How to format your references using the Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Frontiers in Cell and Developmental 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.
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
Livingston, J. D. (2000). An electromagnetic personality. Nature 407, 453.
A journal article with 2 authors
Peppe, D. J., and Royer, D. L. (2015). ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE. Can climate feel the pressure? Science 348, 1210–1211.
A journal article with 3 authors
Saá, P., Castilla, J., and Soto, C. (2006). Presymptomatic detection of prions in blood. Science 313, 92–94.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
König, R., Stertz, S., Zhou, Y., Inoue, A., Hoffmann, H.-H., Bhattacharyya, S., et al. (2010). Human host factors required for influenza virus replication. Nature 463, 813–817.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Geren, R. L. (2016). Applying the Building Code. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Du, D.-Z., Hu, X., and Pardalos, P. M. eds. (2009). Combinatorial Optimization and Applications: Third International Conference, COCOA 2009, Huangshan, China, June 10-12, 2009. Proceedings. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Thielen, C., and Krumke, S. O. (2009). “Truthful Mechanisms for Selfish Routing and Two-Parameter Agents,” in Algorithmic Game Theory: Second International Symposium, SAGT 2009, Paphos, Cyprus, October 18-20, 2009. Proceedings Lecture Notes in Computer Science., eds. M. Mavronicolas and V. G. Papadopoulou (Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer), 36–47.

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 Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology.

Blog post
Luntz, S. (2017). Young Stars In Old Clusters Challenge One Of Astronomy’s Certainties. IFLScience. Available at: [Accessed October 30, 2018].


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 (1995). Charter Schools: New Model for Public Schools Provides Opportunities and Challenges. Washington, DC: 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
Nguyen, H. M. (2009). Valuation effects and external adjustment.

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
Shear, M. D., and Goodnough, A. (2017). President Is Preparing to Declare a National Emergency Over the Opioid Epidemic. New York Times, A13.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Livingston, 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Livingston, 2000; Peppe and Royer, 2015).

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

  • Two authors: (Peppe and Royer, 2015)
  • Three or more authors: (König et al., 2010)

About the journal

Full journal titleFrontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology
AbbreviationFront. Cell Dev. Biol.
ISSN (online)2296-634X

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