A new type of journal article from the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery

The Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery (JFMS) is pioneering a new article type in order to promote key research and, ultimately, improve the health and welfare of cats worldwide.


The articles, JFMS Premier Reviews, are pivotal, state-of-the-art review papers. Authored by outstanding international scientists, these articles are practitioner-relevant, also containing up-to-the-minute information for the resident/researcher and are freely available.

But what is their ultimate goal? How are the research areas selected, and what impact are the reviews already having? We’ve spoken to Margaret Melling, Managing Editor of the JFMS, to find out more:

Could you explain why JFMS introduced Premier Reviews?

To set the scene, let me briefly introduce you to the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery. JFMS to its followers and readers, and J Feline Med Surg for indexing purposes, is currently in its 18th volume, and is the only veterinary journal dedicated to cats. JFMS is the official journal of two dynamic veterinary societies: the International Society of Feline Medicine, based in the UK, and the American Association of Veterinary Practitioners, based in the USA. Between them, they offer membership to a feline veterinary community extending to around 60 countries. We like to do things a little differently, and month on month alternate our ‘Classic’ editions, containing peer-reviewed research, with our ‘Clinical Practice’ editions, containing review articles aimed at supporting day-to-day clinical work with cats. So, two different formats, produced in two quite different ways with two distinct looks, and aimed at two audiences – clinical researchers and veterinary clinicians.

Premier Reviews were the brain child of the JFMS team at large and were launched last year specifically to engage the two audience groups. Free to access, these invited reviews are evidence-based, state-of-the-art publications. We ask authors to highlight areas of immediate impact to clinical practice; and, equally, also to emphasise current research evidence and knowledge gaps.

How do you select a Premier Review?

There are two (of course!) principal considerations: we want authors who are international experts and we want subjects that are relevant, timely, and challenging. We ask our 80-strong Editorial Board to keep us up to date and aware of topics in their respective areas that would be a good focus for a pivotal state-of-the-art review.

What impact do you think these Premier Reviews have?

We know that they are being well read. While we don’t yet have a full year’s worth of data to analyse for each individual article, we know that the three Premier Reviews published so far have together been downloaded 7258 times to date. This compares with an average of 653 downloads for a ‘Clinical Practice’ review and 233 downloads for a ‘Classic’ research article in 2015. We also know that they have created a buzz on social media. The review on antiviral chemotherapy (see below), in particular, has achieved an article level metrics (Altmetric) score of 54 – making it the 7th highest ranking of the 837 JFMS articles with an Altmetric score.

Ultimately, Premier Reviews are an additional tool in helping the societies, via their flagship journal, to improve the health and welfare of cats worldwide.

Read the first three JFMS Premier Reviews below:

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