The lack of reproducibility in many areas of experimental science has a number of causes, including a lack of transparency and precision in the description of experimental approaches. This has far-reaching consequences, including wasted resources and slowing of progress. Additionally, the large number of laboratories around the world publishing articles on a given topic make it difficult, if not impossible, for individual researchers to read all of the relevant literature. Consequently, centralized databases are needed to facilitate the generation of new hypotheses for testing. One strategy to improve transparency in experimental description, and to allow the development of frameworks for computer-readable knowledge repositories, is the adoption of uniform reporting standards, such as common data elements (data elements used in multiple clinical studies) and minimum information standards. This article describes a minimum information standard for spinal cord injury (SCI) experiments, its major elements, and the approaches used to develop it. Transparent reporting standards for experiments using animal models of human SCI aim to reduce inherent bias and increase experimental value.
Keywords: MIASCI; axonal injury; axonal regeneration; spinal cord injury.