Top 10 Virology Journals of 2021

Whether you are trying to identify the ideal journal for your research, exploring articles relevant to your PhD thesis, or looking for literature to discuss at an upcoming journal club, you are likely to find these journals helpful for your pursuits. This article outlines the top ten scientific journals in the field of virology ranked according to Google’s h-5 index and the ranking system of the Spanish research group SCImago.

The journals addressed in this article are, for the most part, “general” virology journals and not dedicated to a particular sub-topic within the field. If you are interested in learning the rankings of journals specifically focused on literature related to antiviral drug development, HIV, oncolytic viruses, or another sub-topic, then you may not find this article helpful.

We encourage you to explore the website associated with each journal, where you can learn more about its mission, publication policies, and infrastructure. Many also feature detailed metrics including impact factor, whether or not the journal is open access, and other information that may support your search.

Google ranks scientific journals according to the h5-index, an index that considers publications in the journal over the past 5 years and that is intended to take into account both the number and quality of publications.

Google’s h5-index value is calculated to maximize both the number of published papers and the number of citations. According to wikipedia, the “h-index is defined as the maximum value of h such that the given author/journal has published h papers that have each been cited at least h times.”

The Spanish research group SCImago has also ranked the top journals in the fields of Radiology, Nuclear Medicine, and Imaging. Their most recent release is for the year 2019.

Google Rankings (2020):

  1. PLOS Pathogens – h5-index: 89
  2. Vaccine – h5-index: 76
  3. Journal of Virology – h5-index: 76
  4. Viruses – h5-index: 65
  5. Antiviral Research – h5-index: 57
  6. Virology – h5-index: 55
  7. Current Opinion in Virology – h5-index: 51
  8. Journal of General Virology – h5-index: 50
  9. Transboundary and Emerging Diseases – h5-index: 48
  10. Virus Research – h5-index: 45

SCImago Rankings (2019):

  1. Cell Host and Microbe – Journal Ranking: 7.168
  2. The Lancet HIV – Journal Ranking: 6.395
  3. Trends in Microbiology – Journal Ranking: 4.288
  4. Annual Review of Virology – Journal Ranking: 3.977
  5. mBio – Journal Ranking: 3.876
  6. PLoS Pathogens – Journal Ranking: 3.640
  7. Eurosurveillance – Journal Ranking: 3.014
  8. Current Opinion in Virology – Journal Ranking: 2.455
  9. Journal of Virology – Journal Ranking: 2.406
  10. Emerging Microbes and Infections – Journal Ranking: 2.212

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