How to format your references using the ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Cardinale, B. J. Biodiversity Improves Water Quality through Niche Partitioning. Nature 2011, 472 (7341), 86–89.
A journal article with 2 authors
Katzenellenbogen, B. S.; Katzenellenbogen, J. A. Biomedicine. Defining the “S” in SERMs. Science 2002, 295 (5564), 2380–2381.
A journal article with 3 authors
Westfall, P. J.; Ballon, D. R.; Thorner, J. When the Stress of Your Environment Makes You Go HOG Wild. Science 2004, 306 (5701), 1511–1512.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Qi, W.; Bi, J.; Zhang, X.; Wang, J.; Wang, J.; Liu, P.; Li, Z.; Wu, W. Damaging Effects of Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotubes on Pregnant Mice with Different Pregnancy Times. Sci. Rep. 2014, 4, 4352.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Bard, J.; Kovarik, V. J., Jr. Software Defined Radio; John Wiley & Sons, Ltd: Chichester, UK, 2007.
An edited book
Reviews of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology Volume 210; Whitacre, D. M., Ed.; Reviews of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology, Continuation of Residue Reviews; Springer: New York, NY, 2011; Vol. 210.
A chapter in an edited book
Bouhafs, F.; Mackay, M.; Merabti, M. Home Energy Management Systems. In Communication Challenges and Solutions in the Smart Grid; Mackay, M., Merabti, M., Eds.; SpringerBriefs in Computer Science; Springer: New York, NY, 2014; pp 53–67.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters.

Blog post
Andrew, D. GMOs Lead The Fight Against Zika, Ebola And The Next Unknown Pandemic. IFLScience. (accessed 2018-10-30).


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office. Medicare: New Claims Processing System Benefits and Acquisition Risks; HEHS/AIMD-94-79; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 1994.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Deutsch, D. Increased Mental Health Services for the Homeless. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, CA, 2010.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Pilon, M. Chronicling The Business Of the Games. New York Times. August 12, 2012, p SP3.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in superscript:

This sentence cites one reference 1.
This sentence cites two references 1,2.
This sentence cites four references 1–4.

About the journal

Full journal titleACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters
AbbreviationACS Med. Chem. Lett.
ISSN (online)1948-5875

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