How to format your references using the Nature Reviews Genetics citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Nature Reviews Genetics. 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
Pain, E. The class of 2005. Spain: a physicist keen to put things in order. Science 310, 520–521 (2005).
A journal article with 2 authors
Gani, R. & Leach, S. Transmission potential of smallpox in contemporary populations. Nature 414, 748–751 (2001).
A journal article with 3 authors
Baird, P., Downie, J. & Thompson, J. Medicine. Clinical trials and industry. Science 297, 2211 (2002).
A journal article with 6 or more authors
Li, M. et al. From sparse to dense and from assortative to disassortative in online social networks. Sci. Rep. 4, 4861 (2014).

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
MacRoberts. MacRoberts on Scottish Construction Contracts. (John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, 2014).
An edited book
Personal Care Products in the Aquatic Environment. 36, (Springer International Publishing, 2015).
A chapter in an edited book
Custer, L. Undoing Gender: Making the Invisible Visible. in Teaching Gender and Sex in Contemporary America (eds. Haltinner, K. & Pilgeram, R.) 37–44 (Springer International Publishing, 2016).

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 Nature Reviews Genetics.

Blog post
Andrew, E. After 400 Years, Mathematicians Find A New Class Of Solid Shapes. IFLScience (2014). Available at: (Accessed: 30th October 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. FAA’s Proposed Plan for Implementing a Reliability Centered Maintenance Process for Air Traffic Control Equipment. (U.S. Government Printing Office, 2006).

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
McElhoes, J. L. Spatial, Technological, and Functional Variability Among the Prehistoric Ceramics of the Southern California Coast. (California State University, Long Beach, 2017).

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, P. Letter to the Editor 3 -- No Title. New York Times Book ReviewBR8 (1972).

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in superscript:

This sentence cites one reference 1.
This sentence cites two references 1,2.
This sentence cites four references 1–4.

About the journal

Full journal titleNature Reviews Genetics
AbbreviationNat. Rev. Genet.
ISSN (print)1471-0056
ISSN (online)1471-0064
Molecular Biology

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