Introducing a new manuscript format: Enabling access to immunogenomic population data with short population reports
The capacity to replicate the findings of a study is key to the advancement of research, and access to the data on which a study is predicated is required for true replication. Population genetic studies have long been a focus of the immunogenetic research community, but access to the primary genotype data underlying these studies has historically been limited. With the notable exception of the International HLA and Immunogenetics Workshops, it is primarily allele and haplotype frequency data that are made available upon publication for most immunogenetic population studies. However, such frequency data are the products of a prior analysis, and may reflect unreported methodological biases. Access to the primary genotype data allows independent validation and true replication of the study, and knowledge of the ambiguities associated with those genotype data maximizes the utility of population data for replication and meta-analyses.
With this issue of Human Immunology, we are introducing a new manuscript format. Structured descriptions of reference populations, populations of anthropological interest and control populations for disease studies, along with genetic data and minimal analyses, can now be submitted as Short Population Reports. Short Population Reports will be peer-reviewed, and will follow a standard format (described below), with the aim of fostering the availability and archiving of the genetic data underlying immunogenetic population studies.