- The journal adopts a double blind peer review process. That means the manuscript is anonymised such that the authors and reviewers are unknown to each other.
- Upon submission of a manuscript through the journal online manuscript processing/peer review portal, it is assigned a unique manuscript ID number and the corresponding author is notified through email within 1-3 working days after submission.
- Initial checks are conducted on the manuscript for compliance directives with the journal style in terms of fulfilling the journal scope, correct formatting, correct number of required files in the acceptable manner by the journal and a plagiarism score of less than 18%.
- Manuscript in which noncompliant directive is detected is sent back to the authors for compliance directive. Detailed instruction on how to resubmit the manuscript with compliant directive is sent to the corresponding through email. Manuscript with noncompliance directives that are not addressed by the authors within 30 days or when the authors fails to inform the Editor for extension on when they will resubmit the manuscript will be deleted from the journal portal. In that case, the authors have the option to start the process afresh.
- Submitted manuscript that fulfil the compliance directives of the journal is sent to the Review stage where it undergoes in-house editorial assessment within 7-14 days. Manuscripts judged by the in-house editorial team to be inappropriate are rejected without external review. Manuscripts judged by the in-house editorial team to be inappropriate are sent for external peer review.
- A scientific editor is assigned to handle the external review process. The scientific editor evaluates the manuscript within 7-14 days to determine if it merit further consideration.
- Manuscript that do not merit further consideration is sent to the Editor-in-Chief for decision and then contact the authors.
- For manuscript that merit further consideration, the Scientific editor then search and invite appropriate reviewers who are expert in the area of the manuscript. This stage takes about 7-21 days or more.
- The invited reviewers are given 7 days to either accept or decline the invitation.
- Peer reviewers are given 14 days from acceptance to submit their reports.
- The review process can take two or more rounds depending on the circumstances and peculiarity of each submission.
- Based on the recommendation received from the peer reviewers, the scientific editor make a decision to the Editor-in-Chief.
- The Editor-in-Chief evaluate the review report and the recommendation and makes the final decision.
- The entire peer review process may take between 60-90 days and can be monitored by the authors to see the status of their paper.
The reports of at least two independent reviewers are used for the evaluation of the manuscript sent for peer review. These independent reviewers may be suggested by the authors, but the choice of reviewers is strictly at the Scientific Editor’s discretion. The selected reviewers and the authors of the manuscript will not be identified to each other.
The decision an editor will make after consideration of the reviewers’ evaluations is one of the following:
- Accept– This means the manuscript will be published by the journal and does not require any changes or modifications.
- Minor or major revision– In this case, the authors are given an opportunity to address the reviewers’ comments by submitting a revised manuscript. Usually, the revised manuscript is sent back to the original reviewer for re-review. When submitting a revision, the following should be uploaded to the online submission system:
- a point-by-point rebuttal letter indicating how the comments raised by the reviewers have been addressed. In the case that some comments cannot be addressed, it is expected that the rebuttal letter provides the opportunity to justify this;
- a marked-up version of the manuscript that highlights the changes made and
- a ‘clean’ (non-highlighted) version of the manuscript.
- Rejector resubmit for re-evaluation– This decision is made for manuscripts which fail to meet the high standards of NJBMB. If the Editor-in-Chief feels that the work has potential despite its current limitations, he may express interest in seeing a future resubmission. However, if the authors decide to resubmit, the updated version of the manuscript must be submitted online as a new manuscript, with a cover letter that includes a point-by-point response to referees’ comments.