New Report – How COVID-19 is Changing Research Culture – Digital Science

“The report key findings include: 

As of 1 June 2020, there have been upwards of 42,700 scholarly articles on COVID-19 published, 3,100 clinical trials, 420 datasets, 270 patents, 750 policy documents, and 150 grants.

Preprints have rapidly established as a mainstream research output and a key part of COVID-19 research efforts. They started at relatively low levels in early January 2020 and accounted for around one quarter of research output by the beginning of May 2020.

To date, more than 8,300 organisations have been involved in supporting COVID-19 research, with over 71,800 individual researchers identified as working on COVID-19 research.

The highest intensity of research into COVID-19 began in China and gradually migrated west mirroring the movement of the virus itself.

While the US and EU have both now published more than China in journals such as The Lancet, New England Journal of Medicine and JAMA, China continues to benefit from an early mover advantage and continues to enjoy the lionshare of the citations. While research in the field is clearly moving quickly, it currently remains anchored to China’s early publications.

A density map of global COVID-19 paper production shows there are three to four major centres of research: an extended area in China composed of several cities—Wuhan, where the virus is alleged to have started, Beijing and Shanghai; Europe, specifically Italy and the UK, two of the harder hit countries; the US’s east coast research corridor including Boston and New York; and finally, a lighter focus from the Californian institutions on the West coast.

The top producing institution of COVID-19 research (since the beginning of 2020) is in China, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, followed by Harvard University and the University of Oxford.

The top healthcare producers of COVID-19 research (since the beginning of 2020) are Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, then Renmin Hospital of Wuhan University, and Massachusetts General Hospital.

While the proportion of internationally co-authored work is steady, the vast majority of research on COVID to date has been unusually authored within countries.

At the time of writing, 156 grants totalling at least 20.8m USD have been awarded to COVID-themed researchers in public institutions.

Much of the clinical trial initiation activity in January and February is sponsored by China and this then begins to fall off in March, April and May. We see a similar wave for Europe and the US, but shifted back by two months, beginning in March….”

Academic libraries and coronavirus: a view from Italy

“A few publishers opened access to textbooks for students (but not so many indeed). Some Italian publishers and vendors followed the invitation that has come from many libraries and institutions to open up their collections, like that promoted by the Wellcome Trust. Many publishers responded positively and created free open access hubs to help researchers all over the world to find a cure for this terrible disease, and libraries highlighted them on their web pages. However, most publishers, either in Italy or internationally, just opened a selection of resources – and in some cases upon request – that they believe are useful to Covid-19 research, but they did not open all their publications to allow researchers to see and choose what can be really useful from the different scientific perspectives necessarily implied in this urgent aim. Definitely, what has emerged quite clearly from this pandemic emergency are the many obstacles and walls that prevent access to knowledge and science, as well as all the restrains current acquisitions methods for digital resources in libraries impose through clauses included in subscription licenses….

In the petition, libraries ask publishers to allow digital lending and direct document delivery with no restrains, and to allow opening of library collections temporarily to all users, including doctors and researchers not affiliated to academia who, according to license clauses, normally cannot access academic library resources. Moreover, The Library Commission of the Conference of Italian University Rectors (CRUI) signed the International Coalition of Library Consortia (ICOLC) Covid-19 petition for access to electronic resources from publishers….

This pandemic outbreak has clearly shown how crucial open access and open science have become. Researchers all over the world need to access data and knowledge quickly, as soon as it is produced, freely and without any limitation, in order to be able to defeat coronavirus. For this reason, AISA, an Italian Association for the promotion of Open Science, wrote a public letter to the President of the Italian Republic to ask for a serious and urgent national policy for open science, starting from rethinking research assessment and copyright laws….”

How COVID-19 is Changing Research Culture

“The research world has moved faster than many would have suspected possible in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In five months, a volume of work has been generated that even the most intensive of emergent fields have taken years to create.

In our new report, How COVID-19 is Changing Research Culture, we investigate the research landscape trends and cultural changes in response to COVID-19. The report includes analysis of publication trends, geographic focal points of research, and collaboration patterns….”

Missing clinical trial data: the knowledge gap in the safety of potential COVID-19 drugs | medRxiv

Abstract:  Abstract Objectives: Several drugs are being repurposed for the treatment of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic based on in vitro or early clinical findings. As these drugs are being used in varied regimens and dosages, it is important to enable synthesis of existing safety data from clinical trials. However, availability of safety information is limited by a lack of timely reporting of clinical trial results on public registries or through academic publication. We aimed to analyse the knowledge gap in safety data by quantifying the number of missing clinical trial results for drugs potentially being repurposed for COVID-19. Design: ClinicalTrials.gov was searched for 19 drugs that have been identified as potential treatments for COVID-19. Relevant clinical trials for any prior indication were listed by identifier (NCT number) and checked for timely result reporting (within 395 days of the primary completion date). Additionally, PubMed and Google Scholar were searched using the NCT number to identify publications of results not listed on the registry. A second, blinded search of 10% of trials was conducted to assess reviewer concordance. Results: Of 3754 completed trials, 1516 (40.4%) did not post results on ClinicalTrials.gov or in the academic literature. 1172 (31.2%) completed trials had tabular results on ClinicalTrials.gov. A further 1066 (28.4%) completed trials had results from the literature search, but did not report results on ClinicalTrials.gov. Key drugs missing clinical trial results include hydroxychloroquine (37.0% completed trials unreported), favipiravir (77.8%) and lopinavir (40.5%). Conclusion: There is an important evidence gap for the safety of drugs being repurposed for COVID-19. This uncertainty could cause a large burden of additional morbidity and mortality during the pandemic. We recommend caution in experimental drug use for non-severe disease and urge clinical trial sponsors to report missing results retrospectively.

 

Database launched to share early-stage UK Covid-19 research – Research Professional News

“The Academy of Medical Sciences has launched a database for tracking early-stage UK Covid-19 research.

Announced on 1 June, the Covid-19 preclinical drug development database aims to help researchers identify collaborations, share expertise, materials and methods, as well as prioritise research and avoid duplicating effort.

The academy is calling on researchers from across academia and industry to submit projects to the database through an optional survey….”

NIH Preprint Pilot in PubMed Central

“NLM is preparing to launch a pilot project to test the viability of making preprints resulting from NIH-funded research available via PubMed Central (PMC). The primary goal of the NIH Preprint Pilot will be to explore approaches to increasing the discoverability of early NIH research results. The pilot will begin the week of June 8, 2020 and will run for a minimum of 12 months. Lessons learned during that time will inform future NLM efforts with preprints.

In its role as the repository for peer-reviewed manuscripts supported by NIH, PMC already makes available more than one million published papers resulting from NIH-supported research. Building on NIH guidance (NOT-OD-17-050) to investigators that encouraged the use of interim research products, such as preprints, to speed the dissemination and enhance the rigor of their work, NLM hopes this pilot will inform possible future steps to further accelerate discovery and access of papers that are developed with NIH funds and encourage the open and fast dissemination of NIH research results, when appropriate.

The pilot will initially focus on increasing the discoverability of preprints with NIH support relating to the current COVID-19 pandemic. NLM is leveraging the iSearch COVID-19 portfolio tool developed by the NIH Office of Portfolio Analysis to identify preprints reporting on COVID-19 research supported by the NIH intramural or extramural programs. This narrowly scoped first phase should allow NLM an opportunity to streamline workflows and refine the details of implementation with a set of articles for which there is a growing demand for accelerated access.

As curation and ingest workflows become scalable, NLM will expand the pilot to include preprints resulting from the broader spectrum of NIH research….”

NIH Preprint Pilot in PubMed Central

“NLM is preparing to launch a pilot project to test the viability of making preprints resulting from NIH-funded research available via PubMed Central (PMC). The primary goal of the NIH Preprint Pilot will be to explore approaches to increasing the discoverability of early NIH research results. The pilot will begin the week of June 8, 2020 and will run for a minimum of 12 months. Lessons learned during that time will inform future NLM efforts with preprints.

In its role as the repository for peer-reviewed manuscripts supported by NIH, PMC already makes available more than one million published papers resulting from NIH-supported research. Building on NIH guidance (NOT-OD-17-050) to investigators that encouraged the use of interim research products, such as preprints, to speed the dissemination and enhance the rigor of their work, NLM hopes this pilot will inform possible future steps to further accelerate discovery and access of papers that are developed with NIH funds and encourage the open and fast dissemination of NIH research results, when appropriate.

The pilot will initially focus on increasing the discoverability of preprints with NIH support relating to the current COVID-19 pandemic. NLM is leveraging the iSearch COVID-19 portfolio tool developed by the NIH Office of Portfolio Analysis to identify preprints reporting on COVID-19 research supported by the NIH intramural or extramural programs. This narrowly scoped first phase should allow NLM an opportunity to streamline workflows and refine the details of implementation with a set of articles for which there is a growing demand for accelerated access.

As curation and ingest workflows become scalable, NLM will expand the pilot to include preprints resulting from the broader spectrum of NIH research….”

NIH Preprint Pilot in PubMed Central

“NLM is preparing to launch a pilot project to test the viability of making preprints resulting from NIH-funded research available via PubMed Central (PMC). The primary goal of the NIH Preprint Pilot will be to explore approaches to increasing the discoverability of early NIH research results. The pilot will begin the week of June 8, 2020 and will run for a minimum of 12 months. Lessons learned during that time will inform future NLM efforts with preprints.

In its role as the repository for peer-reviewed manuscripts supported by NIH, PMC already makes available more than one million published papers resulting from NIH-supported research. Building on NIH guidance (https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-17-050.html) to investigators that encouraged the use of interim research products, such as preprints, to speed the dissemination and enhance the rigor of their work, NLM hopes this pilot will inform possible future steps to further accelerate discovery and access of papers that are developed with NIH funds and encourage the open and fast dissemination of NIH research results, when appropriate.

The pilot will initially focus on increasing the discoverability of preprints with NIH support relating to the current COVID-19 pandemic. NLM is leveraging the iSearch COVID-19 portfolio tool (https://icite.od.nih.gov/covid19/search/) developed by the NIH Office of Portfolio Analysis to identify preprints reporting on COVID-19 research supported by the NIH intramural or extramural programs. This narrowly scoped first phase should allow NLM an opportunity to streamline workflows and refine the details of implementation with a set of articles for which there is a growing demand for accelerated access.

As curation and ingest workflows become scalable, NLM will expand the pilot to include preprints resulting from the broader spectrum of NIH research. Further, to enable NIH investigators to more easily report preprints as products of award, NLM will simplify the process for adding preprint citations to My Bibliography this summer.

NLM expects to engage with preprint servers throughout the pilot that include a significant volume of preprints with NIH support and meet the general expectations laid out in the 2017 NIH Guidance for selecting interim research product repositories.”

NIH Preprint Pilot in PubMed Central

“NLM is preparing to launch a pilot project to test the viability of making preprints resulting from NIH-funded research available via PubMed Central (PMC). The primary goal of the NIH Preprint Pilot will be to explore approaches to increasing the discoverability of early NIH research results. The pilot will begin the week of June 8, 2020 and will run for a minimum of 12 months. Lessons learned during that time will inform future NLM efforts with preprints.

In its role as the repository for peer-reviewed manuscripts supported by NIH, PMC already makes available more than one million published papers resulting from NIH-supported research. Building on NIH guidance (https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-17-050.html) to investigators that encouraged the use of interim research products, such as preprints, to speed the dissemination and enhance the rigor of their work, NLM hopes this pilot will inform possible future steps to further accelerate discovery and access of papers that are developed with NIH funds and encourage the open and fast dissemination of NIH research results, when appropriate.

The pilot will initially focus on increasing the discoverability of preprints with NIH support relating to the current COVID-19 pandemic. NLM is leveraging the iSearch COVID-19 portfolio tool (https://icite.od.nih.gov/covid19/search/) developed by the NIH Office of Portfolio Analysis to identify preprints reporting on COVID-19 research supported by the NIH intramural or extramural programs. This narrowly scoped first phase should allow NLM an opportunity to streamline workflows and refine the details of implementation with a set of articles for which there is a growing demand for accelerated access.

As curation and ingest workflows become scalable, NLM will expand the pilot to include preprints resulting from the broader spectrum of NIH research. Further, to enable NIH investigators to more easily report preprints as products of award, NLM will simplify the process for adding preprint citations to My Bibliography this summer.

NLM expects to engage with preprint servers throughout the pilot that include a significant volume of preprints with NIH support and meet the general expectations laid out in the 2017 NIH Guidance for selecting interim research product repositories.”

Epidemiological data from the COVID-19 outbreak, real-time case information | Scientific Data

“Cases of a novel coronavirus were first reported in Wuhan, Hubei province, China, in December 2019 and have since spread across the world. Epidemiological studies have indicated human-to-human transmission in China and elsewhere. To aid the analysis and tracking of the COVID-19 epidemic we collected and curated individual-level data from national, provincial, and municipal health reports, as well as additional information from online reports. All data are geo-coded and, where available, include symptoms, key dates (date of onset, admission, and confirmation), and travel history. The generation of detailed, real-time, and robust data for emerging disease outbreaks is important and can help to generate robust evidence that will support and inform public health decision making.

The data are openly available and we will continue to curate the database as new information is made available….”