Radiology research funding has increased—still no association with citation rate

Radiology research funding has increased -- still no association with citation rate
a. Significance lost after adjustment for multiple testing using false-positive rate control. b. Statistically significant.cApplies to Radiology and European Radiology articles only. Credit: American Roentgen Ray Society (ARRS), American Journal of Roentgenology (AJR)

According to ARRS' American Journal of Roentgenology (AJR), nearly half (47.7%) of the research articles published in major radiology journals declared funding—a proportion that has increased from 17% of articles in 1994 and 26.9% published between 2001 and 2010.

"Most funded articles received support from federal sponsors or nonprofit foundations, whereas only a minority of funded articles were supported by ," explained first author Rayan H.M. Alkhawtani from the department of radiology, , and molecular imaging at University Medical Center Groningen in The Netherlands.

And as Alkhawtani et al. concluded, "funding was not associated with a higher citation rate."

The Dutch team included a total of 600 consecutive original published between January and October 2016 in three large journals: AJR, Radiology, and European Radiology. Using linear regression analysis to ascertain the association between research funding and citation rate, adjustments were made for the following seven factors:

  • journal,
  • continent of origin of first author,
  • subspecialty,
  • study findings included in title,
  • number of authors,
  • immediate open access publication,
  • time since publication online.

Finding that funding was declared in 286 of 600 (47.7%) included articles, the authors of this AJR "Original Research" article identified the six most significant funding sources:

  • federal sponsorship (29.4%),
  • nonprofit foundation (16.4%),
  • both federal sponsorship and nonprofit foundation (16.1%),
  • private industry (10.1%),
  • intramural institutional (9.8%),
  • other combinations of funding sources (18.2%).

"Articles with first authors whose continent of origin was Europe (p < 0.001), vascular and interventional radiology articles (p < 0.001), and articles published in AJR (p < 0.001) were significantly more frequently unfunded than funded," Alkhawtani and colleagues noted.

Meanwhile, the team noted that articles published in Radiology were significantly more frequently funded (p < 0.001).

Ultimately, citation rate was not significantly different between funded and unfunded articles (p = 0.166), and in the adjusted linear regression analysis, was not significantly associated with citation rate (β coefficient, -0.31; 95% CI, -3.27 to 2.66; p = 0.838).

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More information: Rayan H. M. Alkhawtani et al, Funding of Radiology Research: Frequency and Association With Citation Rate, American Journal of Roentgenology (2020). DOI: 10.2214/AJR.20.22786
Citation: Radiology research funding has increased—still no association with citation rate (2020, September 3) retrieved 18 September 2020 from
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