A peer-reviewed quarterly journal, The Ocular Surface (TOS) features concise, state-of-the-art, referenced review articles to elucidate the vast body of findings in this rapidly evolving field. Its purview ranges from molecular biology to surgery, encompassing lacrimal, lid, and ocular surface physiology, pathology, pharmacology, and medical/surgical therapeutic interventions. TOS also publishes select original research reports and articles describing innovative techniques and technology. Descriptions of desired content and requirements for articles are described below under the section headings: Review Articles; Original Research Articles; Innovative Techniques and Technology. All manuscripts undergo peer review by two or more reviewers. Authors are asked to revise their manuscripts, addressing all the reviewers' suggestions or explaining their reasons for declining to do so.
Most reviews are written at the invitation of the editors, but independent proposals of articles are welcomed. To propose a review, please email a brief description of the intended review to Editor-in-Chief J. Daniel Nelson, MD, FACS (email@example.com) and Managing Editor Susan Erickson (firstname.lastname@example.org). If the editors consider the topic to be appropriate, you will be asked to submit a detailed outline and tentative bibliography for peer review.
Reviews should follow a topic-based outline, labeled with headings and subheadings [I,A,1,a, (1), (a)]. A TOS review should not be a general overview of a topic, but rather an in-depth, literature-based, critical review that emphasizes areas of new information, controversies, etc. The authors' own findings may be cited in the context of findings published in the literature, but original work should not be the focus of the review. The readers will have various levels of understanding about specific topic areas, so it is important for authors to provide the background, definitions, and explanations necessary to enhance understanding. Illustrative figures and diagrams are very helpful.Length
Appropriate length is usually about 10-14 printed pages (equivalent to about 24-34 double-spaced manuscript pages, including references, figures and tables).References
A review article should not cite all publications relevant to the topic of the article; rather, the references should be selected according to their importance and usefulness in clarifying, documenting, and providing historical background. Multiple similar references to document a statement are usually not needed.The appropriate number of references varies according to the length of the article and the complexity of the topic. The number of references in a 12-14 page review article (20-30 double-spaced typed pages of text) should seldom exceed 150, although there may be exceptions to this guideline. Authors are encouraged to request advice from the editors if it seems that more references are appropriate.
The review manuscript should state the method of literature selection, specifying search words and data bases used, as well as the date of search; number of articles retrieved; criteria for selecting articles for inclusion in review; criteria for excluding articles.Innovative Techniques and Technology
Evolving technologies and techniques in both the basic and clinical arenas often do not have sufficient published peer-reviewed data to permit a comprehensive review for inclusion in the basic science, clinical research, or clinical practice sections of The Ocular Surface. Nonetheless, there is a value to both researcher and clinician in being aware of the potential applications and pitfalls of such new technology. In order to inform our readership of evolving technologies and techniques, publication of articles describing such options with adequate peer review is appropriate.Appropriate length for ITT articles is usually about 6-8 printed pages, including figures and references (equivalent of about 9-14 double-spaced typed pages).
- 1. Technologies or techniques should provide a significant insight or advance in the basic or clinical investigation or treatment of the ocular surface.
- 2. Manuscripts should critically describe outcome data, not just a proposed method or technique.
- 3. Figures or diagrams to illustrate the application or interpretation of the technique should be included.
- 4. Appropriate references to support conclusions and claims should be provided, even if the number of such references is limited.
- 5. Commercial bias must be avoided, and the value of the technology/technique must be factually supported, not speculative.
- 6. The author must fully disclose all proprietary and financial interests or support.
- 7. An attempt will be made to include such articles in issues that have a corresponding related topic in any review of the three major sections of the journal.
- Brief introduction describing purpose of the procedure, other procedures used for the same purpose, and advantages of (need for) the new procedure.
- Description of the technique, including theoretical basis and steps in performing (including figures and diagrams).
- Outcome data
The goal of including original research articles in TOS is to provide rapid, peer-reviewed publication of high-quality, high-impact information that holds promise of significantly advancing the understanding of the ocular surface. The work should present new conceptual frameworks or novel research findings that challenge or enhance our current approach to clinical practice or research. To this end, the research must:
- 1. Be original research of the author that is conducted with sound scientific method
- 2. Provide new information that answers a specific question regarding ocular surface health or disease
- 3. Provide new, mechanistically based information
- 4. Be presented according to the author guidelines and format listed below
- 5. Be performed according to tenets of good laboratory and clinical practice: a. If involving laboratory animals, the work should conform to the ARVO guidelines for humane use of such animals; b. If involving human subjects, the work should conform to the Declaration of Helsinki and provide for informed consent in an IRB approved protocol; c. If involving a clinical trial, should be registered with a clinical trial registry
- 6. Be presented in a clear, logical manner with sufficient detail to be reproducible by other researchers
- 7. Present rationale and statistical analysis of data to support conclusions
- 1. Title Page: (As above under "Manuscript Preparation")
- 2. Structured abstract: A structured abstract of fewer than 250 words is required for original research articles and should be arranged under the following headings: Purpose, Methods, Results, and Conclusions. Abbreviations should be defined at first mention, Do not include references. The abstract must be included as part of the main manuscript file.
- 3. Text: The Ocular Surface recommends a 3,500 or fewer word count, excluding title page, legends, and references. The text should be double-spaced.In a brief Introduction, provide the research rationale and objectives without extensively reviewing the literature.In the Methods section, describe the experimental design, subjects used, and procedures followed. Previously published procedures should be identified by reference only. Provide sufficient detail to enable others to duplicate the research. Use standard chemical or nonproprietary pharmaceutical nomenclature. In parentheses, identify specific sources by brand name, company, city, and state or country. A description of the statistical analysis techniques should be included.
If human subjects were involved in the investigation, the Methods section must confirm that: (1) the research followed the tenets of the Declaration of Helsinki; (2) informed consent was obtained from the subjects after explanation of the nature and possible consequences of the study; and (3) where applicable, the research was approved by the institutional human experimentation committee or institutional review board (IRB).If experimental animals were used in the investigation, the Methods section must confirm adherence to the ARVO Statement for the Use of Animals in Ophthalmic and Vision Research and, where applicable, approval by the appropriate animal research review board.
Present the Results with a minimum of discussion. Cite all tables and figures in numerical order. Limit the Discussion to statistically significant data and their limitations. Do not reiterate results.
- 4. Acknowledgments: Acknowledgments should be written in the third person and be limited to colleagues and research assistants. Acknowledgments are not meant to recognize appreciation for personal or manuscript production support. Including dedications to individuals or groups is not allowed.
- 5. References (as described above under "Manuscript Preparation")
Manuscripts must be submitted through EVISE: https://www.evise.com/profile/#/THEOCULARSURFACE/login
You can use this list to carry out a final check of your submission before you send it to the journal for review. Please check the relevant section in this Guide for Authors for more details.
One author has been designated as the corresponding author with contact details:
• E-mail address
• Full postal address
• Include keywords
• All figures (include relevant captions)
• All tables (including titles, description, footnotes)
• Ensure all figure and table citations in the text match the files provided
• Indicate clearly if color should be used for any figures in print
Graphical Abstracts / Highlights files (where applicable)
Supplemental files (where applicable)
• Manuscript has been 'spell checked' and 'grammar checked'
• All references mentioned in the Reference List are cited in the text, and vice versa
• Permission has been obtained for use of copyrighted material from other sources (including the Internet)
• Relevant declarations of interest have been made
• Journal policies detailed in this guide have been reviewed
• Referee suggestions and contact details provided, based on journal requirements
Please see our information pages on Ethics in publishing and Ethical guidelines for journal publication.
Human and animal rights
If the work involves the use of human subjects, the author should ensure that the work described has been carried out in accordance with The Code of Ethics of the World Medical Association (Declaration of Helsinki) for experiments involving humans; Uniform Requirements for manuscripts submitted to Biomedical journals. Authors should include a statement in the manuscript that informed consent was obtained for experimentation with human subjects. The privacy rights of human subjects must always be observed.
Declaration of interest
All authors must disclose any financial and personal relationships with other people or organizations that could inappropriately influence (bias) their work. Examples of potential conflicts of interest include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, paid expert testimony, patent applications/registrations, and grants or other funding. If there are no conflicts of interest then please state this: 'Conflicts of interest: none'. More information.
Submission of an article implies that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis or as an electronic preprint, see 'Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication' section of our ethics policy for more information), that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere in the same form, in English or in any other language, including electronically without the written consent of the copyright-holder. To verify originality, your article may be checked by the originality detection service CrossCheck.
Changes to authorship
Authors are expected to consider carefully the list and order of authors before submitting their manuscript and provide the definitive list of authors at the time of the original submission. Any addition, deletion or rearrangement of author names in the authorship list should be made only before the manuscript has been accepted and only if approved by the journal Editor. To request such a change, the Editor must receive the following from the corresponding author: (a) the reason for the change in author list and (b) written confirmation (e-mail, letter) from all authors that they agree with the addition, removal or rearrangement. In the case of addition or removal of authors, this includes confirmation from the author being added or removed.
Only in exceptional circumstances will the Editor consider the addition, deletion or rearrangement of authors after the manuscript has been accepted. While the Editor considers the request, publication of the manuscript will be suspended. If the manuscript has already been published in an online issue, any requests approved by the Editor will result in a corrigendum.
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As an author you (or your employer or institution) have certain rights to reuse your work. More information.
Find out how you can share your research published in Elsevier journals.
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Elsevier has established a number of agreements with funding bodies which allow authors to comply with their funder's open access policies. Some funding bodies will reimburse the author for the Open Access Publication Fee. Details of existing agreements are available online.
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Regardless of how you choose to publish your article, the journal will apply the same peer review criteria and acceptance standards.For open access articles, permitted third party (re)use is defined by the following Creative Commons user licenses:
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND)
For non-commercial purposes, lets others distribute and copy the article, and to include in a collective work (such as an anthology), as long as they credit the author(s) and provided they do not alter or modify the article.
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Authors can share their research in a variety of different ways and Elsevier has a number of green open access options available. We recommend authors see our green open access page for further information. Authors can also self-archive their manuscripts immediately and enable public access from their institution's repository after an embargo period. This is the version that has been accepted for publication and which typically includes author-incorporated changes suggested during submission, peer review and in editor-author communications. Embargo period: For subscription articles, an appropriate amount of time is needed for journals to deliver value to subscribing customers before an article becomes freely available to the public. This is the embargo period and it begins from the date the article is formally published online in its final and fully citable form.
This journal has an embargo period of 12 months.
Elsevier Publishing Campus
The Elsevier Publishing Campus (www.publishingcampus.com) is an online platform offering free lectures, interactive training and professional advice to support you in publishing your research. The College of Skills training offers modules on how to prepare, write and structure your article and explains how editors will look at your paper when it is submitted for publication. Use these resources, and more, to ensure that your submission will be the best that you can make it.
Please write your text in good English (American or British usage is accepted, but not a mixture of these). Authors who feel their English language manuscript may require editing to eliminate possible grammatical or spelling errors and to conform to correct scientific English may wish to use the English Language Editing service available from Elsevier's WebShop.
Informed consent and patient details
Studies on patients or volunteers require ethics committee approval and informed consent, which should be documented in the paper. Appropriate consents, permissions and releases must be obtained where an author wishes to include case details or other personal information or images of patients and any other individuals in an Elsevier publication. Written consents must be retained by the author and copies of the consents or evidence that such consents have been obtained must be provided to Elsevier on request. For more information, please review the Elsevier Policy on the Use of Images or Personal Information of Patients or other Individuals. Unless you have written permission from the patient (or, where applicable, the next of kin), the personal details of any patient included in any part of the article and in any supplementary materials (including all illustrations and videos) must be removed before submission.
Our online submission system guides you stepwise through the process of entering your article details and uploading your files. The system converts your article files to a single PDF file used in the peer-review process. Editable files (e.g., Word, LaTeX) are required to typeset your article for final publication. All correspondence, including notification of the Editor's decision and requests for revision, is sent by e-mail.
Submit your article
Please submit your article via EVISE at https://www.evise.com/profile/#/THEOCULARSURFACE/login.
Please submit the names and institutional e-mail addresses of several potential referees. For more details, visit our Support site. Note that the editor retains the sole right to decide whether or not the suggested reviewers are used.
Use of word processing software
It is important that the file be saved in the native format of the word processor used. The text should be in single-column format. Keep the layout of the text as simple as possible. Most formatting codes will be removed and replaced on processing the article. In particular, do not use the word processor's options to justify text or to hyphenate words. However, do use bold face, italics, subscripts, superscripts etc. When preparing tables, if you are using a table grid, use only one grid for each individual table and not a grid for each row. If no grid is used, use tabs, not spaces, to align columns. The electronic text should be prepared in a way very similar to that of conventional manuscripts (see also the Guide to Publishing with Elsevier). Note that source files of figures, tables and text graphics will be required whether or not you embed your figures in the text. See also the section on Electronic artwork.
To avoid unnecessary errors you are strongly advised to use the 'spell-check' and 'grammar-check' functions of your word processor.
Subdivision - unnumbered sections
Divide your article into clearly defined sections. Each subsection is given a brief heading. Each heading should appear on its own separate line. Subsections should be used as much as possible when cross-referencing text: refer to the subsection by heading as opposed to simply 'the text'.
State the objectives of the work and provide an adequate background, avoiding a detailed literature survey or a summary of the results. Results
Results should be clear and concise.
This should explore the significance of the results of the work, not repeat them. A combined Results and Discussion section is often appropriate. Avoid extensive citations and discussion of published literature.
The main conclusions of the study may be presented in a short Conclusions section, which may stand alone or form a subsection of a Discussion or Results and Discussion section.
If there is more than one appendix, they should be identified as A, B, etc. Formulae and equations in appendices should be given separate numbering: Eq. (A.1), Eq. (A.2), etc.; in a subsequent appendix, Eq. (B.1) and so on. Similarly for tables and figures: Table A.1; Fig. A.1, etc.
• Title. Concise and informative. Titles are often used in information-retrieval systems. Avoid abbreviations and formulae where possible.
• Author names and affiliations. Please clearly indicate the given name(s) and family name(s) of each author and check that all names are accurately spelled. Name should be followed by academic degree(s) and superscript numeral(s) corresponding to institution(s) named in footnote.
• Short title.Provide "short" title for use in running head.
• Title page footnotes.List institutional affiliation(s) of each author preceded by superscript number. Affiliation should be institution where work was performed. If the author has moved, new address should be given as a separate footnote.
Provide appropriate disclosures or insert statement: "The authors have no commercial or proprietary interest in any concept or product described in this article."
State sources of support.
• Corresponding author. Give name, complete address, telephone and fax numbers, and Email address.
A structured abstract, by means of appropriate headings, should provide the context or background for the research and should state its purpose, basic procedures (selection of study subjects or laboratory animals, observational and analytical methods), main findings (giving specific effect sizes and their statistical significance, if possible), and principal conclusions. It should emphasize new and important aspects of the study or observations.
Immediately after the abstract, provide a maximum of 6 keywords, using American spelling and avoiding general and plural terms and multiple concepts (avoid, for example, 'and', 'of'). Be sparing with abbreviations: only abbreviations firmly established in the field may be eligible. These keywords will be used for indexing purposes.
Define abbreviations that are not standard in this field in a footnote to be placed on the first page of the article. Such abbreviations that are unavoidable in the abstract must be defined at their first mention there, as well as in the footnote. Ensure consistency of abbreviations throughout the article.
Collate acknowledgements in a separate section at the end of the article before the references and do not, therefore, include them on the title page, as a footnote to the title or otherwise. List here those individuals who provided help during the research (e.g., providing language help, writing assistance or proof reading the article, etc.).
It is not necessary to include detailed descriptions on the program or type of grants and awards. When funding is from a block grant or other resources available to a university, college, or other research institution, submit the name of the institute or organization that provided the funding.If no funding has been provided for the research, please include the following sentence:
This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.Units
Follow internationally accepted rules and conventions: use the international system of units (SI). If other units are mentioned, please give their equivalent in SI. P values should omit the leading "0," i.e., P=.05" not "P=0.05."
Footnotes should be used sparingly. Number them consecutively throughout the article. Many word processors can build footnotes into the text, and this feature may be used. Otherwise, please indicate the position of footnotes in the text and list the footnotes themselves separately at the end of the article. Do not include footnotes in the Reference list.
Whilst it is accepted that authors sometimes need to manipulate images for clarity, manipulation for purposes of deception or fraud will be seen as scientific ethical abuse and will be dealt with accordingly. For graphical images, this journal is applying the following policy: no specific feature within an image may be enhanced, obscured, moved, removed, or introduced. Adjustments of brightness, contrast, or color balance are acceptable if and as long as they do not obscure or eliminate any information present in the original. Nonlinear adjustments (e.g. changes to gamma settings) must be disclosed in the figure legend.
• Make sure you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.
• Embed the used fonts if the application provides that option.
• Aim to use the following fonts in your illustrations: Arial, Courier, Times New Roman, Symbol, or use fonts that look similar.
• Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
• Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files.
• Provide captions to illustrations separately.
• Size the illustrations close to the desired dimensions of the published version.
• Submit each illustration as a separate file.
A detailed guide on electronic artwork is available.
You are urged to visit this site; some excerpts from the detailed information are given here.
If your electronic artwork is created in a Microsoft Office application (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) then please supply 'as is' in the native document format.
Regardless of the application used other than Microsoft Office, when your electronic artwork is finalized, please 'Save as' or convert the images to one of the following formats (note the resolution requirements for line drawings, halftones, and line/halftone combinations given below):
EPS (or PDF): Vector drawings, embed all used fonts.
TIFF (or JPEG): Color or grayscale photographs (halftones), keep to a minimum of 300 dpi.
TIFF (or JPEG): Bitmapped (pure black & white pixels) line drawings, keep to a minimum of 1000 dpi.
TIFF (or JPEG): Combinations bitmapped line/half-tone (color or grayscale), keep to a minimum of 500 dpi.
Please do not:
• Supply files that are optimized for screen use (e.g., GIF, BMP, PICT, WPG); these typically have a low number of pixels and limited set of colors;
• Supply files that are too low in resolution;
• Submit graphics that are disproportionately large for the content.
Please make sure that artwork files are in an acceptable format (TIFF (or JPEG), EPS (or PDF) or MS Office files) and with the correct resolution. If, together with your accepted article, you submit usable color figures then Elsevier will ensure, at no additional charge, that these figures will appear in color online (e.g., ScienceDirect and other sites) in addition to color reproduction in print. Further information on the preparation of electronic artwork.
Elsevier's WebShop offers Illustration Services to authors preparing to submit a manuscript but concerned about the quality of the images accompanying their article. Elsevier's expert illustrators can produce scientific, technical and medical-style images, as well as a full range of charts, tables and graphs. Image 'polishing' is also available, where our illustrators take your image(s) and improve them to a professional standard. Please visit the website to find out more.
Ensure that each illustration has a caption. Supply captions separately, not attached to the figure. A caption should comprise a brief title (not on the figure itself) and a description of the illustration. Keep text in the illustrations themselves to a minimum but explain all symbols and abbreviations used.
Please submit tables as editable text and not as images. Tables can be placed either next to the relevant text in the article, or on separate page(s) at the end. Number tables consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text and place any table notes below the table body. Be sparing in the use of tables and ensure that the data presented in them do not duplicate results described elsewhere in the article. Please avoid using vertical rules. Citation in text
Please ensure that every reference cited in the text is also present in the reference list (and vice versa). Any references cited in the abstract must be given in full. Unpublished results and personal communications are not recommended in the reference list, but may be mentioned in the text. If these references are included in the reference list they should follow the standard reference style of the journal and should include a substitution of the publication date with either 'Unpublished results' or 'Personal communication'. Citation of a reference as 'in press' implies that the item has been accepted for publication.
Increased discoverability of research and high quality peer review are ensured by online links to the sources cited. In order to allow us to create links to abstracting and indexing services, such as Scopus, CrossRef and PubMed, please ensure that data provided in the references are correct. Please note that incorrect surnames, journal/book titles, publication year and pagination may prevent link creation. When copying references, please be careful as they may already contain errors. Use of the DOI is encouraged.
As a minimum, the full URL should be given and the date when the reference was last accessed. Any further information, if known (DOI, author names, dates, reference to a source publication, etc.), should also be given. Web references can be listed separately (e.g., after the reference list) under a different heading if desired, or can be included in the reference list.
Most Elsevier journals have their reference template available in many of the most popular reference management software products. These include all products that support Citation Style Language styles, such as Mendeley and Zotero, as well as EndNote. Using the word processor plug-ins from these products, authors only need to select the appropriate journal template when preparing their article, after which citations and bibliographies will be automatically formatted in the journal's style. If no template is yet available for this journal, please follow the format of the sample references and citations as shown in this Guide.
Users of Mendeley Desktop can easily install the reference style for this journal by clicking the following link:
When preparing your manuscript, you will then be able to select this style using the Mendeley plug-ins for Microsoft Word or LibreOffice.
References should be numbered consecutively and typed double-spaced. Journal titles should be abbreviated, without periods, according to the Index Medicus style. Citation of abstracts may be acceptable if 1) the cited report is not available in full-length form, and 2) the abstract is published in an indexed journal (e.g., ARVO abstract published Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci). In the text, statements referenced by abstracts should be acknowledged as such, e.g., "Preliminary findings suggest" Complete information should be given for each reference, as shown below. Publications with 1-4 authors should give all names; publications with more than four authors should name the first three followed by "et al." Author last names are followed by initials without commas or periods.
1. Jones JP. Pitfalls in the design of clinical trials for anti-dry eye agents. Ocul Surf 2015;13:2-16
2. Smith PS, Williams LC. Effects of artificial tear solutions on osmolarity of dry eyes (abstract). Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2015;59, ARVO E-Abstract 4015
3. Charles PO, van Housen Q Jr, Duchen PX, et al (eds): Cornea, conjunctiva, lid: new concepts. New York, NY, Random House, 2015
Chapter in book
4. Aay OK: Effect of estrogen medications on the cornea, in Charles PO, van Housen Q Jr, Duchen PX, et al (eds): Cornea, conjunctiva, lid: new concepts. New York, NY, Random House, 2015, pp 234-25
Journal names should be abbreviated according to the List of Title Word Abbreviations.
The journal encourages authors to create an AudioSlides presentation with their published article. AudioSlides are brief, webinar-style presentations that are shown next to the online article on ScienceDirect. This gives authors the opportunity to summarize their research in their own words and to help readers understand what the paper is about. More information and examples are available. Authors of this journal will automatically receive an invitation e-mail to create an AudioSlides presentation after acceptance of their paper.
One set of page proofs (as PDF files) will be sent by e-mail to the corresponding author (if we do not have an e-mail address then paper proofs will be sent by post) or, a link will be provided in the e-mail so that authors can download the files themselves. Elsevier now provides authors with PDF proofs which can be annotated; for this you will need to download the free Adobe Reader, version 9 (or higher). Instructions on how to annotate PDF files will accompany the proofs (also given online). The exact system requirements are given at the Adobe site.
If you do not wish to use the PDF annotations function, you may list the corrections (including replies to the Query Form) and return them to Elsevier in an e-mail. Please list your corrections quoting line number. If, for any reason, this is not possible, then mark the corrections and any other comments (including replies to the Query Form) on a printout of your proof and scan the pages and return via e-mail. Please use this proof only for checking the typesetting, editing, completeness and correctness of the text, tables and figures. Significant changes to the article as accepted for publication will only be considered at this stage with permission from the Editor. We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately. It is important to ensure that all corrections are sent back to us in one communication: please check carefully before replying, as inclusion of any subsequent corrections cannot be guaranteed. Proofreading is solely your responsibility.
The corresponding author will, at no cost, receive a customized Share Link providing 50 days free access to the final published version of the article on ScienceDirect. The Share Link can be used for sharing the article via any communication channel, including email and social media. For an extra charge, paper offprints can be ordered via the offprint order form which is sent once the article is accepted for publication. Both corresponding and co-authors may order offprints at any time via Elsevier's Webshop. Corresponding authors who have published their article open access do not receive a Share Link as their final published version of the article is available open access on ScienceDirect and can be shared through the article DOI link.
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