A Word About Hypothesis

It is with great pleasure that we introduce the inaugural issue of Hypothesis, a peer-reviewed journal that focuses on the sharing and discussion of novel, interdisciplinary research and ideas within the University of Toronto community.

The present time is an extremely exciting era for science. The availability of numerous genome sequences and our growing ability to gather data in a high-throughput manner has led to countless discoveries and the emergence of many new fields. For the first time, computer scientists, mathematicians, chemists and biologists are beginning to  depend on one another and are asking similar questions. For this reason scientific advancement, now more than ever before, will require that members of the research community communicate and share information in a fluent, unbiased and open manner.

Toronto is a microcosm of the international research community. The University of Toronto and a growing network of affiliated public and private research institutions are at the forefront of many areas of research and participate in the advancement of science at an international level. We therefore believe that the University of Toronto community would greatly benefit from a peer-reviewed scientific journal like Hypothesis which will provide a forum for researchers to share and discuss various ideas and primary data, from those that are novel, controversial, and provocative, to those that reinforce our understanding of established facts. Although this first issue contains contributions primarily from the Department of Medical Biophysics, we intend to expand the journal to include articles from  the entire university community.

Furthermore, Hypothesis believes that the constant pressure to publish “positive data” in the current scientific literature dissuades the publication failed hypotheses or hypotheses that cannot be currently tested due to inconclusive previous data or a lack of necessary technology.  These “negative data”, however, may still be of great value to other researchers in designing their own experiments. For this reason, Hypothesis accepts such “negative data” for publication. We hope that the publication of “negative data” will provide scientists with responsible and balanced information to support informed experimental decisions and that it will promote discussion in the research community.

We would like to thank all the authors, editors and reviewers without whom this journal would not be possible.  We would also like to thank the Department of Medical Biophysics for supporting and encouraging our efforts. For everyone involved in the conception, gestation and genesis of this first issue, the process was not without its difficulties, and although we are pleased with the final product, we are conscious that there is room for improvement in future editions. Hypothesis therefore not only welcomes but craves all feedback, comments and suggestions that will help improve the journal.  Finally, we hope that you enjoy this first issue of Hypothesis, that you are stimulated and inspired by the ideas discussed within it, and that you consider submitting a manuscript for the next issue of Hypothesis, due to be published in May 2004.

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