From An International Nutritionist

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<ul><li><p>as possible could become acquainted with it and to determine its acceptability and usef u Iness. </p><p>It had been decided that the journal would not carry advertising. The lack of advertising revenue meant that the cost of the journal had to be kept as low as possible to make it avail- able to a wide audience at a reasonable sub- scription rate. This meant that The Nutrition Foundation would continue to subsidize it. A subscription rate within the reach of students, teachers and writers would help to assure an interested readership. The subscription list rapidly grew and many of the articles were republished in Spanish and Portuguese in Latin America where they made important contributions to the spread of nutrition knowledge. </p><p>There have been many changes in Nutri- tion Reviews over the years to meet the changing times and advances in nutrition knowledge. It now has an attractive format, and the presentations begin with a signed re- view article. There is a section on clinical nu- trition and one on experimental nutrition for easier location of articles of special interest to the reader. A new historical section which re- prints condensations of Nutrition Classics provides interesting and stimulating reading of early original contributions which are large- ly unknown to the casual student of nutrition today. In 1978, Dr. Olson introduced a new </p><p>section entitled Clinical Nutrition Cases. This provides interesting material for every reader of Nutrition Reviews, and is of particu- lar interest and value to physicians. </p><p>It is difficult to assess the impact of Nutri- tion Reviews on nutrition education in the U.S. Its continued large subscription list indi- cates that it is meeting a need. It is a unique publication in that, although subsidized by the food industry, there has never been any com- mercial influence or bias in its articles. The editor and the editorial committee have free choice in the subjects and contents of the arti- cles. I do not know of any other publication where articles of the type printed in Nutrition Reviews can be found. </p><p>Over the years, the journal has undoubted- ly supplied reliable background interpretation for teachers. It must have influenced the preparation of articles for the public media. It must have helped thousands of students, leaders and the educated public to make sound interpretations of research reports that are often confusing. It has probably helped students locate responsible sources of fur- ther information. </p><p>In my opinion, the Journal has been and continues to be a strong force in combating quackery, misinformation and misinterpreta- tion. Nutrition Reviews is one of the greatest public service projects that the food industry has ever supported in this country. </p><p>FROM AN INTERNATIONAL NUTRITIONIST </p><p>James S. Dinning, Ph.D. </p><p>The complete run of Nutrition Reviews occu- pies the most prominent and readily accessi- ble spot in my office library. It has been so </p><p>since my first year of graduate school when it represented the major portion of my library. In looking back on a career that spans most of the 40-year history of Nutrition Reviews, I find that although my professional responsibilities and day-to-day activities have varied consid- erably, the journal has always served as my information backstop. The best way I know to </p><p>Dr. Dinning is a Research Scientist and Editor of The Journal of Nutrition, Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, University of Florida, Gaines- ville, FL 3261 7. </p><p>320 NUTRITION REVIEWS/VOL. 40, NO. 1 l/NOVEMBER 1982 </p></li><li><p>illustrate the impact of 40 years of Nutrition Reviews on the nutrition community is to de- scribe what it has meant to me through sever- al somewhat different careers from graduate school until now. I beg the readers indul- gence in this personal reminiscing. I am sim- ply using myself as a sample of one. I expect most of my peers can recount similar experiences. </p><p>Graduate students are forced to give semi- nars, generally a terrifying and unforgetable experience. The first problem is selecting a topic. For my first outing, I started with three reviews in the January 1946 issue of Nutrition Reviews. These dealt with the confusion sur- rounding substances in liver which stimulated the growth of certain microorganisms, pre- vented anemia in chicks and cured vitamin M- deficient monkeys. These reviews and the subsequent literature search led to my taking a job with Paul Day at the University of Arkan- sas School of Medicine and a lifelong interest in folic acid. Throughout the years, my stu- dents have relied on Nutrition Reviews not only as a starting point for seminars and term papers, but as an excellent source to bone up for the various examinations we subject them to in their quest for a degree. </p><p>During my years as a faculty member in a medical school, we included basic nutrition as an important component of the biochemistry course. Since the biochemistry textbooks were of little help in preparation of these lec- tures, we relied on Nutrition Reviews as our primary source. This was done with confi- dence because having served as an associ- ate editor of Nutrition Reviews, I was familiar with their operating procedures. Each associ- ate editor was assigned a few journals to cov- er and prepare reviews on topics of interest to nutritional scientists as they appeared in cur- rent issues of the assigned journals. This is, to my knowledge, a unique way of running a review journal and results in complete cover- age of the nutrition literature. One of the ma- jor strengths of Nutrition Reviews is that it is the. best place to look for the current state of knowledge on any topic of nutritional con- cern. This then makes it an ideal teaching tool, particularly at the professional and grad- uate level. </p><p>The next 15 years of my professional life were spent in Southeast Asia. We were in- volved in university development which in- cluded strong programs in basic and applied nutrition. Scientific journals were hard to come by and eight or nine months late in ar- riving since most were shipped by sea. One journal which we brought in by air was Nutri- tion Reviews. It served as a basic source of information for both faculty and students and was used as a textbook in a graduate nutrition course I developed and taught at Mahidol University in Bangkok. In visiting many uni- versities and research institutes in develop- ing countries, I have found that while the libraries are generally sparce, most of them contain Nutrition Reviews. The journal has made an international impact and in this con- nection it is interesting to note that there are currently contributing editors from the United Kingdom, Asia, India and Latin America. </p><p>In my present position, a major responsibil- ity is as editor of The Journal of Nutrition. In my opinion, the single most significant factor influencing the quality of a scientific journal is the reviews manuscripts receive. Not only the decision whether to accept or reject but also the needed revision of acceptable manu- scripts is the crucial step. These judgments were obviously only as good as the reviewers who make them. The Journal of Nutrition has an outstanding editorial board to serve this function but due to work load and breadth of scientific areas in submitted manuscripts, it is necessary to look outside the board for ap- proximately half the reviewers. It requires de- tective work to identify the most appropriate individuals. I regularly turn to Nutrition Re- views for help because what is needed is the investigator at the forefront of research in the area and this can usually be determined from recent reviews on the subject. The very cur- rent nature of Nutrition Reviews makes it par- ticularly appropriate for this purpose. </p><p>What I have attempted to do is illustrate what Nutrition Reviews has done for me as a graduate student, university professor, inter- nationalist and editor of a scientific journal. These activities have included teaching, re- search and administration pointing out the unique and important role Nutrition Reviews </p><p>NUTRITION REVIEWSNOL. 40, NO. II/NOVEMBER 1982 329 </p></li><li><p>can play in all aspects of the professional life of a nutritional scientist. As I said at the out- set, I have drawn on my own experiences simply as examples of what the journal has done for our profession. I am sure most read- ers can give additional and more lucid examples. </p><p>Nutrition Reviews has played a unique and crucial role in the development of nutritional science by documenting the remarkable ad- </p><p>vances made over the past 40 years. Dr. Charles Glen King wrote in 1942 in the for- ward to the first issue, The publication of Nu- trition Reviews has been undertaken, therefore, to provide an authoritative, unbi- ased, editorially interpreted review of the worlds current research progress in the sci- ence of nutrition. </p><p>It has done exactly that. </p><p>FROM A UNIVERSITY PROFESSOR </p><p>A.E. Harper, Ph.D. </p><p>For 40 years, Nutrition Reviews has been offer- ing timely critiques of articles from current jour- nals prepared by a group of, usually young, active research scientists. What has been the impact of the publication? </p><p>I am inclined to think that the greatest impact of Nutrition Reviews has been on those who have been selected over the years as Contrib- uting Editors. They have been required to do the equivalent of a journal club report periodi- cally for a wide audience that includes many critical individuals-among them, those whose papers were reviewed and, more particularly, those who thought that their papers should have been included in the review. It is difficult to overestimate the value of being required to as- sess research articles critically, fairly and ob- jectively on a regular basis for publication. If a new Contributing Editor does not realize it at the start, he/she soon learns that misinterpreta- tion of an authors results or an unjustified criti- cal statement brings a quick comment that requires a response. The reviewer can rest as- sured that the editor will require a defense for any statement that is questioned, even though </p><p>Dr. Harper is Professor of Nutritional Science and Biochemistty, Department of Biochemistry, 21 6 Bio- chemistry Building, University of Wisconsin, Madi- son, WI 53706. </p><p>only a few of the comments he receives may be published. This expeiience has provided many young nutrition scientists with an invaluable education in evaluating original research pa- pers critically. </p><p>The articles have also had an impact on those who view the critiques from the other side. Who among us has not picked up a new issue of Nutrition Reviews wondering what the editors have selected for this issue? If they have selected subjects that impinge on our re- search areas there is the challenge of assess- ing the merit of the review-an exercise in critical evaluation for the reader. This, too, I expect has had a substantial impact by stimu- lating investigators to pit their critical faculties against those of the Contributing Editors, both in the selection of articles that are pertinent and in evaluating the interpretation of those select- ed for review. </p><p>As Karl Popper, British philosopher of sci- ence, has emphasized, the objectivity of sci- ence has nothing to do with the objectivity of scientists. Scientists are as emotional and as inclined to be biased as any other group in society. It is the method they use in their en- deavors that makes them, or at least their inter- pretations, objective. They are required to publish their methods and their reasoning in sufficient detail so their results can be repro- </p><p>330 NUTRITION REVlEWS/VOL. 40, NO. 1 l/NOVEMBER 1982 </p></li></ul>