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Researchers in low-income countries leap at publishing waiver

Sudan medical researcher Ishag Adam tops the list of 850 African academics who have increased their publication rate through BioMed Central outreach efforts.

Adam, an obstetrics and gynaecology lecturer at the University of Khartoum medical school, has co-authored almost one article a month on average.

So far this year, he has had seven articles published in BioMed journals. Last year, he had eight articles published in BioMed’s open access journals.

Adam has had twenty publications in BioMed peer-reviewed journals since 2008.

That was the year when the company waived its processing fee of US $1,870 per article to encourage the participation of researchers from low-income countries.

The 46-year-old scientist said publishing helped build the author’s reputation, making it easier to obtain funding.

Adam attributed his high number of publications to collaborations with colleagues, as well as his “minimum teaching load.”

The Sudanese scientist’s latest two papers both appeared last month, with one appearing in BioMed’s Malaria Journal, which has a very high impact factor of 3.49.

Adam and colleagues from Sudan’s Ribat University, among others, wrote about malaria and pre-eclampsia among pregnant women in central Sudan.

The article, which only appeared online on 7 September 2011, has already been viewed 568 times.

Still in September, Adam also published in BioMed’s journal Diagnostic Pathology (impact factor: 1.39).

In that journal, Adam and four colleagues reported on the effectiveness of a portable fluorescent microscope to diagnose malaria in pregnant women.

The article went online on 24 September and had been accessed online 258 times at time of writing.

In June, Adam co-authored an article on the high rate of close calls among pregnant women in a rural hospital in Sudan.

The research, done with colleagues from Sudan’s Kassala University and Gadarif University appeared in the BioMed journal BMC Pregnancy Childbirth (unofficial impact factor: 2.19).

A month earlier, in May, he co-wrote a study into the spread of cytomegalovirus and measles among pregnant women in western Sudan.

This report appeared in another important BioMed journal, the Virology Journal (impact factor: 2.55).

The same month, Adam co-authored an investigation into low blood sugar and severe malaria during pregnancy, which appeared in another significant BioMed journal, Parasites and Vectors (impact factor: 2.13).

In February, his co-authored research on the use of family planning methods in eastern Sudan was published in the BioMed journal BMC Research Notes.

BMC Research Notes only began publication in 2008 and so is not yet being tracked by Thomson Reuters, which requires several years of data before issuing an impact factor.

However, the journal does appear on the SCImago journal rank, which is based on citation information from Scopus as well as being trackable via PubMed and Google Scholar.

In January, Adam was also the corresponding author in a paper in the BioMed journal Annals of Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobials (unofficial impact factor: 1.71).

The research was co-authored with colleagues from Sudan’s Al-Neelain University, the national health laboratory and the Khartoum North hospital.

The paper recommended screening pregnant women for urinary tract infections, as antibiotic-resistant bacteria were common and produced poor health in both mother and infant.

He is among the few Sudanese researchers who have published in both local and international journals.

Sudan produced 146 scientific publications in 2008, according to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization Science Report 2010.