Editorial Policies

Jump To:


Authorship criteria

All authors listed in a manuscript submitted to Blood Advances must have contributed substantially to the work. Upon submission of the manuscript, the corresponding author must indicate, in the online submission and in the Authorship section of the manuscript, the specific contribution of each author. Examples of appropriate designations include: designed research, performed research, contributed vital new reagents or analytical tools, collected data, analyzed and interpreted data, performed statistical analysis, and/or wrote the manuscript. An author may list more than one type of contribution and more than one author may have contributed to the same aspect of the work. The corresponding author assumes responsibility for obtaining permission from all coauthors for the submission of any/all version(s) of the manuscript and for any changes in authorship.

If a manuscript reports on the results of a clinical trial run by a study group or collaborative clinical trials network, those members who meet criteria for authorship should be listed individually in the byline.  For studies with a large number of authors, the journal reserves the right to request creation of a study group before publication. The corresponding author may be contacted by the Blood Advances office in such cases. In your correspondence, please clearly define the role of each author according to Blood Advances’ criteria.

If authorship is attributed to a group listed as author (e.g., only the group name is in the byline or in addition to one or more individual authors), all members of the group must meet the full criteria and requirements for authorship as described above and they are acknowledged as authors in Medline. The group members who do not meet the formal authorship criteria listed above but who contributed materially as collaborators may be named in the Appendix and if the manuscript is accepted, their names will be listed in an online supplemental Appendix. The group members listed in Acknowledgments or in the Appendix are acknowledged as collaborators in Medline/PubMed.

All individuals share responsibility for any manuscript they coauthor. Some coauthors have responsibility for the entire manuscript as an accurate, verifiable report of the research. These include coauthors accountable for the conception or execution of the research reported in the paper, the integrity and analysis of the data, or the writing of the manuscript. Coauthors with specific, limited contributions to a paper are responsible for their contributions but may have only limited responsibility for other results. While not all coauthors may be familiar with all aspects of the research presented in the manuscript, all coauthors should have in place an appropriate process for reviewing the accuracy of the reported results. Each author should review and approve the manuscript before publication.  The corresponding author is responsible for the integrity of the work as a whole.

For more information on this important topic, see the Authorship section in the CSE’s White Paper on Promoting Integrity in Scientific Journal Publications.

Conflict of interest disclosure

The American Society of Hematology (ASH), as the publisher, and Blood Advances journal are committed to ensuring the integrity of all their activities. The conflict of interest disclosure policy for Blood Advances contributors requires each author to disclose all relevant financial and other interests, regardless of amount or value, which might be construed as resulting in an actual, potential, or apparent conflict in one’s role as contributor to Blood Advances.

At the time of submission to Blood Advances, authors are required to disclose any potential conflict of interest, which may include one or more of the following: employment; consultancy within the past two years; ownership interests (including stock options) in a start-up company, the stock of which is not publicly traded; ownership interest (including stock options but excluding indirect investments through mutual funds and the like) in a publicly traded company; research funding; honoraria received directly from an entity; paid expert testimony within the past two years; any other potential financial relationship (e.g., holding a patent or receiving royalties); and/or membership on another entity’s Board of Directors or its advisory committees (whether for profit or not for profit).

Any involvement by pharmaceutical or medical device company employees or medical writers supported by a pharmaceutical or medical device company in the writing of an article must be clearly defined and disclosed in the Conflict-of-Interest Disclosure section of the manuscript (if the individual is an author) or the Acknowledgments section (if the individual is not an author).

For Review Articles and Blood Advances Talks: Pharmaceutical or medical device company employees and medical writers supported by a pharmaceutical or medical device company are not permitted to have any role in writing these articles. Please direct any questions regarding this policy to the Editor-in-Chief prior to submission.

If the authors have no conflict of interest to declare, they must state this at submission. It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to review this policy with all authors and to collectively list ALL pertinent commercial relationships in the manuscript (under the Acknowledgment section or in the Authorship section) and in the metadata of the online submission.

It is important to note that this policy and the disclosure statements will not be regarded as creating a presumption of impropriety in the existence of financial interests or other relationships of a commercial nature. Instead Blood Advances’ purpose is to inform its editors, reviewers, and readers of the existence of financial relationships pertinent to the article in the interest of full transparency in the peer review and publication processes.

During the peer review process any conflicts of interest will be disclosed only to editors and reviewers, who will keep them confidential. If the paper is accepted for publication in Blood Advances, all disclosures, including statements of no conflict of interest, will appear in published article, in the Authorship section.

Upon acceptance, all authors are asked to sign their electronic copyright transfer using Bench>Press, which is available to all authors upon successful initial submission and requires authors to confirm that any relevant conflicts of interest are disclosed in the manuscript. An article will not be published in the journal until all signatures are received.

To read the complete ASH Conflict of Interest policy, click here.


Blood Advances accepts only manuscripts that describe original work, no part of which has been currently submitted for publication elsewhere except as brief abstracts. Authors should take care to exclude overlap and duplication of text or figures between manuscripts dealing with related materials. Copies of existing manuscripts with overlapping or duplicated material should be submitted together with the manuscript as supplemental data files so that the Editors can judge the originality of the material and its suitability for publication. Submission of duplicate (redundant) content, already published elsewhere, will be considered a breach of ethical conduct and will trigger severe consequences. See also section III. D. “Overlapping Publications” of the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals and section 3.2.2 “Definition of Research Misconduct” in CSE’s White Paper on Publication Ethics.

A manuscript containing material that was previously presented as a digital poster presented in a conference or meeting with an online poster repository or videotaped will be considered for publication in Blood Advances as long as significant new information is included.

Principles for publication of medical research involving human subjects

All studies that involve human subjects must abide by the rules of the appropriate institutional review board (or equivalent organization) of the institution in which the research was conducted and by the tenets of the World Medical Association’s most recently revised Declaration of Helsinki. A statement regarding ethical approval and Helsinki compliance must be included in the Methods section of the paper.

Published studies that involve human subjects should not provide subjects’ identifying information (e.g., names, true initials, recognizable images) unless the information is essential for scientific purposes and the patient (or the patient’s parent/guardian) gives written informed consent for publication. If your study requires the appropriate written consent, please send a statement to affirming that you possess the patient’s written consent. See the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals for further information.

All studies using animals should follow the ARRIVE guidelines for reporting in vivo experiments in animal research. A statement regarding institutional animal care and use committee approval (or equivalent) must be included in the Methods section of the paper.

Data sharing, distribution of reagents, and compound structure disclosure

Data sharing

Blood Advances supports the efforts of the National Academy of Sciences to encourage open sharing of publication-related data. As a condition of publication in Blood Advances, authors must make renewable materials, datasets, and protocols available to other investigators without unreasonable restrictions. Blood Advances adheres to the belief that authors should include in their publications the data, algorithms, or other information that are integral to the publication or make it freely and readily accessible. Authors should use public repositories for data whenever possible and make patented material available under a license for research use.

Distribution of reagents

Blood Advances policy requires that any readily renewable resources mentioned in a journal article and not already obtainable from commercial sources be made available to all qualified investigators in the field. The policy stems from the principle that authenticity requires reproducibility. Publication in Blood Advances constitutes de facto acceptance of this policy by the authors. Included are reagents that can be easily provided; specifically, nucleic acid sequences, cDNA and genomic clones, cell lines, and monoclonal antibody clones. Small amounts (sufficient for the replication of any in vitro work reported) of novel protein reagents are also considered transferable.

Although the Editors appreciate that many of the reagents mentioned in Blood Advances may be proprietary or unique, neither condition is considered adequate grounds for deviation from this policy. Suitable material-transfer agreements can be drawn up between the provider and the requester; if a reasonable request is turned down, the corresponding author will be held accountable. The consequence for continuing noncompliance will be refusal of Blood Advances to publish articles from the corresponding author for the following three years.

Disclosure of compound structure

Authors must provide the specific chemical structure(s) of synthetic compounds either in the manuscript or through a Web link to a publicly available source. For natural products, the chemical structure must be similarly provided if it is known. If it is not known, adequate information on the source and composition must be provided to identify the compound uniquely.

Deposition into public databases

Datasets must be accessible by reviewers and editors at the time of submission and must be publically available as of the date of publication, at which point Blood Advances requires that the following types of datasets be made available via community-endorsed platforms, such as those listed below. Accession numbers must be supplied parenthetically at a relevant location in text. As new technologies are developed, the journal reserves the right to request full dataset access as a condition of publication.

DNA/RNA gene sequences and high throughput mRNA, miRNA and other related datasets

Genbank or European Nucleotide Archive

DNA sequencing data, including traces for capillary electrophoresis and short reads for next-generation sequencing, deep sequencing data: NCBI trace and short-read archiveENA's Sequence Read ArchiveGEO, or ArrayExpress

mRNA gene expression microarrays and other high-throughput datasets including RNAseq, miRNA arrays, ChIP-chip arrays, CGH (comparative genomic hybridization), SNP arrays, protein arrays, SAGE, MPSS, and high-throughput quantitative sequence data: GEO or ArrayExpress.

Blood Advances supports the efforts of the Microarray Gene Expression Data Society to standardize the presentation of microarray and other similar data. Data must be MIAME-compliant, as described at the MGED web site specifying microarray standards.

Protein sequences


Proteomics data

PRIDE , PeptideAtlas , Tranche

Protein interaction data

IMEx consortium of databases

Chemical compound screening and assay data


HeLa Cell Whole Genome Sequence Data Policy

Blood Advances supports the policy on the access and research use of HeLa cell whole genome data.  The policy was developed as a result of an agreement between the NIH and Henrietta Lacks’ surviving family members and is outlined in the HeLa Genome Data Use Agreement, as well as the NIH Guide notices for researchers who submit HeLa data to the NIH and investigators who use these data (NIH NOT-OD-13-099  and NIH NOT-OD-14-080).

The NIH’s policy for HeLa cell whole genome data was designed as a solution to a very unique situation of an identified cell line and is not a precedent for submission and use of de-identified human genomic data.  

Under the policy, researchers who generate HeLa cell whole genome sequence data from DNA or RNA are expected to submit the data to the NIH database of Genotypes and Phenotypes (dbGaP).  Investigators who wish to use the dbGaP HeLa data for research purposes must request the data from the NIH and, if the use is found to be consistent with the HeLa Genome Data Use Agreement, access will be granted.  Researchers who submit HeLa data are also expected to follow the same access request process as secondary users of the data to ensure that all uses are consistent with the HeLa Genome Data Use Agreement.  Further, we ask researchers who publish their findings to include an acknowledgement of the contributions of Henrietta Lacks and her family. 

Although the NIH policy applies to NIH-funded investigators, we are encouraging non-NIH-funded investigators to adhere to this policy as well.  The investigators, regardless of funding source, who publish scientific findings involving the generation and/or use of HeLa cell whole genome sequence data, are encouraged to include a statement acknowledging the contributions of Henrietta Lacks and her family and affirming that the NIH has approved their use of these data (see the link to the acknowledgement statement above, provided by the NIH).

Clinical trial reporting and registry

Blood Advances welcomes submission of manuscripts reporting on clinical trials whether phase 1, 2, 3 or 4. Reports should include a full description of the study design, patient population, methodology and conduct, and statistical plan. In all cases, the report will undergo peer review and will be evaluated for technical merit, novelty, clinical and scientific impact, and other measures to determine suitability for publication.

As defined by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), a clinical trial is ‘any research project that prospectively assigns human subjects to intervention and comparison groups to study the cause-and-effect relationship between a medical intervention and a health outcome’.

Blood Advances follows the trial registration policy of the ICMJE and considers only trials that have been registered before submission, and before the onset of patient enrollment. Acceptable registries must be ICMJE-approved (see more information in the section below).

For authors reporting phase II and phase III randomized controlled trials it is recommended to consult the CONSORT Statement and Checklist to facilitate the complete and transparent reporting of trial findings. In addition, including a Patient Flow Diagram in the manuscript is recommended for randomized studies.

Registration number and name of the trial registry must be provided at the end of the article abstract.

In accordance with the guidelines published by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), Blood Advances requires, as a condition of consideration for publication, that all clinical trials be registered in any of the primary registers that participate in the WHO International Clinical Trial Registry Platform (ICTRP) or in (See full list here). Trials must be registered at or before the onset of patient enrollment.

In addition to accepting registration in any of the above five registries, Blood Advances will accept registration of clinical trials in any of the primary registers that participate in the WHO International Clinical Trial Registry Platform (ICTRP) or in EudraCT. Registration in a partner register only is insufficient.

The ICMJE and Blood Advances implement the WHO definition of clinical trials for all trials that began enrollment on or after July 1, 2008. This definition states that a clinical trial is "any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects on health outcomes."

Following ICMJE, Blood Advances will not consider results posted in the same clinical trials registry in which the primary registration resides to be previous publication if the results are presented in the form of a brief (< 500 words), structured abstract or table.

For more information, see the ICMJE Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals.

Guidelines for stem cell research

Research with embryonic stem cells should adhere to the guidelines established by the National Academy of Sciences, as published in the National Academy Press.

Submission of NIH-funded accepted manuscripts to PubMed Central

The American Society of Hematology (ASH) signed an agreement with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) that creates a straightforward way for authors to comply with NIH policy regarding public access to biomedical research. As a result of this agreement, Blood Advances authors who publish NIH-funded articles have no obligation to submit manuscripts to the NIH archive because Blood Advances will do this on their behalf.

To ensure that NIH-funded manuscripts are correctly identified during submission, we request that authors use full titles and/or full acronyms when referring to NIH funding. Please also note that the corresponding author is responsible for disclosing NIH funding for all coauthors.

Press embargo policy

Blood Advances is an open access publication, manuscripts that are accepted and published in Blood Advances are considered to be formally published on the date of the article’s appearance on the Blood Advances website. There is no press embargo of an article once it has been published. Any embargo will occur only upon an author’s request and only prior to publication.