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Bristol-Myers Squibb would probably be interested in accessing such a registry, but probably would not contribute to it because a registry is a company’s intellectual capital and money, Lou Ann Di Nallo said. According to Ned Heindel, this concept is not at all new. He said the ACS had a section in its Journal of Medicinal Chemistry some years ago that listed negative results for “me-too” compounds. Di Nallo added that it is extremely helpful to the pharmaceutical industry to know which compounds have no activity.

The shortcomings in the closed peer-review process are twofold. Critical messages are watered down, and the review process presents an opportunity for hidden plagiarism. Although traditional peer review works very well in many instances, very valuable comments made by the referees are lost. This leads to a decrease of scientific discussion in traditional journals. There are two conflicting needs in publishing: (1) rapid publication and (2) thorough review and discussion. Pöschl explained that a two-stage publication process with full traditional peer review can meet both of these needs.

Other institutions such as California State Fullerton or Williams College reduced their number of chemistry journals from 70-80 in 1990 to 60 in 2000, Michael Doyle said. However, there are also institutions like Ohio Wesleyan and other very small institutions that may have only 15 journals which they are struggling to maintain. He said one size does not fit all. There are some very high quality undergraduate institutions that spend much more than others on their library budget, have much greater access to instrumentation and hold funded research grants.

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