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

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Frontiers in Physiology. 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
Becker, B. J. (2003). Perceptions of science. Celestial spectroscopy: making reality fit the myth. Science 301, 1332–1333.
A journal article with 2 authors
Modlin, R. L., and Bloom, B. R. (2001). Immunology. Chip shots--will functional genomics get functional? Science 294, 799–801.
A journal article with 3 authors
Karnath, H.-O., Borchers, S., and Himmelbach, M. (2010). Comment on “Movement intention after parietal cortex stimulation in humans.” Science 327, 1200; author reply 1200.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Nakano, T., Chin, C., Myint, D. M. A., Tan, E. W., Hale, P. J., Krishna M, B. M., et al. (2014). Mimicking subsecond neurotransmitter dynamics with femtosecond laser stimulated nanosystems. Sci. Rep. 4, 5398.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Butler, K. C. (2016). Multinational Finance. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Yazici, H., Yazici, Y., and Lesaffre, E. eds. (2014). Understanding Evidence-Based Rheumatology: A Guide to Interpreting Criteria, Drugs, Trials, Registries, and Ethics. Cham: Springer International Publishing.
A chapter in an edited book
Reitz-Krueger, C. L., Nagel, A. G., Guarnera, L. A., and Reppucci, N. D. (2015). “Community Influence on Adolescent Development,” in Handbook of Adolescent Behavioral Problems: Evidence-Based Approaches to Prevention and Treatment, eds. T. P. Gullotta, R. W. Plant, and M. A. Evans (Boston, MA: Springer US), 71–84.

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 Frontiers in Physiology.

Blog post
O`Callaghan, J. (2017). SpaceX Is Trying To Find The Perfect Landing Site For Its Upcoming Mars Mission. 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 (2012). Commuter Rail: Potential Impacts and Cost Estimates for the Cancelled Hudson River Tunnel Project. 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
Asare, K. B. (2016). Understanding the Transformational Leadership Practices of Colleges of Education Principals.

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
Kelly, K. (2002). Where Mu sic: Will Be Coming From. New York Times, 629.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Becker, 2003).
This sentence cites two references (Modlin and Bloom, 2001; Becker, 2003).

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

  • Two authors: (Modlin and Bloom, 2001)
  • Three or more authors: (Nakano et al., 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titleFrontiers in Physiology
AbbreviationFront. Physiol.
ISSN (online)1664-042X
Physiology (medical)

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