Interviews with Outstanding Authors (2022)

Posted On 2022-09-29 16:18:52

In 2022, many authors make outstanding contributions to our journal. Their articles published with us have received very well feedback in the field and stimulate a lot of discussions and new insights among the peers.

Hereby, we would like to highlight some of our outstanding authors who have been making immense efforts in their research fields, with a brief interview of their unique perspectives and insightful views as authors.

Outstanding Authors (2022)

Patrapim Sunpaweravong, Prince of Songkla University, Thailand

Izumi Kawagoe, Juntendo University, Japan

Kai-Chi Cheng, Kwong Wah Hospital, Hong Kong

Satoshi Watanabe, Niigata University, Japan

Patrapim Sunpaweravong

Dr. Patrapim Sunpaweravong currently works at the Division of Medical Oncology, Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Thailand. Her research interest includes clinical trials and translational research in lung, breast, and gastrointestinal cancers. Dr. Sunpaweravong’s recent publications have been focused on novel therapy in a paradigm of precision oncology.

Speaking of the role that academic writing plays in science, Dr. Sunpaweravong points out that results from scientific research can be introduced to peers in academic community through a well-arranged communication skill in a clear and precise manner. Novel scientific knowledge could have not been well translated and sound recognized in a wide range of academic scholars without the art of academic presentation.

For Dr. Sunpaweravong, the well-recognized pre-specified research methodology is a solid element of the key success factors of a good academic paper. Besides, a study which has been originated to solve an unmet need of a certain condition should be encouraged to be initiated and supported to finish.

Academic writing often involves evidence synthesis. Dr. Sunpaweravong shares some tips on selecting the appropriate evidence for synthesis and analysis, “Select the right tool to solve the root cause of your interested problem, with a reliable research methodology. Always utilize and apply the principle of evidence-based medicine in your research conducting process and the academic writing part.

The burden of being a doctor is heavy. Despite being a doctor, Dr. Sunpaweravong attempts to arrange a protected or secured time of her own to write papers. She says, “Prioritization of things-to-do is always a key. However, balancing is also the concept to work happily and fulfilling your dream simultaneously.

(By Nicole J. Li, Brad Li)

Izumi Kawagoe

Izumi Kawagoe, M.D., Ph.D., is a Professor and Chair in the Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Juntendo University, Japan. She obtained her M.D. degree from National Kagawa Medical University in 2000, and her Ph.D. degree from Juntendo University in 2008. Prof. Kawagoe is a thoracic anesthesiologist, engaging more than 700 thoracic cases annually. Her research interests are related to thoracic anesthesia, including both clinical study and experimental research. She received research awards from the Japan Clinical Anesthesia Society in 2016 and has acquired Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Japanese government since 2018 to present on the immune suppression effect of anesthetics. She received the Excellent Award from the Japanese Society of Anesthesiologists (JSA) in 2020 and the main result of that research was published in the Journal of Thoracic Disease in 2021. She is an international and educational delegate of JSA, a Thoracic Subspeciality Committee member of the European Association of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Anesthesia and Intensive Care, and a national coordinator of PROTHOR (protective one-lung ventilation) international research.

Prof. Kawagoe thinks the most essential element of a good academic paper is a catchy title. When reading papers, people look at the title and abstract first. A good paper usually has a well-structured abstract and a fine, catchy title. In Methods, each part should be explained accurately but not include unnecessary sentences. That is, one can understand and reperform the same research accurately by reading the Methods section.

Academic writing often involves evidence synthesis, here are some tips Prof. Kawagoe would like to share: In the technical aspect, Prof. Kawagoe investigates and collects evidence from previous studies while conducting research. She will ask the co-authors to do the same thing and they will store the data in the Cloud. She prefers to use GoodNotes application, which the users can write into using an iPad pen, cut some phrases, and paste to the note.  In the academic aspect, even though it may not become a citation of the article, Prof. Kawagoe and her co-authors still will read many reviews in and around the field, which they believe will lead to a good selection of references. What’s more, she usually writes articles related to anesthesiology, but she still reads articles related to surgery to acquire deep knowledge about the field. By acquiring broad knowledge, she is able to synthesize and analyze their research and evidence.

Prof. Kawagoe shares three reasons why she chose to publish in Translational Cancer Research (TCR). Firstly, TCR covers a wide range of fields and selects interesting articles. Secondly, she was recommended to submit to TCR by another journal editor of AME publishing company. Furthermore, through her years of experience, she feels AME Publishing Company is fair and kind. She is pleased that the citation numbers and impact factor of the journal have been increasing.

When comes to reporting guidelines (e.g. STROBE, CONSORT and PRISMA), Prof. Kawagoe thinks it is important to follow them because the authors can check for essential elements and their appropriate location in the article. She especially recommends young and new authors follow reporting guidelines step by step.

(By Teresa Lin, Brad Li)

Kai-Chi Cheng

Dr. Kai-Chi Cheng is now serving as Consultant and Head of the Division of Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Surgery, Department of Surgery, Kwong Wah Hospital, Hong Kong. He is also Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Hong Kong and the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Dr. Cheng's clinical and research interest focuses on minimally invasive hepatobiliary and pancreatic surgery. To date, he performed more than 500 pure laparoscopic hepatectomies and completed one of the largest series on laparoscopic right posterior sectionectomies reported worldwide. As a strong advocate of minimally invasive surgery, he facilitated the introduction of single-port laparoscopic surgery in Hong Kong. His recent research centred on laparoscopic major hepatectomy and long-term survival for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma after laparoscopic hepatectomy. You can find more information about Dr. Cheng on his ORCID page.

For Dr. Cheng, the most common difficulty in academic writing is the statistical methods for analyzing data. The right choice of statistical methodology and data analysis is one of the most crucial aspects of a scientific study. As a clinician with limited training in statistics, help from a statistician who knows the requirements of medical articles is critical.

It is also important to avoid biases in one's writing. Dr. Cheng stresses that we should not attempt to dig into data to get the answer we want. A proper scientific discovery should remain true without any presumptions. The most important thing to avoid biases while writing academic articles is to remain objective about the findings.

Data sharing is increasingly practiced in scientific writing because it can benefit both the author and the scientific community. Dr. Cheng believes data sharing can increase the exposure of the original study and may lead to new collaborations. Duplication of experiments can be avoided, and new insights can be gained, sparking new lines of research. However, the issue of data sharing is more delicate when human data are involved. It involves patient privacy and ethical concerns. Researchers should inform their institutions' ethics committees that they intend to make their data open when applying for ethics approval.

Last but not least, Dr. Cheng would like to say a few words to encourage other academic writers, “It is natural to feel frustrated when a paper is rejected from publications despite months or even years of hard work. However, from my perspective, rejection from journals is much more common than acceptance. We should learn from reviewers' comments. When facing rejection, we should take the reviewer's advice constructively and not hesitate to revise the paper or even completely redesign the whole study. Only practice makes perfect.”

(By Teresa Lin, Brad Li)

Satoshi Watanabe

Dr. Sataoshi Watanabe is an Associate Professor at the Department of Respiratory Medicine and Infectious Diseases at Niigata University Medical and Dental Hospital in Japan since 2021, where he began working in 2008 and worked as an Assistant Professor in the Department in 2015. In addition, he was an Assistant Professor at the Bioscience Medical Research Center and Vice Director at the Oncology Center, both at Niigata University Medical and Dental Hospital, since 2011 and 2018, respectively. He began his education at the School of Medicine at Niigata University from 1992 to 1998. He then had two rotating internships in the Niigata University Medical and Dental Hospital and the Department of Medicine at Takeda General Hospital in 1998 and 1999, respectively. He then became a resident in the Department of Medicine at Shonai Hospital in 2000. He studied at the Graduate School at Niigata University from 2001 to 2004. Afterwards, he worked at Nagaoka Red Cross Hospital in 2004 and became a Research Fellow at the Center for surgery research in the Division of Surgery at Cleveland Clinic, Ohio, the United States in 2005.

Clinicians like Dr. Watanabe find it difficult to make time to write papers because they have to write them after their hospital work is done. It is also hard to stay motivated to do research and write papers in the midst of a busy schedule.

For non-native English speakers, writing papers in English can be another challenge. Dr. Watanabe jokingly shares that he is the kind of Japanese who can speak Japanese even in sleep. But he often has nightmares in English when he works on an English paper.

From Dr. Watanabe’s perspective, authors should write with an awareness of where the novelty of their paper lies and how to convey that to the readers in an easy-to-understand manner. That is what authors have to bear in mind during the preparation of a paper.

Dr. Watanabe thinks authors should share their research data because the interpretation of data varies from researcher to researcher. By looking at the raw data, he believes the readers can more accurately understand what happened in the study.

(By Teresa Lin, Brad Li)