How to format your references using the FEMS Microbiology Letters citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for FEMS Microbiology 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
Gammon D. Electrons in artificial atoms. Nature 2000;405:899–900.
A journal article with 2 authors
Yang Z-F, Zhou J-H. Can we identify source lithology of basalt? Sci Rep 2013;3:1856.
A journal article with 3 authors
Gadsby DC, Vergani P, Csanády L. The ABC protein turned chloride channel whose failure causes cystic fibrosis. Nature 2006;440:477–83.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Hattendorf DA, Andreeva A, Gangar A et al. Structure of the yeast polarity protein Sro7 reveals a SNARE regulatory mechanism. Nature 2007;446:567–71.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Wright D. Using Commercial Contracts. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, 2016.
An edited book
Barton LL, Mandl M, Loy A eds. Geomicrobiology: Molecular and Environmental Perspective. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands, 2010.
A chapter in an edited book
Cogburn J. Moore’s Paradox as an Argument Against Anti-realism. In: Rahman S, Primiero G, Marion M (eds.). The Realism-Antirealism Debate in the Age of Alternative Logics. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands, 2012, 69–84.

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 FEMS Microbiology Letters.

Blog post
Hale T. Scientists Find Fish Not Seen Since The 1870s. There’s Something Rather Strange About It. 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. Army Budget: Potential Reductions to Budget Requests for Selected ADP Systems. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1988.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Chin S-H. A performer’s guide to Howard Hanson’s “Four Poems (Poèmes érotiques)”, Opus 9. 2009.

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
Hollander S. Offended Fan Wants Ashe Statue Moved. New York Times. September 2, 2000:D6.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by name and year in parentheses:

This sentence cites one reference (Gammon 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Gammon 2000; Yang and Zhou 2013).

Here are examples of in-text citations with multiple authors:

  • Two authors: (Yang and Zhou 2013)
  • Three authors: (Gadsby, Vergani and Csanády 2006)
  • 4 or more authors: (Hattendorf et al. 2007)

About the journal

Full journal titleFEMS Microbiology Letters
AbbreviationFEMS Microbiol. Lett.
ISSN (print)0378-1097
ISSN (online)1574-6968
Molecular Biology

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