and Employment ____________

  1. Consultancies ____________

  2. Honoraria ____________

  3. Stock ownership or options ____________

  4. Expert testimony ____________

  5. Grants ____________

  6. Patents ____________

  7. Patent applications ____________

  8. Royalties ____________