The Public Library of Science (PLOS) was founded in 2000 by biomedical scientists Harold E. Varmus, Patrick O. Brown and Michael Eisen for the purpose of granting open access to the public about scientific research papers. An open letter was sent to scientific publishers encouraging them to all distribution of their research literature through an on-line publication like the National Library of Medicine's PubMed Central. In response to a less than receptive response, PLOS launched a nonprofit scientific and medical publishing venture in 2003. PLOS articles are available free on-line and appear immediately on the web site for no charge. PLOS received start-up funds from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundations and has received various other foundation endowments for their not for profit enterprise.
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