How to format your references using the Cell Reports citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Cell Reports. 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
Weiss, U. (2008). Inflammation. Nature 454, 427.
A journal article with 2 authors
Weber, W.J., and Ewing, R.C. (2000). Plutonium immobilization and radiation effects. Science 289, 2051–2052.
A journal article with 3 authors
Liu, J., Gong, P., and Zhou, X. (2014). The association between romantic relationship status and 5-HT1A gene in young adults. Sci. Rep. 4, 7049.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Senju, A., Southgate, V., White, S., and Frith, U. (2009). Mindblind eyes: an absence of spontaneous theory of mind in Asperger syndrome. Science 325, 883–885.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Zhang, P.G., and Chan, T. (2011). The Chinese Yuan (John Wiley & Sons (Asia) Pte. Ltd.).
An edited book
Singh, H. (2016). Radar Cross Section of Dipole Phased Arrays with Parallel Feed Network 1st ed. 2016. H. L. Sneha and R. M. Jha, eds. (Springer).
A chapter in an edited book
Auerbach, S.D., Yang, L., and Luscinskas, F.W. (2007). Endothelial ICAM-1 functions in adhesion and signaling during leukocyte recruitment. In Adhesion Molecules: Function and Inhibition Progress in Inflammation Research., K. Ley, ed. (Birkhäuser), pp. 99–116.

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 Cell Reports.

Blog post
Andrew, E. (2015). Holograms Heading to the International Space Station. IFLScience.


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 (2016). Hazardous Materials Rail Shipments: Emergency Responders Receive Support, but DOT Could Improve Oversight of Information Sharing (U.S. Government Printing Office).

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Kessler, C. (2013). Elements.

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
Hubbard, B., and Schmitt, E. (2017). Saudi Official Who Fell From View Is Promoted. New York Times, A6.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference 2.
This sentence cites two references 2,4.
This sentence cites four references 2,4,6,8.

About the journal

Full journal titleCell Reports
AbbreviationCell Rep.
ISSN (print)2211-1247
ScopeGeneral Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology

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