|Serghiou S, Ioannidis JPA (2018) Altmetric scores, citations, and publication of studies posted as preprints. JAMA 319:402-4.|
Abstract: Preprints are versions of articles that are made publicly available prior to peer-reviewed publication, are widely used in physical sciences [Butler D (2003) Biologists join physics preprint club. Nature 425:548], and are now emerging in life sciences [Bourne PE, Polka JK, Vale RD, Kiley R (2017) Ten simple rules to consider regarding preprint submission. PLoS Comput Biol 13:e1005473. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pcbi.1005473]. Preprints provide immediate access to new information; however, articles not formally peer reviewed may contain errors in methods, results, or interpretation [Annesley T, Scott M, Bastian H, et al (2017) Biomedical journals and preprint services: friends or foes? Clin Chem 63:453-8; Benjamin DJ, Berger JO, Johannesson M, et al (2017) Redefine statistical significance. Nat Hum Behav. doi:10.1038/s41562-017-0189-z].
As preprints in medicine are debated, data on how preprints are used, cited, and published are needed. We evaluated views and downloads and Altmetric scores and citations of preprints and their publications. We also assessed whether Altmetric scores and citations of published articles correlated with prior preprint posting.
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- Of 7760 preprints, 7750 were unique. Preprint availability on bioRxiv increased over time (from a median of 54/month in 2013 to median of 392/month in 2016; Table).
- Although preprints were not well cited, 18% had Altmetric scores in the top 5% and 48% were estimated to reach peer-reviewed publication within 1 year. Articles with a preprint received higher Altmetric scores and more citations than articles without a preprint.