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PLOS BLOGS Speaking of Medicine and Health

Launch of the PLOS Pediatric Medicine Collection

PLOS Medicine Editors Rhona MacDonald and Amy Ross on the launch of the new PLOS Pediatric Medicine Collection and the upcoming Pediatric Academic Societies and Asian Society for Pediatric Research Meeting, where PLOS will be in attendance.

Image credits (clockwise from top left): Matt Erasmus,; D.C. Atty,; Frank Douwes,; U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt Eric T. Sheler, Wikimedia Commons

To coincide with PLOS Medicine’s participation in the Pediatric Academic Societies and Asian Society for Pediatric Research joint meeting (PAS/ASPR 14) in Vancouver on May 3-6, PLOS is delighted to announce the launch of a new collection on pediatric medicine. This collection collates key research and commentary relating to the health of children that has been published across the PLOS journals over the past year.

The Pediatric Medicine Collection covers children of all ages, includes those living in high, middle, and low-income countries, and covers the main conditions affecting children world-wide.

Unsurprisingly, HIV and malaria play a key role: For example, Marie-Quitterie Picat and colleagues encouragingly show that young HIV-positive, ART-naïve children can achieve high CD4 counts in later life, provided ART is initiated as recommended in the current WHO guidelines. Katherine Halliday and colleagues present the rather disappointing impact of intermittent screening and treatment for malaria in school aged children in Kenya.

Dengue, another serious fever-inducing infection in children, is the focus of an active surveillance study by Tram Anh Wartel and colleagues of common causes of acute febrile illness in Asian children.

In an interesting twist on childhood infections, Emiel Spuesens and colleagues show that mycoplasma pneumonia may be commonly carried in the upper respiratory tracts of children making diagnosis of actual infection more difficult. And as the prevalence of infection in children generally falls world-wide, Frédéric Piel and colleagues show how sickle cell disease is emerging in the high ranks of the global burden of disease.

In encouraging news for children with autism and learning difficulties, a systematic review conducted by Brian Reichow and colleagues supports the delivery of psychosocial interventions by non-specialist providers making access to possible treatment a possibility for children world-wide.

Childhood obesity is a growing concern and in an interesting turn on the usual obesity messages, a Mendelian randomization analysis by Rebecca Richmond and colleagues suggests that increased adiposity may lead to a reduction in physical activity in children providing some evidence that a high BMI in itself, separate from external environmental influences, is a risk factor for low activity levels.

Children in armed conflict situations are a particularly vulnerable group and Mark Jordans and colleagues present encouraging case studies from five countries on an intervention that may help to improve the mental health of such children.

As shown by the breadth and scope of the Collection, PLOS is committed to increasing the high-quality, Open Access evidence base for improving child health. Furthermore, in 2014, as PLOS Medicine celebrates a decade of publishing  the PLOS Medicine editors have marked the journal’s tenth anniversary with a call for research papers on the health and wellbeing of pre-adolescent children, including 10-year-olds, from around the world.  The papers that result from this call with be added to the PLOS Pediatric Medicine Collection throughout the year.

We hope that you enjoy this Collection, which focuses on the world’s most precious resource – its children – and feel inspired to submit your pediatric research to PLOS. And if you plan to attend PAS/ASPR 14 please be sure to visit us at Booth #120.

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