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

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Frontiers in Pharmacology. 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
Dobson, A. (2003). Ecology. Metalife! Science 301, 1488–1490.
A journal article with 2 authors
Lukas, D., and Huchard, E. (2014). Sexual conflict. The evolution of infanticide by males in mammalian societies. Science 346, 841–844.
A journal article with 3 authors
Kiss, I. Z., Zhai, Y., and Hudson, J. L. (2002). Emerging coherence in a population of chemical oscillators. Science 296, 1676–1678.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
del Rio, A., Perez-Jimenez, R., Liu, R., Roca-Cusachs, P., Fernandez, J. M., and Sheetz, M. P. (2009). Stretching single talin rod molecules activates vinculin binding. Science 323, 638–641.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Feldmann, D. (2015). Social Movements For Good. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Fang, Z., Smith, R. L., Jr., and Qi, X. eds. (2015). Production of Biofuels and Chemicals with Ultrasound. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.
A chapter in an edited book
Lakshminarayan, C. K. (2013). “High Dimensional Big Data and Pattern Analysis: A Tutorial,” in Big Data Analytics: Second International Conference, BDA 2013, Mysore, India, December 16-18, 2013, Proceedings Lecture Notes in Computer Science., eds. V. Bhatnagar and S. Srinivasa (Cham: Springer International Publishing), 68–85.

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 Pharmacology.

Blog post
Andrews, R. (2016). Chimpanzees And Bonobos Had Two Major Flings In The Ancient Past. 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 (2015). Intelligent Transportation Systems: Vehicle-to-Infrastructure Technologies Expected to Offer Benefits, but Deployment Challenges Exist. 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
Lovejoy, L. P. (2010). On the control of selective attention in the primate superior colliculus.

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
Gordon, M. R. (2017). Defense Secretary Says He Didn’t Contradict President. New York Times, A8.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Dobson, 2003).
This sentence cites two references (Dobson, 2003; Lukas and Huchard, 2014).

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

  • Two authors: (Lukas and Huchard, 2014)
  • Three or more authors: (del Rio et al., 2009)

About the journal

Full journal titleFrontiers in Pharmacology
AbbreviationFront. Pharmacol.
ISSN (online)1663-9812
ScopePharmacology (medical)

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