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

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Current Opinion in Cell Biology. 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
Shalaev VM: Physics. Transforming light. Science 2008, 322:384–386.
A journal article with 2 authors
Kurzban R, Barrett HC: Behavior. Origins of cumulative culture. Science 2012, 335:1056–1057.
A journal article with 3 authors
Binshtok AM, Bean BP, Woolf CJ: Inhibition of nociceptors by TRPV1-mediated entry of impermeant sodium channel blockers. Nature 2007, 449:607–610.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Klein DR, MacNeill D, Lado JL, Soriano D, Navarro-Moratalla E, Watanabe K, Taniguchi T, Manni S, Canfield P, Fernández-Rossier J, et al.: Probing magnetism in 2D van der Waals crystalline insulators via electron tunneling. Science 2018, 360:1218–1222.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Coombs WT, Holladay SJ: Managing Corporate Social Responsibility. Wiley-Blackwell; 2011.
An edited book
Dumont HJ (Ed): The Nile: Origin, Environments, Limnology and Human Use. Springer Netherlands; 2009.
A chapter in an edited book
Glynn PW, Manzello DP: Bioerosion and Coral Reef Growth: A Dynamic Balance. In Coral Reefs in the Anthropocene. Edited by Birkeland C. Springer Netherlands; 2015:67–97.

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 Cell Biology.

Blog post
Luntz S: Why It Is Not So Good To Be A Lone Wolf. 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: Intellectual Property: Federal Agency Efforts in Transferring and Reporting New Technology. U.S. Government Printing Office; 2002.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Kane BH: A Qualitative Exploratory Inquiry of Communicating in a Multigenerational Traditional-Rational Organization. 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
Leland J: Mystery Ends: Date and Venue Are Set for Chess Event. New York Times 2016,

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 Cell Biology
AbbreviationCurr. Opin. Cell Biol.
ISSN (print)0955-0674
ISSN (online)1879-0410
ScopeCell Biology

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