EUCHIS Newsletter #49 published, containing our opinion paper on “Quality criteria for publications dealing with chitins or chitosans”

Today, the latest Newsletter of the European Chitin Society EUCHIS was published. It contains an ‘opinion paper’ from our group which is based on the “Studienarbeit” of our 2020 undergraduates Carolin Potthoff, Lasse Middendorf, and Jonas Sobierey. They had performed a publication survey on papers dealing with structure-function relationships of bioactive chitosans, supported by our post-doctoral researchers Dr. Carolin Richter, Dr. Philipp Lemke, and Dr. Jasper Wattjes. Dr. Eva Regel, then a doctoral candidate in our group, finally summarized the data, created some graphs to visualize them, and drafted a short version for publication. The idea had been to critically check the quality of the papers, on the one hand in general, but in particular concerning the details given for the chitosan or chitosans used in the studies. Our expectation had been that all too often, the authors would have used just any ‘chitosan’ off the shelf, without bothering about any structural details such as the degrees of polymerisation and acetylation. Unfortunately, out expectation was met, though not quite as badly as we had feared. Still, we feel that this aspect needs to receive more attention by authors, editors, and referees, and this is why we are trying to start a debate within the chitin & chitosan scientific community. We will see whether there will be any feedback to our opinion paper in the Newsletter.