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
Struhl, K. Gene Regulation. A Paradigm for Precision. Science 2001, 293 (5532), 1054–1055.
A journal article with 2 authors
Krishnan, V.; Nestler, E. J. The Molecular Neurobiology of Depression. Nature 2008, 455 (7215), 894–902.
A journal article with 3 authors
Ghuman, A. S.; van den Honert, R. N.; Martin, A. Interregional Neural Synchrony Has Similar Dynamics during Spontaneous and Stimulus-Driven States. Sci. Rep. 2013, 3, 1481.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Dunne, L.; Eales, S.; Ivison, R.; Morgan, H.; Edmunds, M. Type II Supernovae as a Significant Source of Interstellar Dust. Nature 2003, 424 (6946), 285–287.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Moskowitz, H. R.; Muñoz, A. M.; Gacula, M. C., Jr. Viewpoints and Controversies in Sensory Science and Consumer Product Testing; Food & Nutrition Press, Inc.: Trumbull, Connecticut, USA, 2008.
An edited book
Immunology of Aging; Massoud, A., Rezaei, N., Eds.; Springer: Berlin, Heidelberg, 2014.
A chapter in an edited book
Barbosa, V. H. Nonscarring Alopecias. In Skin of Color: A Practical Guide to Dermatologic Diagnosis and Treatment; Alexis, A. F., Barbosa, V. H., Eds.; Springer: New York, NY, 2013; pp 91–104.

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, E. Milky Way’s Black Hole Is Unusually “Chatty” (accessed Oct 30, 2018).


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. Designing Evaluations: A Workbook; 129366; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 1986.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Baxter, V. P. Communitarian Leadership Practice Acquisition in Educational Leadership Preparation. Doctoral dissertation, George Washington University, Washington, DC, 2013.

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
Vecsey, G. As Colts Rested, Jets Awoke. New York Times. January 23, 2010, p D1.

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

Other styles