This section provides an overview of the copyright and permissions policies of the AACR journals with guidance on published article reuse by authors and others. The final typeset version of every published article is freely available to all readers 12 months after publication. Alternatively, authors may opt to publish their research as open access in an AACR "hybrid" journal (see section on Open Access for details). The AACR also assists authors in fulfilling funder Open Access mandates by depositing the accepted version of their article in a designated public repository within the required time period (see Free Access and Article Archiving).
As a not-for-profit organization incorporated in the United States, the AACR adheres to U.S. copyright law (PL 94-553), which became effective January 1, 1978. The law stipulates that copyright for works is vested in the author from the moment of creation and remains the property of the author until legally transferred. Authors who wish to publish articles and other material in AACR journals must either formally transfer copyright to AACR, or pay an Open Access fee to have their article published under a Creative Commons license. The copyright transfer form or Open Access license must be signed by all authors before AACR can proceed with publication.
After the editor has decided to provisionally accept a manuscript, dependent on any final required revisions and receipt of all necessary legal forms from the authors, all authors on the manuscript will receive an email requesting that they complete an online copyright transfer agreement or Open Access license through the SmartSubmit submission system. If an author is unable to complete the copyright transfer agreement online, the Copyright Transfer Form can be downloaded, signed, and returned via the email address or fax number noted on the form. The AACR journals will not publish a manuscript unless forms have been properly completed and returned by ALL authors.
NOTE: If using the writable PDF form linked to above, authors must either include a handwritten signature (either by signing the electronic document using a stylus or by printing and scanning a hand-signed document) or they will need to validate the document with a digital signature (an electronic signature used to authenticate the identity of the signer of a document). In conveying copyright, it is understood that the authors have not published this material elsewhere, either in whole or in part (except in abbreviated form as a preliminary communication or abstract) and that they have neither concluded previous negotiations nor initiated pending negotiations for copyright of this material.
The duly authorized agent of a commercial firm or commissioning organization must sign the AACR copyright transfer or Open Access license form if the author prepared the article as part of his or her official duties as an employee.
The U.S. government has determined that it has a nonexclusive right to publish or republish material developed from work performed by federal employees. Because the federal government does not recognize private copyright for work performed by its employees as part of their official duties, the journal will accept manuscripts from government laboratories without copyright transfer, provided that the authors abide by the same provisions required of other authors.
Authors of articles published under copyright in AACR journals have generous reuse rights of the article and its component parts as described below. Reuse by others is available upon request. Reuse of articles published under an Open Access license is governed by the terms of the specific Creative Commons license used.
Article Reuse by Authors
Authors of articles published under standard copyright in AACR journals are permitted to use their article or parts of their article in the following ways without requesting permission from the AACR. All such uses must include appropriate attribution to the original AACR publication. Authors may do the following as applicable:
- Reproduce parts of their article, including figures and tables, in books, reviews, or subsequent research articles they write;
- Use parts of their article in presentations, including figures downloaded into PowerPoint, which can be done directly from the journal's website;
- Post the accepted version of their article (after revisions resulting from peer review, but before editing and formatting) on their institutional website, if this is required by their institution. The version on the institutional repository must contain a link to the final, published version of the article on the AACR journal website so that any subsequent corrections to the published record will continue to be available to the broadest readership. The posted version may be released publicly (made open to anyone) 12 months after its publication in the journal;
- Submit a copy of the article to a doctoral candidate's university in support of a doctoral thesis or dissertation.
Article Reuse by Others
Third parties or individuals who are seeking permission to copy, reproduce, or republish content from an AACR journal and who are not the author of that content may use the Copyright Clearance Center's Rightslink® service to request permission to reuse identified content. Please see Third Party Permission and Reprints for detailed instructions on how to submit a request.