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PLoS ONE logo.png
Abbreviated title(s) PLoS ONE
Discipline Multidisciplinary
Language English
Edited by Peter Binfield
Publication details
Publisher Public Library of Science (United States)
Publication history 2006–present
Frequency Articles are published upon acceptance
Open access Yes
ISSN 1932-6203

PLoS ONE is an open access, "online only", scientific journal from the Public Library of Science. It covers primary research from any discipline within science and medicine. All submissions go through a rigorous, internal and external pre-publication peer review but are not excluded on the basis of lack of perceived importance or adherence to a scientific field. The PLoS ONE online platform has post-publication user discussion and rating features.





PLoS ONE was launched in December 2006 as a beta version. It launched with Commenting and Note making functionality, and added the ability to rate articles in July 2007. In September 2007 the ability to leave "trackbacks" on articles was added. In August 2008 it moved from a weekly publication schedule to a daily one, publishing articles as soon as they became ready. In October 2008 PLoS ONE came out of "beta". Also in September 2009, as part of its "Article-Level Metrics" program, PLoS ONE made the full online usage data for every published article (HTML page views, PDF, and XML downloads) publicly available.


In 2006 the journal published 138 articles; in 2007 it published just over 1,200 articles; and in 2008 it published almost 2,800 articles, making it the largest open access journal in the world. In 2009, 4,406 articles were published, making PLoS ONE the third largest scientific journal in the world (by volume)[1].


The founding Managing Editor was Chris Surridge. He was succeeded by Peter Binfield in March 2008.

Publication concept

PLoS ONE is built on several conceptually different ideas compared to traditional peer-reviewed scientific publishing. According to Nature, the journal's aim is to "challenge academia's obsession with journal status and impact factors."[2] Being an online-only publication allows PLoS ONE to publish more papers than a print journal. It does not restrict itself to a specific scientific area in an effort to facilitate publication of research on topics outside, or between, traditional science categories.[3] In addition, it does not use the perceived importance of a paper as a criterion for acceptance or rejection. Instead, PLoS ONE only verifies whether experiments and data analysis were conducted rigorously and astutely and leaves it to the scientific community to ascertain importance, post publication, through debate and comment:[3]

Each submission will be assessed by a member of the PLoS ONE Editorial Board before publication. This pre-publication peer review will concentrate on technical rather than subjective concerns and may involve discussion with other members of the Editorial Board and/or the solicitation of formal reports from independent referees. If published, papers will be made available for community-based open peer review involving online annotation, discussion, and rating.[4 ]

Papers published in PLoS ONE can be of any length, contain full color throughout, and contain supplementary materials (such as multimedia files). The journal uses an editorial board of over 750 academics and in the two years since launch it made use of over 9,000 external peer reviewers. PLoS ONE publishes approximately 70 % of all submissions.[5]

Business model

As with all journals of the Public Library of Science, PLoS ONE is financed by charging authors a publication fee. As of July 2008, PLoS ONE charges authors $1,300 to publish an article. It will waive the fee for authors who do not have sufficient funds.[6] The "author-pays" model allows PLoS journals to provide all articles to everybody for free (open access) immediately after publication. Reuse of articles is subject to a Creative Commons Attribution License, version 2.5.[7]

Community recognition

In September 2009, PLoS ONE received the Publishing Innovation Award of the Association for Learned and Professional Society Publishers[8]. The award is given in recognition of a "truly innovative approach to any aspect of publication as adjudged from originality and innovative qualities, together with utility, benefit to the community and long term prospects".

Citations and post-publication peer evaluation

Scopus Journal Analyzer reports a "trend line" (total citations to all articles ever published received in a year divided by total number of articles published in that year) value of 3.33 for PLoS ONE for the year 2009 (up to date September 17, 2009).[9] Every month, a number of PLoS ONE articles are evaluated at the Faculty of 1000 Biology[10] making it the fourth most frequently evaluated multi-disciplinary journal after Nature (journal), Science (journal), and PNAS.

Abstracting and indexing

PLoS ONE articles are indexed in:,[11][4 ]

See also


External links


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