Jack Kessler Named Editor of Open-Access Journal

The American Neurological Association has named John "Jack" Kessler, MD, as the first Editor of the organization's new open-access journal, Annals Clinical Translational Neurology. Dr. Kessler is the Ken and Ruth Davee Professor of Stem Cell Biology at Northwestern University.  


Annals Clinical Translational Neurology is an online-only, open-access journal designed to support the ANA's mission by expanding access to rigorously reviewed translational research and clinical investigation. It is planned to launch in October 2013.


"I am honored and excited to have been chosen to be the editor of this new journal," Kessler said. "Open access publication of clinical and scientific advances is rapidly becoming the norm for biomedical research. The creation of Annals Clinical Translational Neurology as a partner for the Annals of Neurology is a timely and exciting new venture that should greatly enhance the rapid dissemination of high quality research."


Dr. Kessler was selected by a review committee chaired by Robert Macdonald, MD, PhD, Vanderbilt University.


"I am absolutely delighted that Jack Kessler has been selected as the first Editor of Annals Clinical Translational Neurology," said ANA President Eva Feldman. "Jack's leadership, his visionary science, and his extensive publishing record will all serve the mission of translational science that ACTN seeks to advance."


Dr. Kessler served as Chair at Northwestern from 2000 to 2012. A pre-eminent name in stem cell biology for more than a quarter-century, he has co-authored more than 200 published articles and served on numerous scientific advisory panels. He also helped establish the Human Embryonic and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Facility and served as director of the Northwestern University Stem Cell Institute and the Feinberg Clinical Neuroscience Institute.


A pioneer in the field of regenerative neurology, early work in Dr. Kessler's 35-year career focused on the basic biology of neural growth factors, where he made fundamental contributions to the understanding of how they regulate the development of the nervous system. An expert in spinal cord regeneration, Kessler has also collaborated with Northwestern's Institute for BioNanoTechnology in Medicine to combine nanotechnology with stem cell biology.


After completing his undergraduate studies at Princeton University, Dr. Kessler earned his medical degree at Cornell University Medical College in 1971. Before joining Northwestern as the neurology chair in 2000, Kessler served on the faculty of Cornell and Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.


The ANA owns Annals of Neurology, which is co-sponsored by the Child Neurology Society and is published under contract to Wiley-Blackwell. Annals' 2012 Impact Factor is 11.089, ranking it second in the Clinical Neurology category. An extraordinarily selective review process, which contributes to Annals' Impact Factor, means that many sound, publishable papers are rejected and subsequently submitted elsewhere. By launching a second journal, ANA plans to provide authors with a new vehicle for submission, as well as with the opportunity of publishing under the Open Access paradigm.    


The ACTN model permits immediate worldwide accessibility at no cost to the end-user or library. With an emphasis on education, the new journal will serve as a forum for young people. The open-access journal will permit authors to retain copyright in their articles, using the Creative Commons license. The journal will be funded by Article Publication Fees, typically paid by research funding agencies and institutions. It will be published online only and published articles will be immediately and universally free.