PLOS Biology is a peer-reviewed scientific journal covering all aspects of Biology. Publication began on October 13, 2003. It was the first journal of the Public Library of Science. PLOS Biology is an Open access journal published under the Creative Commons Attribution license. To fund the journal, the publication's business model requires that, in most cases, authors will pay publication costs.
"The founders of PLoS Biology have set their sights high in terms of the quality of the research they intend to publish. Their goal is to publish high-profile original research of great significance in all fields of Biology and in crossover areas with other disciplines."— Todd Eckdahl, Cell Biology Education
In addition to research articles, PLOS Biology publishes magazine content via a selection of named article types. These include Essays, Unsolved Mysteries, Editorials and Synopses. The magazine section of PLOS Biology aims to make science accessible to a broad audience. These articles are directed at a readership that extends beyond the traditional research community and that includes scientific educators, students and the interested public.
PLOS Biology is indexed in PubMed, MEDLINE, PubMed Central, Scopus, Google Scholar, the Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS), RefAware, EMBASE, PsychInfo and Web of Science. PLOS Biology is formally archived via PubMed Central.
Using CC-BY, PLOS authors retain ownership of the copyright for their article, but anyone can download, reuse, reprint, modify and/or distribute articles, as long as the original authors and source are cited. No permission is required from the authors or the publishers.
Mike Taylor of Discover Magazine said in 2012 that while PLOS Biology has a high impact factor, "PLoS has de-emphasized this traditional, problematic measure, so you won’t find this fact blazoned across their website."
PLOS Biology uses "Article Level Metrics" (a suite of altmetrics) to provide a measure of the impact of their published articles. PLOS Biology articles display numbers of page views, downloads, citations, social bookmarking and dissemination activity, media and blog coverage.
Due to their CC-BY licensing, files from PLOS Biology can be reused in places other than the original article, e.g. to illustrate Wikipedia articles.