In the exchange of letters to the Editor below, an important point has been made regarding reporting of patents to the Int J Obes at the time of submission of a manuscript. As Dr Zemel notes, patent applications are a matter of public record. However, in order for readers to be able easily to draw their own conclusions about potential biases, the IJO policy is for authors to declare any potential conflicts of interest, including patents, and these will be noted in a footnote to the paper. The Editor confirmed Dr Zemel's patents and patent applications and requested of him that in any future submissions to IJO, their presence be noted. Academicians are being asked by their universities to pay more attention to intellectual property, and a much higher percentage of authors will have potential conflicts of interest than in the past. All authors are encouraged to be aware of the IJO policies and to inquire at the time of submission if they have any questions about what to declare as a potential conflict of interest.