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Meta-Research: Tracking the popularity and outcomes of all bioRxiv preprints

  1. Richard J Abdill
  2. Ran Blekhman  Is a corresponding author
  1. University of Minnesota, United States
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Cite this article as: eLife 2019;8:e45133 doi: 10.7554/eLife.45133

Abstract

The growth of preprints in the life sciences has been reported widely and is driving policy changes for journals and funders, but little quantitative information has been published about preprint usage. Here, we report how we collected and analyzed data on all 37,648 preprints uploaded to bioRxiv.org, the largest biology-focused preprint server, in its first five years. The rate of preprint uploads to bioRxiv continues to grow (exceeding 2,100 in October 2018), as does the number of downloads (1.1 million in October 2018). We also find that two-thirds of preprints posted before 2017 were later published in peer-reviewed journals, and find a relationship between the number of downloads a preprint has received and the impact factor of the journal in which it is published. We also describe Rxivist.org, a web application that provides multiple ways to interact with preprint metadata.

Article and author information

Author details

  1. Richard J Abdill

    Department of Genetics, Cell Biology, and Development, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0001-9565-5832
  2. Ran Blekhman

    Department of Genetics, Cell Biology, and Development, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, United States
    For correspondence
    blekhman@umn.edu
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0003-3218-613X

Funding

College of Biological Sciences, University of Minnesota

  • Ran Blekhman

National Institutes of Health (R35-GM128716)

  • Ran Blekhman

University of Minnesota (McKnight Land-Grant Professorship)

  • Ran Blekhman

The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.

Reviewing Editor

  1. Emma Pewsey, eLife, United Kingdom

Publication history

  1. Received: January 28, 2019
  2. Accepted: April 23, 2019
  3. Accepted Manuscript published: April 24, 2019 (version 1)
  4. Version of Record published: May 10, 2019 (version 2)

Copyright

© 2019, Abdill & Blekhman

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

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