How to format your references using the Functional Plant Biology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Functional Plant 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.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
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
Parton RG (2001) Cell biology. Life without caveolae. Science (New York, NY) 293, 2404–2405.
A journal article with 2 authors
Frank SA, Nowak MA (2003) Cell biology: Developmental predisposition to cancer. Nature 422, 494.
A journal article with 3 authors
Ogata H, Nishikawa K, Lubitz W (2015) Hydrogens detected by subatomic resolution protein crystallography in a [NiFe] hydrogenase. Nature 520, 571–574.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Faure J, Glinec Y, Pukhov A, Kiselev S, Gordienko S, Lefebvre E, Rousseau J-P, Burgy F, Malka V (2004) A laser-plasma accelerator producing monoenergetic electron beams. Nature 431, 541–544.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Moir I, Seabridge AG (2006) ‘Military Avionics Systems.’ (John Wiley & Sons, Ltd: Chichester, UK)
An edited book
Rostami A (2011) ‘Terahertz Technology: Fundamentals and Applications.’ (H Rasooli and H Baghban, Eds.). (Springer: Berlin, Heidelberg)
A chapter in an edited book
van Helvoort AAJ (2014) The Personal Knowledge Base Conception of Information Literacy. ‘Information Literacy. Lifelong Learning and Digital Citizenship in the 21st Century: Second European Conference, ECIL 2014, Dubrovnik, Croatia, October 20-23, 2014. Proceedings’. (Eds S Kurbanoğlu, S Špiranec, E Grassian, D Mizrachi, R Catts) Communications in Computer and Information Science. pp. 31–36. (Springer International Publishing: Cham)

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 Functional Plant Biology.

Blog post
Andrew E (2014) Blood Test Could Predict Alzheimer’s 10 Years Before Symptoms Appear. IFLScience.


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 (1980) Basic Sources of International Petroleum Statistics. U.S. Government Printing Office, 112639. (Washington, DC)

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Lee M (2014) A graphic design curriculum development project. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, CA.

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
Saslow L (2006) Village Moves to Deter Illegal Housing. New York Times LI9.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Parton 2001).
This sentence cites two references (Parton 2001; Frank and Nowak 2003).

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

  • Two authors: (Frank and Nowak 2003)
  • Three or more authors: (Faure et al. 2004)

About the journal

Full journal titleFunctional Plant Biology
AbbreviationFunct. Plant Biol.
ISSN (print)1445-4408
ISSN (online)1445-4416
ScopeAgronomy and Crop Science
Plant Science

Other styles