How to format your references using the Biomedical Optics Express citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Biomedical Optics Express. 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
M. Famulok, "Molecular biology. RNAs turn on in tandem," Science 306(5694), 233–234 (2004).
A journal article with 2 authors
A. W. Rutherford and A. Boussac, "Biochemistry. Water photolysis in biology," Science 303(5665), 1782–1784 (2004).
A journal article with 3 authors
A. Cohn, E. Fehr, and M. A. Maréchal, "Business culture and dishonesty in the banking industry," Nature 516(7529), 86–89 (2014).
A journal article with 4 or more authors
M. Slota, A. Keerthi, W. K. Myers, E. Tretyakov, M. Baumgarten, A. Ardavan, H. Sadeghi, C. J. Lambert, A. Narita, K. Müllen, and L. Bogani, "Magnetic edge states and coherent manipulation of graphene nanoribbons," Nature 557(7707), 691–695 (2018).

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
S. Knudsen, Guide to Analysis of DNA Microarray Data (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2005).
An edited book
D. A. Hope, ed., Contemporary Perspectives on Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Identities, Nebraska Symposium on Motivation (Springer, 2009), 54.
A chapter in an edited book
A. Sofo, N. Cicco, M. Paraggio, and A. Scopa, "Regulation of the Ascorbate–Glutathione Cycle in Plants Under Drought Stress," in Ascorbate-Glutathione Pathway and Stress Tolerance in Plants, N. A. Anjum, M.-T. Chan, and S. Umar, eds. (Springer Netherlands, 2010), pp. 137–189.

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 Biomedical Optics Express.

Blog post
E. Andrew, "World’s First Malaria Vaccine Gets Green Light,"


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, Bureau of Indian Affairs’ Progress in Providing Special Education Services to Indian Children (U.S. Government Printing Office, 1979).

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
M. Kolakoski, "The appeal to be heard and the trope of listening in classic film and African American literature," Doctoral dissertation, 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
G. Vecsey, "Echoes of Glory Fade at a Fork in the Road," New York Times (December 1, 2009).

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

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 titleBiomedical Optics Express
ISSN (online)2156-7085

Other styles