How to format your references using the Acta Pharmacologica Sinica citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Acta Pharmacologica Sinica. 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.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
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
Kuhn, N. J. Learn lateral thinking first and specialize later. Nature 404, 542 (2000).
A journal article with 2 authors
Dörr, K. & Herklotz, A. Materials science: Two steps for a magnetoelectric switch. Nature 516, 337–338 (2014).
A journal article with 3 authors
Frederickson, M. E., Greene, M. J. & Gordon, D. M. Ecology: ‘Devil’s gardens’ bedevilled by ants. Nature 437, 495–496 (2005).
A journal article with 6 or more authors
Smith, J. T. et al. Chernobyl’s legacy in food and water. Nature 405, 141 (2000).

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Wagner-Martin, L. A History of American Literature. (Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 2012).
An edited book
Metaheuristics in the Service Industry. vol. 624 (Springer, 2009).
A chapter in an edited book
Hennigs, N., Karampournioti, E. & Wiedmann, K.-P. Do as You Would Be Done by: The Importance of Animal Welfare in the Global Beauty Care Industry. in Green Fashion: Volume 1 (eds. Muthu, S. S. & Gardetti, M. A.) 109–125 (Springer, 2016).

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 Acta Pharmacologica Sinica.

Blog post
Andrew, E. How Life on Earth Recovers After A Devastating Mass Extinction. IFLScience (2015).


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. Airspace System: Emerging Technologies May Offer Alternatives to the Instrument Landing System. (1992).

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Schluter, K. T. Hearing words without structure: Subliminal speech priming and the organization of the Moroccan Arabic lexicon. (University of Arizona, 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
Sophia Kishkovsky; Compiled by. Arts, Briefly; A New Festival in Moscow. New York Times B8 (2006).

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 titleActa Pharmacologica Sinica
AbbreviationActa Pharmacol. Sin.
ISSN (print)1671-4083
ISSN (online)1745-7254
ScopeGeneral Medicine
Pharmacology (medical)

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