APS launches new online journal to focus on link between genes and function

July 13, 1999

Bethesda, MD -- The American Physiological Society today announced the launch of Physiological Genomics. This new online journal was created to provide the scientific community with a vehicle for the rapid dissemination of information about genetic physiology -- the influence of genes on physiological function. The journal will be posted to the World Wide Web on July 15, 1999 at http://www.physiolgenomics.org

Articles for Physiological Genomics will be submitted, reviewed, and published online, with a paper version of the journal published as needed for archival purposes. The on-line submission and review process will be handled through the APS web site at http://www.apscentral.org. This utilization of World Wide Web information technology will not only speed up the publication process, it will also make it possible for researchers to provide readers with large data sets and to display results in dynamic formats that would be impossible to produce on a printed page.

"The existing and forthcoming DNA sequences of model organisms and human are proceeding at an expeditious pace, and the enormous task of linking genes to function has now begun," wrote Editor-in-Chief Victor J. Dzau, MD, in the welcome editorial. Dzau is the Hershey Professor of Medicine and Chairman of the Department of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. "New genetic knowledge coupled with existing and emerging molecular genetic, bioinformatic, and other biological techniques have paved the way for the next great challenge and opportunity for physiology and medicine: a more complete understanding of whole organism functioning," Dzau noted.

Physiological Genomics has been in development for two years. It was conceived by an international group of scientists from academia, government, and industry that convened at Cold Spring Harbor in February of 1997 to discuss "Genomics to Physiology and Beyond: How Do We Get There?" [see The Physiologist 40(5): 205, 1997; http://www.faseb.org/aps/tphys97.htm].

The group that met at the Banbury Conference Center at Cold Spring Harbor recommended a broad, international "Genes-to-Health Initiative," including the development of single forum for rapid dissemination of new ideas and discoveries that would bring together investigators of multiple disciplines with a single focus of genetic physiology.

"Physiological Genomics intends to be a 'one-stop shop' while serving as a bridge linking genome sequencing and mapping to integrative physiology and clinical medicine," Dzau said in his editorial.

"We now can study biological processes from the initial actions of genes within the nucleus through cellular processes to the functions of tissues and organs and ultimately to the workings of the organism," Dzau pointed out, noting the enormous implications of this development for clinical medicine: "We will soon have the opportunity to assess individual variation in normal and disease phenotypes. Understanding the variation in these processes will elucidate how small yet different perturbations can produce the same overt disease in two individuals who have dramatically different responses to treatment. This knowledge will ultimately lead to new therapies, diagnostic tools, and better overall health management."

Physiological Genomics will publish the results of a wide variety of studies from human and informative model systems with techniques linking genes and pathways to physiology, from prokaryotes to eukaryotes. The Journal encourages the submission of research that links genes to cell replication, development, metabolic function, cell signal transduction and intracellular signaling pathways, tissue and organ function, and whole organism function. Physiological Genomics encourages the utilization of approaches ranging from expression profiling, assays for molecular interactions, protein mapping, functional predictions from structural assignments, natural and directed gene alteration, selective breeding studies, gene identification, and the assessment of gene-environment interaction. The Journal welcomes important new technologies and concepts that enhance the study of physiological genomics. The Journal encourages publication of new computational approaches, integrative models, and image analysis predictive of gene function. Physiological Genomics will also feature invited reviews and perspectives that contribute to enhancing the understanding of the scientific approaches and concepts that link genetics and physiology.
The American Physiological Society (APS) is a professional scientific society of more than 9,000 members employed in academia, industry, government and other research institutes worldwide. Founded in 1887, the goal of the APS is to foster scientific research, education and the dissemination of scientific information in the physiological sciences. To that end, the APS publishes 14 scientific journals, all of which are available on the Internet as part of the APS online collection of journals at http://www.physiology.org. Information about the APS can be obtained at http://www.faseb.org/aps/.

American Physiological Society

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