- Scope of the Journal
- Manuscript Types
- ACS Publishing Center
- Manuscript Preparation
- Preparing for Submission
- Production And Publication
Scope of the Journal
The Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, published by the American Chemical Society on behalf of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal that covers all aspects of mass spectrometry, including fields of scientific inquiry in which mass spectrometry can play a role, including both applications and fundamentals. These fields include the chemical, biological, health, environmental and forensic sciences, omics sciences such as proteomics and metabolomics, as well as physics and geology.
The journal publishes papers on both fundamentals and applications of mass spectrometry, in addition to new instrumentation and methods development.
Papers that report on an application should have as a principal focus the use of a new mass spectrometry tool or approach to solve a qualitative or quantitative problem. Application subjects include, but are not limited to, development or validation of new methodology, proteomics, metabolomics, lipidomics and other 'omics related research, structural elucidation, biopolymer sequencing, automation/implementation of high throughput methods, and environmental and forensic measurements. Papers describing computer applications, new algorithms and software will also be considered.
Fundamental subjects include instrumentation principles, design, and demonstration, structures and chemical properties of gas-phase ions, studies of thermodynamic properties, ion spectroscopy, chemical kinetics, mechanisms of ionization, theories of ion fragmentation, cluster ions, and potential energy surfaces.
In addition to full papers, the journal offers Communications, Notes, Critical Insights, Letters, Methods/Protocols, and Perspectives. See author guidelines for more information on the journal, the full list of manuscript types, and specifics on word count requirements.
Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry will follow standard policies ACS Publications has in place to ensure streamlined and robust practices and a positive author experience (e.g., Ethical Guidelines, Copyright & Permissions, ACS Policy on Theses and Dissertations, etc.).
Correspondence to the Editor-in-Chief should be addressed to:
Vicki Wysocki, Editor-in-Chief, Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry
Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, The Ohio State University
279 Biomedical Research Tower, 460 W 12th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210
Article: Fundamental subjects include, but are not restricted to, instrumentation principles, design, and demonstration, structures and chemical properties of gas-phase ions, studies of thermodynamic properties, ion spectroscopy, chemical kinetics, mechanisms of ionization, theories of ion fragmentation, cluster ions, potential energy surfaces, and modeling.
Papers that report on an application should have as a principal focus the use of mass spectrometry to solve a qualitative or quantitative problem. Application subjects include, but are not limited to, structural elucidation, biopolymer sequencing, development or validation of new methodology, proteomics and other 'omics related research, and environmental and forensic measurements. Papers describing development of new software and its applications will be considered, but details and compilations of programs will not be published. A report of a routine application of mass spectrometry is likely to be better suited to a journal specializing in the subject of the application.
Short Communications and Notes: Short Communications are brief descriptions of new and significant research. Purposes include establishing priority in a new area, announcing an important discovery or development, inter alia. Communications must contain some experimental or theoretical justification for the ideas being presented. It is usually expected that a Communication will be followed by a full Article. Notes are brief descriptions of technical advances in sample handling, instrumentation, data processing, interpretation of spectra, etc., that will be of interest to some segment of the mass spectrometry community. Short Communications will be published in separate sections at the beginning of each issue. Notes will be published at the end of an issue. Both will, insofar as possible, receive expedited handling. They may contain up to three single-column figures or tables (up to one page, total) and up to 2,300 words, including references and abstract. Space allocated to figures and tables may be replaced by text (~250 words per figure or table). Submissions exceeding these guidelines will be treated as Regular Articles.
Letters to the Editor should be brief and may be edited for conciseness and clarity. Note that Letters to the Editor that comment on research findings previously published in this journal will be forwarded to the original author, who may rebut the Letter to the Editor. If the original authors respond to the Letter to the Editor, both pieces are often scheduled to be published simultaneously. Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry will not accept Letters to the Editor that comment on research published elsewhere.
Perspectives: Perspectives summarize a body of research that is reasonably completed such that general conclusions can be drawn. The subject matter is to be of significant interest to the field of mass spectrometry. These articles may either feature the work of a single author or a team of researchers, focus on recent results of a timely subject, or bring perspective to historically important developments. This category may also include articles that describe a research philosophy, identify areas that need emphasis, or represent new directions. Although Perspectives will typically be invited by the editor, proposals may be submitted in advance of preparing the article to firstname.lastname@example.org. The length of Perspectives is to be negotiated with the editor.
Critical Insight: These articles are invited submissions, and those who wish to suggest a topic should contact Dr. Erin Baker (email@example.com). These feature articles are designed to be opinion-based descriptions of a current, ideally controversial or thought-provoking, area. They are generally restricted to 4,000 words or fewer (excluding tables and figure captions but including references), with no more than six single-column figures or tables (1.5 pages, total). Space allocated to figures and tables may be replaced by text (~250 words per figure or table). However, the length of a Critical Insight can be negotiated with the editor.
Tutorial: Tutorials are articles that provide basic instructions on mass spectrometry and related techniques, with the aim of teaching the reader how to accomplish a specific application. Tutorials are narrower in scope than Reviews or Perspectives but must still cover the relevant background of the topic. Tutorials cover timely topics but do not necessarily present new data. Authors interested in contributing Tutorials are encouraged to reach out to the Editor-in-Chief (firstname.lastname@example.org) for pre-submission feedback.
ACS Publishing Center
While this document will provide basic information on how to prepare and submit the manuscript as well as other critical information about publishing, we also encourage authors to visit the ACS Publishing Center for additional information on everything that is needed to prepare (and review) manuscripts for ACS journals and partner journals, such as
- Mastering the Art of Scientific Publication, which shares editor tips about a variety of topics including making your paper scientifically effective, preparing excellent graphics, and writing cover letters.
- Resources on how to prepare and submit a manuscript to ACS Paragon Plus, ACS Publications’ manuscript submission and peer review environment, including details on selecting the applicable Journal Publishing Agreement.
- Sharing your research with the public through the ACS Publications open access program.
- ACS Reviewer Lab, a free online course covering best practices for peer review and related ethical considerations.
- ACS Author Lab, a free online course that empowers authors to prepare and submit strong manuscripts, avoiding errors that could lead to delays in the publication process.
- ACS Inclusivity Style Guide, a guide that helps researchers communicate in ways that recognize and respect diversity in all its forms.
Submit with Fast Format
All ACS journals and partner journals have simplified their formatting requirements in favor of a streamlined and standardized format for an initial manuscript submission. Read more about the requirements and the benefits these serves authors and reviewers here.
Manuscripts submitted for initial consideration must adhere to these standards:
- Submissions must be complete with clearly identified standard sections used to report original research, free of annotations or highlights, and include all numbered and labeled components.
- Figures, charts, tables, schemes, and equations should be embedded in the text at the point of relevance. Separate graphics can be supplied later at revision, if necessary.
- When required by a journal's structure or length limitations, manuscript templates should be used.
- References can be provided in any style, but they must be complete, including titles. For information about the required components of different reference types, please refer to the ACS Style Quick Guide.
- Supporting Information must be submitted as a separate file(s).
Document Templates and Format
The templates facilitate the peer review process by allowing authors to place artwork and tables close to the point where they are discussed within the text. Learn more about document templates here.
General information on the preparation of manuscripts may also be found in the ACS Guide to Scholarly Communication.
Acceptable Software, File Designations, and TeX/LaTeX
See the list of Acceptable Software and appropriate File Designations to be sure your file types are compatible with ACS Paragon Plus. Information for manuscripts generated from TeX/LaTeX is also available.
A cover letter must accompany every manuscript submission. During the submission process, you may type it or paste it into the submission system, or you may attach it as a file.
A letter should contain the following elements:
- the full manuscript title;
- the name of the corresponding author and that person’s complete contact information (mailing address, phone, fax, and email);
- the name(s) of any other author(s);
- a statement of why the paper is appropriate for Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry;
- a description of any Supporting Information for Publication and/or for Review Only Material;
- four or more individuals competent to review the manuscript (and their contact information);
- If an initial draft of the manuscript has been deposited on a recognized preprint server such as ChemRxiv, bioRxiv, arXiv, please include a link to the preprint, and as appropriate, state how the manuscript has been adjusted/updated between deposition and submission; and,
- any other related or prior work that should be disclosed to the Editor in advance.
Additionally, authors should note any length issues, whether the manuscript was discussed with an Editor before submission, and other issues important for the review process.
Manuscript Text Components
Title Page: Give the paper as short a title as possible. Submit also a running title of no more than 45 characters (including spaces). List, at the bottom of the page, "Address reprint requests to . . . " followed by the name, exact postal address with zip code, telephone number, and e-mail address of the author to whom communications, proofs, and requests for reprints should be sent.
Abstract: Provide an abstract no longer than 250 words for an Article, Short Communication, Note, Perspective, and Critical Insight. An abstract is not required for a Letter to the Editor.
Main Body Text: Organize the text as Introduction, Experimental or Methods, Theory (if applicable), Results and Discussion, and Conclusions. Conclusions should not be a repetition of the abstract or a summary of the paper.
In the experimental section of the manuscript, all special safety considerations should be described in sufficient detail so that appropriate safety measures can be taken by those repeating the experiments (see below).
Refer to illustrations and tables in numerical order in the text.
Spell out, or define in parentheses, all abbreviations, even if they are commonly employed, the first time they are used in the text. Non-standard abbreviations should be used sparingly and must be defined at their first appearance.
Use the nomenclature recommended by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry for chemical compounds. For nomenclature of mass spectrometry, see the IUPAC rules (Todd, Journal of Pure Applied Chemistry, 1991, 63, 1541-1566). Additional suggestions for definition and style can be found in Standard Definitions of Terms Relating to Mass Spectrometry, by Price, Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, 1991, 2, 336-346 and in Sparkman, O.D., Mass Spec Desk Reference, 2nd Ed., Global View Publishing, Pittsburgh, PA, 2006.
Give all measurements and weights in SI units, using standard abbreviations (see IUPAC Quantities, Units and Symbols in Physical Chemistry). Daltons (Da) or mass units (u) may be used, but amu should not be used.
Consult articles in recent issues of the Journal for the recommended style for headings and subheadings.
Number equations (both chemical and mathematical) consecutively with a single system of Arabic numerals in parentheses placed at the right-hand side of each equation. Add spaces before and after mathematical symbols (e.g., +, -, =) to distinguish some of them from chemical bonds. Number chemical structures consecutively with boldface, Arabic numerals. Designate schemes showing fragmentation pathways, chemical reactions, etc. by consecutive capital Roman numerals (schemes usually do not have titles or captions); the individual pathways within schemes can be distinguished (if necessary) with lower-case letters placed on the arrows.
Acknowledgments: Authors may acknowledge technical assistance, gifts, the source of special materials, financial support, meeting presentation information, and the auspices under which the work was done, including permission to publish. During manuscript submission, the submitting author is asked to select funding sources from the list of agencies included in the FundRef Registry.
Statements about author contributions to the work or equal contributions of work should be included as a separate statement.
References: Identify references in the text by superscripted numerals. Cite personal communications, manuscripts in preparation, and other unpublished data in the text in parentheses or as footnotes for that page. Number references consecutively in the order in which they are mentioned in the text.
The accuracy and completeness of the references are the authors’ responsibility. Use Chemical Abstracts Service Source Index abbreviations for journal names (http://cassi.cas.org/search.jsp) and provide all authorsʻ names, article title, publication year, volume, and page number (inclusive pagination is recommended). Chemical abstracts reference information for foreign publications that are not readily available should also be supplied.
Examples of the reference format:
- Doroshenko, V. M., Cotter, R. J.: Ideal Velocity Focusing in a Reflectron Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometer. J. Am. Soc. Mass Spectrom. 10, 992-999 (1999)
- Mahler, H. R., Cordes, E. H.: Biological Chemistry (2nd ed.). Harper and Row, New York (1971)
- Anderegg, R. J.: Using Deuterium Exchange and Mass Spectrometry to Study Protein Structure. In: Burlingame, A. L., Carr, S. A. (eds.) Mass Spectrometry in the Biological Sciences, p. 85. Humana Press, Totowa, NJ, (1996)
Figures and Illustrations: The journal prefers that the initial submission has figures, tables, and schemes embedded in the text for ease in review. Arabic numerals should be used in numbering tables and figures. All tables should have short, descriptive titles, but schemes do not usually require a title. Restrict the number of figures for a full article to eight, and to three for a communication or note (seek permission from the editor if you require a greater number of figures). Consider carefully whether a figure is essential and avoid submitting those that contain principally "white space." Examples are figures that contain ESI mass spectra showing the molecular ion(s) or demonstrating signal-to-noise ratio or spectra that show the appearance and disappearance of peaks. These ideas can often be communicated with a sentence in the text, or the data can be presented in a table. Remove "white space" to accentuate the object if the purpose of the figure is, for example, to show mass resolving power or peak shape rather than submitting a broad-range spectrum.
This information is provided to the reviewers during the peer-review process (for Review Only) and is available to readers of the published work (for Publication). Supporting Information must be submitted at the same time as the manuscript. See the list of Acceptable Software by File Designation and confirm that your Supporting Information is viewable.
If the manuscript is accompanied by any supporting information files for publication, these files will be made available free of charge to readers. A brief, nonsentence description of the actual contents of each file, including the file type extension, is required. This description should be labeled Supporting Information and should appear before the Acknowledgement and Reference sections. Examples of sufficient and insufficient descriptions are as follows:
Examples of sufficient descriptions: “Supporting Information: 1H NMR spectra for all compounds (PDF)” or “Additional experimental details, materials, and methods, including photographs of experimental setup (DOC)”.
Examples of insufficient descriptions: “Supporting Information: Figures S1-S3” or “Additional figures as mentioned in the text”.
When including supporting information for review only, include copies of references that are unpublished or in-press. These files are available only to editors and reviewers.
Research Data Policy
All ACS journals strongly encourage authors to make the research data underlying their articles publicly available at the time of publication.
Research data is defined as materials and information used in the experiments that enable the validation of the conclusions drawn in the article, including primary data produced by the authors for the study being reported, secondary data reused or analyzed by the authors for the study, and any other materials necessary to reproduce or replicate the results.
The ACS Research Data Policy provides additional information on Data Availability Statements, Data Citation, and Data Repositories.
The Use of High Resolution Mass Spectral Data for Formula Confirmation: For publication of exact- mass data that are used to confirm identities of synthetic and natural products, report the uncertainty in the accurate-mass measurement used for formula verification along with the result. The acceptable uncertainty in a measurement by any analytical method must be adequate for the intended use of the data.
Evaluate the uncertainty of accurate mass measurement by any statistically valid method. Determine, for example, the precision and accuracy of replicate measurements or evaluate the performance characteristics of the mass spectrometer (see, for example, Sack, T. M., Lapp, R. L., Gross, M. L., and Kimble, B. J. Int. J. Mass Spectrom. Ion Proc. 1984, 61, 191-213).
Consider all candidates fitting the experimentally determined value and its reported uncertainty when the result of accurate mass measurement is used for formula confirmation. Do not set fixed acceptable error limits for exact mass measurement. Consider the following when using accurate mass data.
When valence rules and candidate compositions encompassing C0-100, H3-74, O0-4, and N0-4 are considered at nominal parent m/z of 118, there are no candidate formulae within 34 ppm of each other. When the ion is of m/z 750.4 and the formulae are in the range C0-100, H25-110, O0-15, and N0-15, there are 626 candidate formulae that are possible within 5 ppm. Thus, for a measurement at m/z 118, an error of only 34 ppm uniquely defines a particular formula, whereas at m/z 750, an error (and precision) of 0.018 ppm would be required to eliminate all extraneous possibilities.
Language and Editing Services
A well-written paper helps share your results most clearly. ACS Publications’ English Editing Service is designed to help scientists communicate their research effectively. Our subject-matter expert editors will edit your manuscript for grammar, spelling, and other language errors so your ideas are presented at their best.
The quality of illustrations in ACS journals and partner journals depends on the quality of the original files provided by the authors. Figures are not modified or enhanced by journal production staff. All graphics must be prepared and submitted in digital format.
Graphics should be inserted into the main body whenever possible. Please see Appendix 2 for additional information.
Any graphic (figure chart, scheme, or equation) that has appeared in an earlier publication should include a credit line citing the original source. Authors are responsible for obtaining written permission to re-use this material.
Figure and Illustration Services
The impact of your research is not limited to what you can express with words. Tables and figures such as graphs, photographs, illustrations, diagrams, and other visuals can play a significant role in effectively communicating your findings. Our Artwork Editing and Graphical Abstract services generate publication-ready figures and Table of Contents (TOC) graphics that conform to your chosen journal’s specifications. For figures, this includes changes to file type, resolution, color space, font, scale, line weights, and layout (to improve readability and professional appearance). For TOC graphics, our illustrators can work with a rough sketch or concept or help extract the key findings of your manuscript directly for use as a visual summary of your paper.
Preparing for Submission
Manuscripts, graphics, supporting information, and required forms, as well as manuscript revisions, must all be submitted in digital format through ACS Paragon Plus, which requires an ACS ID to log in. Registering for an ACS ID is fast, free, and does not require an ACS membership. Please refer to Appendix 1 for additional information on preparing your submission
Prior Publication Policy
Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry considers for publication original work that has not been previously published and is not under consideration for publication elsewhere. Related work under consideration for publication in any medium must be cited in the manuscript and the Editor informed at the time of submission. In addition, an author must inform the Editor of prior dissemination of the content in print or electronic formats in the cover letter. Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry authors are allowed to deposit an initial draft of their manuscript on a recognized preprint server such as ChemRxiv, bioRxiv, arXiv, or the applicable repository for their discipline prior to submission. Please note any use of a preprint server in the cover letter and include a link to the preprint, and as appropriate, state how the manuscript has been adjusted/updated between deposition and submission. Upon publication in the Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, authors are advised to add a link from the preprint to the published paper via the Digital Object Identifier (DOI). ChemRxiv and bioRxiv add this link for authors automatically after publication. Electronic posting of conference presentations or posters secured by subscription or institutional logins are not considered prior publication works.
For further details, contact the Editorial Office.
Authors must submit the following material as separate files:
- Manuscript File (as a single .doc or .docx file with figures, tables, and captions);
- cover letter;
- Supporting Information for Publication, if applicable; and
- any additional materials for review, if needed (submit as Supporting Information for Review Only).
A Manuscript PDF File is optional. If uploaded, this file will be used as the PDF proof during the peer review process. Authors must view and approve the PDF version of their manuscript prior to formal submission to the Editor.
Deadline for Manuscript Revisions
Resubmit manuscripts for which revisions were requested within one month of receipt of the reviews. Manuscripts received after this period may be regarded as new submissions and may be subject to re- review to ensure currency.
Submitted manuscripts should not be published or under consideration elsewhere and may be examined using software to detect duplication of already published material.
Related Unpublished Work
Submit with the manuscript copies of any articles describing work that is related and that is submitted to or in press in any journal. These documents should be submitted as "Supporting Information for Review Only" within ACS Paragon Plus.
Reject with Editorial Review
The Editors identify submissions that in their expert opinions would not fare well during the review process; these manuscripts are rejected without additional external reviewers. Oftentimes, more than one Editor will be consulted during this initial screening. This shortens the time to decision and ensures a manageable workload for reviewers.
The Editorial Decision
Reviewers evaluate the manuscript on the basis of originality, technical quality, clarity of presentation, and importance to the field. The Editors evaluate the reviewers’ arguments in the context of the scope and aims of the journal and make the final decision on each manuscript. The possible decisions include: accept; revise to address the concerns of the reviewers before the editors make a final decision; reject but consider a resubmission if significant additional work is completed; or decline on the grounds of major technical or interpretational flaws, insufficient advance, or lack of novelty and interest.
In cases when reviewers make different or conflicting recommendations, the Editors may request additional information from the reviewers, consult other experts, and/or ask the authors to clarify sections in question. Some manuscripts that are declined may be considered upon resubmission if significant additional work is completed, but authors are required to let the Editor know that the work is being resubmitted for reconsideration.
Reviewers may be asked to review subsequent versions of the manuscript, especially if new data have been added to the paper, to evaluate whether the authors have addressed the scientific concerns. In such cases, blind copies of all reviewers’ comments are normally sent to the reviewers. The Editors will expedite any additional rounds of reviews to ensure timely publication.
Any appeals should be addressed to the Editor who handled the manuscript and should include a concise statement of the specific reason for appeal.
The Editors strongly disapprove of any attempts by authors to determine the identity of reviewers or to confront potential reviewers. The editorial policy of this journal is neither to confirm nor to deny any speculation about the identities of our reviewers. Authors whose manuscripts are published in Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry are expected to review manuscripts submitted by other researchers from time to time. Information for Reviewers is published separately.
Providing Potential Reviewer Names
Please suggest 4 or more reviewers. Authors are encouraged to avoid suggesting reviewers from the authors’ institutions. Do not suggest reviewers who may have a real or perceived conflict of interest. Whenever possible, suggest academic email addresses rather than personal email addresses.
If your submission is declined for publication by this journal, the editors might deem your work to be better suited for another ACS Publications journal or partner journal and suggest that the authors consider transferring the submission. Manuscript Transfer simplifies and shortens the process of submitting to another ACS journal or partner journal, as all the coauthors, suggested reviewers, manuscript files, and responses to submission questions are copied by ACS Paragon Plus to the new draft submission. Authors are free to accept or decline the transfer offer.
Note that each journal is editorially independent. Transferring a manuscript is not a guarantee that the manuscript will be accepted, as the final publication decision will belong to the editor of the next journal.
PRODUCTION AND PUBLICATION
Proofs via ACS Direct Correct
Correction of the galley proofs is the responsibility of the Corresponding Author. The Corresponding Author of an accepted manuscript will receive e-mail notification and complete instructions when page proofs are available for review via ACS Direct Correct. Extensive or important changes on page proofs, including changes to the title or list of authors, are subject to review by the editor.
It is the responsibility of the Corresponding Author to ensure that all authors listed on the manuscript agree with the changes made on the proofs. Galley proofs should be returned within 48 hours in order to ensure timely publication of the manuscript.
Publication Date and Patent Dates
Accepted manuscripts will be published on the ACS Publications Web site as soon as page proofs are corrected and all author concerns are resolved. The first date on which the document is published on the Web is considered the publication date.
Publication of manuscripts on the Web may occur weeks in advance of the cover date of the issue of publication. Authors should take this into account when planning their patent and intellectual property activities related to a document and should ensure that all patent information is available at the time of first publication, whether ASAP or issue publication.
All articles published ahead of print receive a unique Digital Object Identifier (DOI) number, which is used to cite the manuscript before and after the paper appears in an issue. Additionally, any supplemental information submitted along with the manuscript will automatically be assigned a DOI and hosted on Figshare to promote open data discoverability and use of your research outputs.
Manuscripts will be published on the “ASAP Articles” page on the web as soon as page proofs are corrected and all author concerns are resolved. ASAP publication usually occurs within a few working days of receipt of page proof corrections, which can be several weeks in advance of the cover date of the issue.
The American Chemical Society follows guidance from the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) when considering any ethical concerns regarding a published article, Retractions, and Expressions of Concern.
Additions and Corrections
Additions and Corrections may be requested by the author(s) or initiated by the Editor to address important issues or correct errors and omissions of consequence that arise after publication of an article. All Additions and Corrections are subject to approval by the Editor, and should bring new and directly relevant information and corrections that fix scientific facts. Minor corrections and additions will not be published. Readers who detect errors of consequence in the work of others should contact the corresponding author of that work.
Additions and Corrections must be submitted as new manuscripts via ACS Paragon Plus by the Corresponding Author for publication in the “Addition/Correction” section of the Journal. The corresponding author should obtain approval from all coauthors prior to submitting or provide evidence that such approval has been solicited. The manuscript should include the original article title and author list, citation including DOI, and details of the correction.
Articles may be retracted for scientific or ethical reasons and may be requested by the article author(s) or by the journal Editor(s), but are ultimately published at the discretion of the Editor. Articles that contain seriously flawed or erroneous data such that their findings and conclusions cannot be relied upon may be retracted in order to correct the scientific record. When an article is retracted, a notice of Retraction will be published containing information about the reason for the Retraction. The originally published article will remain online except in extraordinary circumstances (e.g. where deemed legally necessary, or if the availability of the published content poses public health risks).
Expressions of Concern
Expressions of Concern may be issued at the discretion of the Editor if:
- there is inconclusive evidence of research or publication misconduct by the authors;
- there is evidence that the findings are unreliable but the authors’ institution will not investigate the case;
- an investigation into alleged misconduct related to the publication either has not been, or would not be, fair and impartial or conclusive;
- an investigation is underway but a judgment will not be available for a considerable time.
Upon completion of any related investigation, and when a final determination is made about the outcome of the article, the Expression of Concern may be replaced with a Retraction notice or Correction.
Sharing Your Published Article
At ACS Publications, we know it is important for you to be able to share your peer reviewed, published work with colleagues in the global community of scientists. As sharing on sites known as scholarly collaboration networks (SCNs) is becoming increasingly prevalent in today’s scholarly research ecosystem, we would like to remind you of the many ways in which you, a valued ACS author, can share your published work.
Publishing open access makes it easy to share your work with friends, colleagues, and family members. In addition, ACS Publications makes it easy to share your newly published research with ACS Articles on Request (see below). Don’t forget to promote your research and related data on social media, at conferences, and through scholarly communication networks. Increase the impact of your research using the following resources: Altmetrics, Figshare, ACS Certified Deposit
When your article is published in an ACS journal or partner journal, corresponding authors are provided with a link that offers up to 50 free digital prints of the final published work. This link is valid for the first 12 months following online publication, and can be shared via email or an author’s website. After one year, the access restrictions to your article will be lifted, and you can share the Articles on Request URL on social media and other channels. To access all your Articles on Request links, log in to your ACS Publishing Center account and visit the “My Published Manuscripts” page.
Appendix 1: PREPARING FOR SUBMISSION
We’ve developed ACS’ publishing and editorial policies in consultation with the research communities that we serve, including authors and librarians. Browse our policies below to learn more.
ACS editors have provided Ethical Guidelines for persons engaged in the publication of chemical research—specifically, for editors, authors, and reviewers. Each journal also has a specific policy on prior publication.
As a U.S.-based non-profit organization, the American Chemical Society (ACS) is required to comply with U.S. sanctions laws and regulations administered by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). While these laws and regulations permit U.S.-based publishers like ACS to engage in publishing-related activities with authors located in sanctioned regions in many cases, ACS may be prohibited under U.S. law from engaging in publishing-related activities in some cases, including, but not limited to, instances where an author or the institution with which an author is affiliated is located in a particular sanctioned region or has been designated by OFAC as a Specially Designated National (SDN) pursuant to certain U.S. sanctions programs. ACS reserves the right to refrain from engaging in any publishing-related activities that ACS determines in its sole discretion may be in violation of U.S. law.
Authors must emphasize any unexpected, new, and/or significant hazards or risks associated with the reported work. This information should be in the Experimental Section of a full article and included in the main text of a letter. Statement examples can be found in the Safety Statement Style Sheet and additional information on communicating safety information from the ACS Guide to Scholarly Communication is freely available here.
Conflict of Interest Disclosure
A statement describing any financial conflicts of interest or lack thereof is published in each ACS journal and partner journal article.
During the submission process, the Corresponding Author must provide a statement on behalf of all authors of the manuscript, describing all potential sources of bias, including affiliations, funding sources, and financial or management relationships, that may constitute conflicts of interest. If the manuscript is accepted, the statement will be published in the final article.
If the manuscript is accepted and no conflict of interest has been declared, the following statement will be published in the final article: “The authors declare no competing financial interest.”
In publishing only original research, ACS is committed to deterring plagiarism, including self-plagiarism. ACS Publications uses CrossCheck's iThenticate software to screen submitted manuscripts for similarity to published material. Note that your manuscript may be screened during the submission process.
Further information about plagiarism can be found in Part B of the Ethical Guidelines to Publication of Chemical Research. See also the press release regarding ACS' participation in the CrossCheck initiative.
Authorship, Author List, and Coauthor Notification
Authors are required to obtain the consent of all their coauthors prior to submitting a manuscript. The submitting author accepts the responsibility of notifying all coauthors that the manuscript is being submitted.
During manuscript submission, the submitting author must provide contact information (full name, email address, institutional affiliation, and mailing address) for all of the coauthors. Because all of the author names are automatically imported into the electronic Journal Publishing Agreement, the names must be entered into ACS Paragon Plus. (Note that coauthors are not required to register in ACS Paragon Plus.) Author affiliation should reflect where the work was completed, even if the author has since left that institution. Authors may include a note with a current address if their institution has changed since the work was completed.
To expedite the processing of your manuscript, please format your author and affiliation information according the guidelines in this link: https://pubsapp.acs.org/paragonplus/submission/author-address-information.pdf.
Criteria for authorship can be found in Part B of the Ethical Guidelines to Publication of Chemical Research. Artificial intelligence (AI) tools do not qualify for authorship. The use of AI tools for text or image generation should be disclosed in the manuscript within the Acknowledgment section with a description of when and how the tools were used. For more substantial use cases or descriptions of AI tool use, authors should provide full details within the Methods or other appropriate section of the manuscript.
If any change in authorship is necessary after a manuscript has been submitted, confirmation is required that all of the authors (including those being added or removed) have been notified and have agreed to the change. To provide this confirmation, authors are asked to complete and sign an authorship change form and provide the completed form to the appropriate editorial office.
Authors with a single name: If you, or any of your coauthors, have only one name, please follow these steps for proper submission to ACS Paragon Plus:
- First (Given) Name Field: Enter an asterisk (*) into the "First (Given) Name" field.
- Last (Family) Name Field: Enter your single name into the "Last (Family) Name" field.
If your paper is accepted, the asterisk (*) will be removed from the published version of the paper.
Patent Activities and Intellectual Property
Authors are responsible for ensuring that all patent activities and intellectual property issues are satisfactorily resolved prior to first publication (ASAP or in issue). Acceptance and publication will not be delayed for pending or unresolved issues of this nature.
Open Researcher and Contributor ID (ORCID)
Authors submitting manuscript revisions are required to provide their own personal, validated ORCID iD before completing the submission, if an ORCID iD is not already associated with their ACS Paragon Plus user profiles. This ID may be provided during original manuscript submission or when submitting the manuscript revision. All authors are strongly encouraged to register for an ORCID iD, a unique researcher identifier. The ORCID iD will be displayed in the published article for any author on a manuscript who has a validated ORCID iD associated with ACS when the manuscript is accepted.
ORCID iDs should not be typed into the manuscript. ACS publishes only those ORCID iDs that have been properly verified and linked before the manuscript is accepted. After your ORCID iD is linked, it will be displayed automatically in all subsequently accepted manuscripts for any/all ACS journals. We do not publish ORCID iDs provided during proof review or via other communications after a manuscript is accepted for publication.
With an ORCID iD, you can create a profile of your research activities to distinguish yourself from other researchers with similar names, and make it easier for your colleagues to find your publications. If you do not yet have an ORCID iD, or you wish to associate your existing ORCID iD with your ACS Paragon Plus account, you may do so by clicking on “Edit Your Profile” from your ACS Paragon Plus account homepage and following the ORCID-related links. Learn more at www.orcid.org.
Copyright and Permissions
To obtain forms and guidelines for completing the Journal Publishing Agreement or obtaining permissions from copyright owners, and to explore a Copyright Learning Module for chemists, click here.
Funder Reporting Requirement
Authors are required to report funding sources and grant/award numbers. Enter ALL sources of funding for ALL authors in BOTH the Funder Registry Tool in ACS Paragon Plus and in your manuscript to meet this requirement.
Open Access Compliance
ACS offers options by which authors can fulfill the requirements for open access and deposition into repositories for funded research. Visit our ACS Open Science site to see how to fulfill requirements for specific funders and to find out if you are eligible to publish under a Read + Publish agreement between ACS and your institution. You can also find out more about Open Access Compliance and ACS Open Science initiatives.
Diversity and Inclusion Statement
During manuscript submission, ACS journal authors have the option to submit a statement sharing information related to diversity and inclusion that is relevant for their paper. If supplying a diversity and inclusion statement, the corresponding author must provide this on behalf of all authors of the manuscript during the submission process. These statements include but are not limited to analysis of citation diversity and acknowledgment of indigenous land on which research was conducted. Statements expressing political beliefs are not permitted and may be removed by the journal office. All statements are subject to final review by the Editor.
- Citation Diversity Statement:The citation diversity statement should appear in the Acknowledgements section of the manuscript. ACS recommends including the following: (1) the importance of citation diversity, (2) the proportion of citations by gender and race/ethnicity for the first and last authors, (3) the method used to determine those proportions and its limitations, and (4) steps taken to by the authors to improve citation diversity in the article. We recognize that one limitation of the current methods is that it cannot account for intersex, non-binary, and transgender people, or Indigenous and mixed-race authors. (Adapted from BMES/Springer Guidelines)
- Land acknowledgment:The land acknowledgment statement should appear in the Acknowledgements section of the manuscript. The statement should link to the institutions’ formal land acknowledgments on which the research took place, if possible. Further guidance for creating these statements can be found here: https://nativegov.org/news/a-guide-to-indigenous-land-acknowledgment/.
Appendix 2: Preparing Graphics
Digital graphics pasted into manuscripts should have the following minimum resolutions:
- Black and white line art, 1200 dpi
- Grayscale art, 600 dpi
- Color art, 300 dpi
Graphics must fit a one- or two-column format. Single-column graphics can be sized up to 240 points wide (3.33 in.) and double-column graphics must be sized between 300 and 504 points (4.167 in. and 7 in.). The maximum depth for all graphics is 660 points (9.167 in.) including the caption (allow 12 pts. For each line of caption text). Lettering should be no smaller than 4.5 points in the final published format. The text should be legible when the graphic is viewed full-size. Helvetica or Arial fonts work well for lettering. Lines should be no thinner than 0.5 point.
Color may be used to enhance the clarity of complex structures, figures, spectra, and schemes, etc., and color reproduction of graphics is provided at no additional cost to the author. Graphics intended to appear in black and white or grayscale should not be submitted in color.
Type of Graphics
Table of Contents (TOC)/Abstract Graphic
Consult the Guidelines for Table of Contents/Abstract Graphics for specifications.
Our team of subject-matter experts and graphical designers can also help generate a compelling TOC graphic to convey your key findings. Learn more about our Graphical Abstract service.
A caption giving the figure number and a brief description must be included below each figure. The caption should be understandable without reference to the text. It is preferable to place any key to symbols used in the artwork itself, not in the caption. Ensure that any symbols and abbreviations used in the text agree with those in the artwork.
Charts (groups of structures that do not show reactions) may have a brief caption describing their contents.
Each table must have a brief (one phrase or sentence) title that describes the contents. The title should be understandable without reference to the text. Details should be put in footnotes, not in the title. Tables should be used when the data cannot be presented clearly in the narrative, when many numbers must be presented, or when more meaningful inter-relationships can be conveyed by the tabular format. Tables should supplement, not duplicate, information presented in the text and figures. Tables should be simple and concise.
Each scheme (sequences of reactions) may have a brief caption describing its contents.
Chemical structures should be produced with the use of a drawing program such as ChemDraw.
The Editorial Office for the Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry selects papers to be featured on the front cover. Additional details on these requirements will be provided by the Editorial Office if selected. If your art is selected for front cover, ACS will send you information about how to request one complimentary 18” by 24” printed poster featuring your work.
Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry also offers authors a great way to promote their work through Supplementary Covers. Submit your cover idea, artwork, and caption when submitting your manuscript revision in ACS Paragon Plus. If your article is accepted for publication, your suggestion may be selected for use on one of the journal’s supplementary covers.
Web Enhanced Objects (WEO)
The Web editions of ACS journals allow readers to view multimedia attachments such as animations and movies that complement understanding of the research being reported.
WEOs should be uploaded in ACS Paragon Plus with ‘Web Enhanced Object’ selected as the file designation. Consult the list of compatible WEO formats.