How to format your references using the Current Opinion in Biotechnology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Current Opinion in Biotechnology. 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
Gingerich O: Brian Marsden (1937-2010). Nature 2010, 468:1042.
A journal article with 2 authors
Sheffield MEJ, Dombeck DA: Calcium transient prevalence across the dendritic arbour predicts place field properties. Nature 2015, 517:200–204.
A journal article with 3 authors
Okabe Y, Sano T, Nagata S: Regulation of the innate immune response by threonine-phosphatase of Eyes absent. Nature 2009, 460:520–524.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Johansson LI, Armiento R, Avila J, Xia C, Lorcy S, Abrikosov IA, Asensio MC, Virojanadara C: Multiple π-bands and Bernal stacking of multilayer graphene on C-face SiC, revealed by nano-Angle Resolved Photoemission. Sci Rep 2014, 4:4157.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Matthews GG: Cellular Physiology of Nerve and Muscle. Blackwell Publishing Ltd.; 2002.
An edited book
Hinze M: Optimization with PDE Constraints. Springer Netherlands; 2009.
A chapter in an edited book
Krieger MP: On the Incompressibility of Monotone DNFs. In Fundamentals of Computation Theory: 15th International Symposium, FCT 2005, Lübeck, Germany, August 17-20, 2005. Proceedings. Edited by Liśkiewicz M, Reischuk R. Springer; 2005:32–43.

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 Current Opinion in Biotechnology.

Blog post
Carpineti C: This Parasite Infested Snail Looks Like Something From A Horror Movie. 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: Exiting Program Improvement. U.S. Government Printing Office; 1993.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Wolodkowicz R: Leadership qualities and employee-student future intentions. 2008,

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
Seligman MEP, Tierney J: We Aren’t Built to Live in the Moment. New York Times 2017,

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 titleCurrent Opinion in Biotechnology
AbbreviationCurr. Opin. Biotechnol.
ISSN (print)0958-1669
ISSN (online)1879-0429
Biomedical Engineering

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