What is mSphere®?
mSphere is a new, open-access (OA), pan-microbial sciences journal published by the American Society for Microbiology, the oldest life sciences membership organization in the United States.
What is mSphereDirect?
mSphereDirect is a new, optional, publishing pathway in mSphere that facilitates a fundamental shift from traditional peer review by putting authors in control and allowing them to secure reviews from recognized experts as quickly as possible. This pathway guarantees a decision within five business days. Authors select their own reviewers and submit scientific reviews simultaneously with the original research. mSphere Senior Editors validate the reviewer's credentials and evaluate the quality of the submitted reviews and research. This pathway puts authors in control, and allows for rapid decisions, speed to publication, and transparency in review. Find out more about mSphereDirect.
Why was mSphere developed?
The ASM realized that a gap existed in its collection of excellent journals. More authors want to publish in an OA setting, and the increasingly interdisciplinary nature of research meant that a growing number of papers were falling outside the scopes of the traditional ASM specialty journals.
What areas of research does mSphere publish?
mSphere considers quality scientific studies in any area of the microbial sciences, including papers by scientists who work with microbes but may not consider themselves "microbiologists."
What distinguishes mSphere from other OA journals that cover the broad discipline of microbiology?
One of the major frustrations for authors is the inordinate length of time that it can take to get manuscripts published. mSphere provides a rapid review process and avoids multiple rounds of revisions. This is accomplished through an editorial structure that empowers editors to make decisions in a streamlined manner. In addition, accepted manuscripts are published continuously, as soon as they are ready; they are not held for publication in monthly issues.
The ASM already publishes mBio®. How is mSphere different?
mBio has a very high standard for acceptance, and many important and significant studies cannot be accommodated by mBio. Such studies may have a home in mSphere.
If my manuscript is rejected by mBio, will it automatically be published by mSphere?
No. However, if a paper is rejected by mBio on the basis of scope or importance, the mSphere Editor in Chief may be asked by the mBio Editor in Chief whether mSphere would like to consider the manuscript. If mSphere deems the work to be scientifically sound and of significance, it may allow a transfer, provided that the authors approve.
What about manuscripts that have been rejected by the ASM specialty journals?
As is the case for mBio, papers rejected by the other ASM journals may be considered by mSphere on a case-by-case basis. Authors should not assume that rejection by another journal means automatic consideration by mSphere. Authors of approved transfers or resubmissions from a specialty journal to mSphere may be asked to revise their papers and papers may be sent for additional review.
Does mSphere charge a submission fee?
Does mSphere consider submissions of manuscripts that have previously appeared on preprint servers?
Yes. For more information, please review the ASM journals preprint policy.
What will it cost to publish in mSphere?
ASM has adopted an "author pays" open-access model to cover publishing costs. Authors (or their funding agencies or institutions) pay a flat publication fee for each article published. This fee includes immediate open access and unlimited color figures. If the corresponding author is an active member of ASM at the Contributing or Premium level, the Article Processing Charge (APC) is $2,250 for Research Articles and Resource Reports and $1,125 for the shorter Observation and Opinions and Hypotheses formats. If the corresponding author is a nonmember or a member at the Supporting level, the APC is $3,000 for Research Articles and Resource Reports and $1,690 for the shorter Observation and Opinions and Hypotheses formats. Nonmember corresponding authors or Supporting members may join ASM and renew or upgrade their membership online to obtain discounts on publication fees.
Will authors retain copyright of research published in mSphere?
Yes, authors retain copyright. To allow for maximum dissemination of research, articles in mSphere are published under the Creative Commons CC BY license, which allows unrestricted reuse of the material with proper attribution. Users have the right to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles.
Are mSphere citations available in PubMed?
As a PMC participating journal, mSphere citations are included and searchable in PubMed.
ASM has submitted an application to the National Library of Medicine for mSphere to be considered for indexing and inclusion in the MEDLINE database.
What will happen to the Eukaryotic Cell® (EC) website (http://ec.asm.org/) and access to articles after EC merges with mSphere? How will permission requests for EC articles be handled?
The Eukaryotic Cell website will remain on HighWire and all articles will be freely available beginning January 2016; full texts of articles will continue to be available through PubMed Central. Permissions will continue to be obtained from CCC RightsLink via a link provided on the EC article page. mSphere searches will include EC content by default.