ASAPbio newsletter volume 41

 Peer Review Workshop, preprints as a tool for open science and more

Learn to peer review and get invited to review & edit for journals

'How to peer review' workshop for the Preprint Reviewer Recruitment Network
November 1

noon New York | 9am San Francisco | 5pm London | 6pm Berlin 

Our Preprint Reviewer Recruitment Network is an initiative that allows researchers to share their preprint reviewing experience with journals looking for reviewers or editorial board members. 

To help researchers in the Network develop their expertise with writing preprint reviews, on November 1 we'll host a second 90-minute workshop that will go over the how & why of preprint review and best practices to make reviews as useful as possible for authors and editors. At the workshop there will also be an opportunity to get feedback from an editor on your own review. To participate, please sign up for the network and we’ll email you a link to register for the workshop.

Sign up for the Network
Our preprint events in collaboration with Openlab Ecuador continue 

During October, we are collaborating with Openlab Ecuador and Red de Investigacion de Conocimiento Libre to run a cycle of preprint-related sessions in Spanish. This is an initiative led by the ASAPbio Fellows Sandra Franco Iborra and Pablo Ranea-Robles.

The last session on October 21 (6pm Quito | 7pm New York | 4pm San Francisco) will explore how preprints can be a tool for open science. The session will have Arianna Becerril-Garcia and Juan Pablo Alperin as speakers in a discussion moderated by Carolina Quezada. More information about the cycle and registration at

You can catch up on previous sessions via the Red de Investigacion de Conocimiento Libre Youtube channel.

Webinar 'The impact of preprints for early career researchers'
'The impact of preprints for early career researchers' webinar recap

On October 6, we gathered virtually for a lively discussion about the benefits of preprints for early career researchers with our speakers João Victor Cabral-Costa (University of São Paulo), Nafisa Jadavji (Midwestern University & Carleton University), Iain Cheeseman (Whitehead Institute) and Hannah Hope (Wellcome Trust).

If you missed the webinar, you can find a summary of the discussion on our blog post, and you can also catch up with the recording from the webinar.
Preprint author testimonials

As part of his participation in the Fellows program, Sumeet Pal Singh has developed video testimonials from preprint authors. Head to Youtube to watch the inspiring interviews with Gautam Dey, Maria Sobczyk and Sónia Gomes Pereira

Our thanks to the authors for sharing their stories and to Sumeet for conducting the interviews and producing the videos!

The crowd preprint review trial one month on

Our crowd preprint review trial has now been running for several weeks and Sciety has posted a blog post with an overview of the trial and our experience so far. We have posted the public reviews for six preprints; you can find the reviews on bioRxiv and Sciety.

  • Interested in joining the crowd? You can still sign up here.
  • Would you like feedback on your cell biology preprint? We are seeking preprints for the trial, please contact us (

Meet the 2021 ASAPbio Fellows
The ASAPbio Fellows have been selected to participate in a six-month program that provides them with tools and skills to drive discussions about the productive use of preprints in the life sciences, and to become ASAPbio representatives for their communities. Each month, we feature a few of the 2021 ASAPbio Fellows so you can get to know them better. Read more about the program participants here.

Nethia Mohana Kumaran

I am a Senior Lecturer at Universiti Sains Malaysia (Penang, Malaysia). My team employs genome editing technology and pharmacological approaches to understand how cancer cell survival is controlled. 

I love talking about science with my students at the university. I like to see their look in their eyes when I share with them the latest breakthroughs in science. 

Tomas Aparicio

I am a research scientist at Columbia University Medical Center. I use a combination of biochemical and cell-based approaches to investigate how cells respond to agents that damage the chromosomes and how malfunction of these repair mechanisms contribute to cancer of neurodegenerative diseases.

I believe preprints achieve many science publishing goals, but within a much shorter time frame, while making science more accessible, open, and transparent.

Karen Coghlan

I am currently a Research and Instruction Librarian at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

Science communication is expanding exponentially. There are so many ways to find new data and research. It is important to help researchers figure out how to best share their new research and results so new solutions and innovations can grow. I am excited to be a part of it since it allows me to use my various skills to help others. 

News roundup

'Open Reviewers Toolkit' - PREreview has published its Open Reviewers Toolkit, three guides to help with unbiased review composition and evaluation of manuscripts. The guides are openly available on Zenodo.

'On Dangers of Preprints' - Drawing on papers that attracted scrutiny upon publication, Leonid Schneider discusses preprints and peer-reviewed literature about vaccines and COVID-19, and argues that preprints bring transparency into the scientific process. (Hat tip: Pablo Ranea-Robles).


ASAPbio will participate in

Other events

The UK Reproducibility Network, in partnership with the Medical Research Council, are offering free training to researchers who are keen to train their colleagues in using preprints. The all-day workshop will take place on November 16.

Copyright © 2021 ASAPbio, Execept where noted, content is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license.

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