How to format your references using the Cancer Letters citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Cancer 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.
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
L.K. Sydnes, Policy: Update the Chemical Weapons Convention, Nature. 496 (2013) 25–26.
A journal article with 2 authors
M.M. Wheeler, G.E. Robinson, Diet-dependent gene expression in honey bees: honey vs. sucrose or high fructose corn syrup, Sci. Rep. 4 (2014) 5726.
A journal article with 3 authors
A. Sakuda, A. Hayashi, M. Tatsumisago, Sulfide solid electrolyte with favorable mechanical property for all-solid-state lithium battery, Sci. Rep. 3 (2013) 2261.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
L. Becks, F.M. Hilker, H. Malchow, K. Jürgens, H. Arndt, Experimental demonstration of chaos in a microbial food web, Nature. 435 (2005) 1226–1229.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
P.M. Griffin, H.B. Nembhard, C.J. DeFlitch, N.D. Bastian, H. Kang, D.A. Muñoz, Healthcare Systems Engineering, John Wiley & Sons, Inc, Hoboken, NJ, 2015.
An edited book
L.G. Feld, F.J. Kaskel, eds., Fluid and Electrolytes in Pediatrics: A Comprehensive Handbook, Humana Press, Totowa, NJ, 2010.
A chapter in an edited book
S.M. Müller, E.-E. Steen, A. Hein, Inferring Multi-person Presence in Home Sensor Networks, in: R. Wichert, H. Klausing (Eds.), Ambient Assisted Living: 8. AAL-Kongress 2015,Frankfurt/M, April 29-30. April, 2015, Springer International Publishing, Cham, 2016: pp. 47–56.

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 Cancer Letters.

Blog post
T. Hale, Antarctic’s Gigantic Ice Crack Is Fast Approaching Crunch Time, IFLScience. (2017).


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, Surface Transportation: Competitive Grant Programs Could Benefit from Increased Performance Focus and Better Documentation of Key Decisions, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 2011.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
D.J. LaVertu, An Exploratory Approach to In-Trinity® for Fall Prevention, Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach, 2017.

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, Back to Brooklyn for a U.S. Eagle, New York Times. (2011) SP10.

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 titleCancer Letters
AbbreviationCancer Lett.
ISSN (print)0304-3835
ScopeCancer Research

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