Memorias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz was officially created in 1907, by the federal decree 1.802, December 12, 1907 (for Portuguese version of this decree - http://www2.camara.leg.br/legin/fed/decret/1900-1909/decreto-1802-12-dezembro-1907-582504-publicacaooriginal-105302-pl.html). Memorias effectively started its life as scientific publishing journal only two years later. This start could not be better: in the second issue of the journal (August 1909), Dr. Carlos Chagas reported the discovery of a new human trypanosomiasis including both its infectious agent - the protozoan Trypanosoma cruzi, and the vector - the triatomine bugs) (http://memorias-old.ioc.fiocruz.br/pdf/Tomo01/tomo01(f2)_159-218.pdf). This trypanosomiasis is currently known as Chagas Disease. Because of the breath and impact of this discovery to the tropical Medicine in the XX century, he should have been recognized by a Nobel Prize in Medicine or Physiology. For reasons we will probably never know, the prize was not awarded to Dr. Carlos Chagas.
The journal has experienced many changes since the first issue in April 1909. From a typical institutional journal, e. g, dedicated to publishing exclusively the scientific work from the Oswaldo Cruz institute researchers, Memorias went on to become one of the most prestigious journals in the fields of tropical medicine and parasitology in the XXI century.
Our journal has been able to survive all transformations of the scientific publishing landscape in last century. The challenge now is no less daunting. It is the core mission of this journal to keep serving the human infectious disease research community in an environment of overwhelming dissemination of information. In the meantime several questions pop up in our dashboard: what role should be assigned to editors? Do we need them? All the information should go immediately open? Peer-review should be performed by a few individual researchers, massive decentralized reviewers or reviewing committees? What about the costs of these initiatives? In a world of open and immediate publishing repositories, do we really need journals under the current format?
For sure, the Memorias editors do not have conclusive answers for these questions, but at least a history of 110 years of science publishing may help us to navigate through this environment of uncertainty and many potential innovations. New terms are around here, e. g., preprints, collaborative peer review, living article, to cite the most relevant ones. They point out a new world where authors recuperate the full control on how to publish, what publish, and even which editing will be needed. Memorias, like most current journals, is under pressure to respond to these challenges. If journals wish to remain relevant for science dissemination in the near future, they must properly address these questions. We do, and hope our authors think so.
Happy 110 years Memorias do IOC!