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
Davies, K. G. (2000). Creative tension. Nature 407, 135.
A journal article with 2 authors
Shin, D. S., and Tainer, J. A. (2015). Molecular biology: DNA repair without flipping out. Nature 527, 168–169.
A journal article with 3 authors
Fasel, R., Parschau, M., and Ernst, K.-H. (2006). Amplification of chirality in two-dimensional enantiomorphous lattices. Nature 439, 449–452.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Fomin, Y. D., Ryzhov, V. N., Tsiok, E. N., Brazhkin, V. V., and Trachenko, K. (2014). Dynamic transition in supercritical iron. Sci. Rep. 4, 7194.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Szczecinski, L., and Alvarado, A. (2014). Bit-Interleaved Coded Modulation. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Reigosa, M. J., Pedrol, N., and González, L. eds. (2006). Allelopathy: A Physiological Process with Ecological Implications. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.
A chapter in an edited book
Vu, T. T., Tran, G. B., and Pham, S. B. (2014). “Learning to Simplify Children Stories with Limited Data,” in Intelligent Information and Database Systems: 6th Asian Conference, ACIIDS 2014, Bangkok, Thailand, April 7-9, 2014, Proceedings, Part I Lecture Notes in Computer Science., eds. N. T. Nguyen, B. Attachoo, B. Trawiński, and K. Somboonviwat (Cham: Springer International Publishing), 31–41.

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
Andrew, E. (2014). Two-Headed Salamander Born In Israel. 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 (2004). Highlights of a GAO Forum: The Federal Government’s Role in Improving Financial Literacy. 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
Peterson, D. G. (2012). An application of geotechnical techniques to quantitative regional slope stability analysis San Clemente, California.

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
Branch, J. (2016). A Gladiator’s Guidance. New York Times, D1.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Davies, 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Davies, 2000; Shin and Tainer, 2015).

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

  • Two authors: (Shin and Tainer, 2015)
  • Three or more authors: (Fomin et al., 2014)

About the journal

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

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