How to format your references using the Frontiers in Microbiology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Frontiers in Microbiology. 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
Lewis, R. (2007). Chemistry in context. Nature 446, 464–465.
A journal article with 2 authors
Cywes, C., and Wessels, M. R. (2001). Group A Streptococcus tissue invasion by CD44-mediated cell signalling. Nature 414, 648–652.
A journal article with 3 authors
Kaneko, Y., Nimmerjahn, F., and Ravetch, J. V. (2006). Anti-inflammatory activity of immunoglobulin G resulting from Fc sialylation. Science 313, 670–673.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Ros, A., Eichhorn, R., Regtmeier, J., Duong, T. T., Reimann, P., and Anselmetti, D. (2005). Brownian motion: absolute negative particle mobility. Nature 436, 928.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
The Family Firm Institute, Inc. (2013). Family Enterprise. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Herskovic, V., Hoppe, H. U., Jansen, M., and Ziegler, J. eds. (2012). Collaboration and Technology: 18th International Conference, CRIWG 2012 Raesfeld, Germany, September 16-19, 2012 Proceedings. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Jones, J. M., Lea-Langton, A. R., Ma, L., Pourkashanian, M., and Williams, A. (2014). “Pollutant Formation and Health Effects,” in Pollutants Generated by the Combustion of Solid Biomass Fuels SpringerBriefs in Applied Sciences and Technology., eds. A. R. Lea-Langton, L. Ma, M. Pourkashanian, and A. Williams (London: Springer), 45–61.

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 Microbiology.

Blog post
Taub, B. (2016). The Primate Brain Is Wired To Handle Any Situation Life Throws At It, Study Suggests. 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 (1968). Need To Improve System for Managing Capitalized Equipment in the Bureau of Indian Affairs. 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
Aguirre, B. L. (2010). The rise in pharmaceutical drug abuse among American adolescents.

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
Kaminer, M. (2017). Israeli Street Food in an English Kitchen. New York Times, TR11.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Lewis, 2007).
This sentence cites two references (Cywes and Wessels, 2001; Lewis, 2007).

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

  • Two authors: (Cywes and Wessels, 2001)
  • Three or more authors: (Ros et al., 2005)

About the journal

Full journal titleFrontiers in Microbiology
AbbreviationFront. Microbiol.
ISSN (online)1664-302X
Microbiology (medical)

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