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

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Frontiers in Plant 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
Hyun, I. (2014). Policy: Regulate embryos made for research. Nature 509, 27–28.
A journal article with 2 authors
Nicholson, D. W., and Thornberry, N. A. (2003). Apoptosis. Life and death decisions. Science 299, 214–215.
A journal article with 3 authors
Matsumoto, K., Suzuki, W., and Tanaka, K. (2003). Neuronal correlates of goal-based motor selection in the prefrontal cortex. Science 301, 229–232.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Im, K.-S., Cheong, S.-K., Powell, C. F., Lai, M.-C. D., and Wang, J. (2013). Unraveling the geometry dependence of in-nozzle cavitation in high-pressure injectors. Sci. Rep. 3, 2067.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Ziegler, M. (2012). Geotechnische Nachweise nach EC 7 und DIN 1054. Weinheim, Germany: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.
An edited book
Rabinovich, V. (2013). Antenna Arrays and Automotive Applications. , ed. N. Alexandrov New York, NY: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Liu, H., and Qian, D. (2015). “A Terminal-Sliding-Mode-Based Frequency Regulation,” in Advances in Neural Networks – ISNN 2015: 12th International Symposium on Neural Networks, ISNN 2015, Jeju, South Korea, October 15-18, 2015, Proceedings Lecture Notes in Computer Science., eds. X. Hu, Y. Xia, Y. Zhang, and D. Zhao (Cham: Springer International Publishing), 36–42.

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 Physiology.

Blog post
Hale, T. (2015). Greek City Trials Eco-Friendly Driverless Buses. 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 (1990). U.S.-Korea Fighter Coproduction Program. 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
Forshey, T. M. (2013). Neural basis of the neurological diagnostic power of vibrotactile sensory testing.

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
Oren, M. B. (2017). The Iran Deal Isn’t Worth Saving. New York Times, A23.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Hyun, 2014).
This sentence cites two references (Nicholson and Thornberry, 2003; Hyun, 2014).

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

  • Two authors: (Nicholson and Thornberry, 2003)
  • Three or more authors: (Im et al., 2013)

About the journal

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

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