Molecular Autism receives highest Impact Factor

On July 29, 2014, Thomson Reuters awarded an Impact Factor of 5.486 to the open access journal Molecular Autism. This represents the highest Impact Factor for any journal dedicated to autism or related neurodevelopmental conditions.

The journal was created in 2010, by Professor Joseph Buxbaum, Director of the Seaver Autism Center and Professor of Psychiatry, Neuroscience, and Genetics and Genomic Sciences at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, and Professor Simon Baron-Cohen, Director of the Autism Research Centre at the University of Cambridge. The goal of the journal was to provide an outlet for the volume of exciting genetic and other molecular autism research papers, and to make this cutting-edge autism research available freely via open access. In the past four years, Molecular Autism has grown and now publishes approximately five articles per month.

Since its launch, Molecular Autism has published over 100 articles. The journal averages 30,000 accesses per month, and April 2014 saw a record of over 40,000 accesses.

The Impact Factor (IF) is a measure of the frequency with which the “average article” in a journal has been cited in a particular year or period, and the annual Journal Citation Report (JCR) IF is a ratio between citations and recent citable items published. This IF is the first for Molecular Autism, after being tracked for several years, and it places the journal among the highest in the broader fields of neurosciences and genetics based on category information from the 2013 JCR. It ranks 34 out of 251 journals (Q1) in Neuroscience, and 21 out of 164 journals (Q1) in Genetics & Heredity.

While impact factors are one way of measuring impact, the strong performance of Molecular Autism provides further evidence that open access journals are delivering high rates of citation as well as high visibility.

Prof. Buxbaum said: “The high Impact Factor reflects the significance and importance of the articles found in Molecular Autism, and having such a high IF will ensure that we will continue to receive high-impact manuscripts describing key studies in autism and related conditions.”

Prof. Baron-Cohen added: “We are extremely proud to have launched this journal and achieved this milestone. We greatly appreciate the researchers that have submitted top-quality studies, the tireless reviewers, and the editorial staff from BioMed Central.”


Additional information:

For more information, see “Capping four years of growth of Molecular Autism: impact factor coming in 2014,” by Profs. Buxbaum and Baron-Cohen.

The Seaver Autism Center for Research and Treatment at Mount Sinai conducts progressive research studies aimed at understanding the multiple causes of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The multidisciplinary team is comprised of experts in the fields of genetics, molecular biology, model systems, neuroimaging, and experimental therapeutics who are dedicated to discovering the biological causes of ASD. The Center strives to develop innovative diagnostics and treatments for integration into the provision of personalized, comprehensive assessment and care for people with ASD. The Seaver Autism Center was founded through the generous support of the Beatrice and Samuel A. Seaver Foundation. For more information, visit

The Autism Research Centre (ARC) is situated within the School of Clinical Medicine in the Department of Psychiatry, at the University of Cambridge. It brings together scientists working on autism from around the University of Cambridge. The ARC has research scientists drawn from a range of disciplines (cognitive neuroscience, psychiatry, paediatrics, neonatology, genetics, and biochemistry). The ARC was founded in 1999 and celebrated its 10th anniversary at the Royal Society. For more information, visit

Molecular Autism, published by BioMed Central, is a peer-reviewed, online open access journal that publishes high-quality basic, translational and clinical research that has relevance to the etiology, pathobiology, or treatment of autism and related neurodevelopmental conditions. Molecular Autism publishes empirical studies, reviews, and brief communications, and it emphasizes research that includes integration across levels. For more information, visit

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