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

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Frontiers in Plant Cell 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
Guo, X. (2009). Comment on “Colossal ionic conductivity at interfaces of epitaxial ZrO2:Y2O3/SrTiO3 heterostructures.” Science 324, 465; author reply 465.
A journal article with 2 authors
Blander, J. M., and Amsen, D. (2009). Immunology. Amino acid addiction. Science 324, 1282–1283.
A journal article with 3 authors
Cziczo, D. J., Thomson, D. S., and Murphy, D. M. (2001). Ablation, flux, and atmospheric implications of meteors inferred from stratospheric aerosol. Science 291, 1772–1775.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Boyer, V., Marino, A. M., Pooser, R. C., and Lett, P. D. (2008). Entangled images from four-wave mixing. Science 321, 544–547.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Chin, W. (2016). Reservoir Engineering in Modern Oilfields. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Kaminsky, W. ed. (2013). Polyolefins: 50 years after Ziegler and Natta II: Polyolefins by Metallocenes and Other Single-Site Catalysts. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Sharma, V. K., He, C., Doong, R.-A., and Dionysiou, D. D. (2013). “Water Depollution Using Ferrites Photocatalysts,” in Green Materials for Energy, Products and Depollution Environmental Chemistry for a Sustainable World., eds. E. Lichtfouse, J. Schwarzbauer, and D. Robert (Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands), 135–150.

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 Plant Cell Biology.

Blog post
Luntz, S. (2015). Black Supermoon Will Be Visible Wednesday Night. 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 (2011). VA Education Benefits: Actions Taken, but Outreach and Oversight Could Be Improved. 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
Ellerbrock, G. (2017). Intergenerational Ontology & Leadership: Uniting the Multigenerational Workforce.

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
Brantley, B. (2017). A Drink, and a Dissenting Opinion. New York Times, C1.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Guo, 2009).
This sentence cites two references (Blander and Amsen, 2009; Guo, 2009).

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

  • Two authors: (Blander and Amsen, 2009)
  • Three or more authors: (Boyer et al., 2008)

About the journal

Full journal titleFrontiers in Plant Cell Biology
AbbreviationFront. Plant Sci.
ISSN (online)1664-462X
ScopePlant Science

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