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<em>Poultry Science</em> Journal Archives to go Online

by 5m Editor
15 September 2010, at 11:41p.m.

US - Work has begun on a Poultry Foundation project that will make 88 years of <em>Poultry Science</em> articles available online, including 17,000 articles and dozens of classic papers, boosted by a significant donation from Novus International.

The Poultry Science Association (PSA) Foundation has announced that is has reached its initial fund-raising goals and begun work on its legacy project, with the goal of making thousands of poultry-related research papers available to scientists online for the first time. The Poultry Science Association Foundation Inc., is a charitable corporation affiliated with the Poultry Science Association (PSA).

The genesis of the project, according to the Foundation, was the widely acknowledged difficulty – for researchers and students alike – of accessing back issues of Poultry Science, a scientific journal published by PSA. PSA began providing digital access to current issues of Poultry Science in 1996, so today 14 years of the journal are already available online to subscribers anywhere in the world. But issues prior to 1996 are often difficult to locate.

Foundation President, Dr William Saylor, a professor in the Department of Animal and Food Sciences at the University of Delaware, explained: "Because of space issues, many libraries only keep a few years of their traditional bound journals readily available in-house. The rest they move to off-site storage facilities, making access to thousands of Poultry Science articles representing decades of research, including many ground-breaking papers, much more difficult. The Legacy Project will change that, giving scientists immediate and searchable Internet access to this entire archive of invaluable work."

The Legacy Project will scan, index and make available online more than 600 back issues of Poultry Science (1921–1996) and its predecessor journals, International Association of Instructors and Investigators in Poultry Husbandry Proceedings (1908-1912) and the Journal of the American Association of Instructors and Investigators in Poultry Husbandry (1914-1921).

Scanning for the project has already begun. Indexing and posting to the journal web site should be completed by July 2011, in time for PSA's annual meeting next year in St Louis. In total, almost 17,000 articles – well over 100,000 pages of research – will be made electronically available to – subscribers through the Legacy Project.

Legacy of research findings and data

Included in the archive to be scanned, according to the Foundation, are scores of classic papers describing fundamental research that not only helped lay the foundations for the modern poultry industry, but also provided the basis for significant advances in human health and medicine worldwide.

Examples of the science in the archive of journal articles to be scanned include: basic research on choline, methionine and folic acid; research on photoperiodism; the discovery of the slow feathering gene; basic research on unidentified growth factors leading to the discovery of several vitamins; research on the Bursa of Fabricius, leading to the discovery of 'B' cells and their function; and the development of chicken lines that provided models for the study of human thyroid disease and vitiligo.

Novus International Challenge Grant accelerated fund-raising efforts

Dr Saylor added: "When we announced the Legacy Project at PSA's Annual Meeting in July 2009, our initial estimate for its cost was $60,000. Novus International, Inc., generously agreed to provide the Foundation with a challenge grant of half of that amount, or $30,000, to match member contributions. This early commitment from such an important industry player provided the impetus we needed to drive contributions and helped us not only to achieve, but surpass, our initial fund-raising requirements, after letters for donations were distributed in February this year. The Foundation and the Poultry Science Association are extremely grateful for Novus' contribution."

Novus International's Dr Drew Giesen noted: "As a company whose business depends on access to cutting-edge research, Novus immediately recognised the value of the Legacy Project and its importance not only to current scientists and their work, but also to today's students, the scientists of tomorrow. So we were delighted to have an opportunity to help drive the project forward."

For more information about the Legacy Project, or to make a contribution, click here.