How to format your references using the Physical Biology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Physical 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
Putterman L 2010 Behavior. Cooperation and punishment Science 328 578–9
A journal article with 2 authors
Bays P M and Husain M 2009 Response to Comment on “Dynamic Shifts of Limited Working Memory Resources in Human Vision” Science 323 877
A journal article with 3 authors
Buxbaum A R, Wu B and Singer R H 2014 Single β-actin mRNA detection in neurons reveals a mechanism for regulating its translatability Science 343 419–22
A journal article with 99 or more authors
Song Q, Zhang N, Zhai H, Liu S, Gu Z, Wang K, Sun S, Chen Z, Li M and Xiao S 2014 The combination of high Q factor and chirality in twin cavities and microcavity chain Sci. Rep. 4 6493

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Center for Chemical Process Safety 2008 Inherently Safer Chemical Processes (Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.)
An edited book
Eigen S 2014 Weakly Wandering Sequences in Ergodic Theory ed A Hajian, Y Ito and V Prasad (Tokyo: Springer Japan)
A chapter in an edited book
Kung L Y 2016 The Umbrella Movement and Kairos: The Church’s Theological Encounter with a Political Movement Theological Reflections on the Hong Kong Umbrella Movement ed J K H Tse and J Y Tan (New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan US) pp 107–29

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 Physical Biology.

Blog post
O`Callaghan J 2015 New Horizons At Pluto: What Happens Next? 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 1998 Food Assistance: Child Care Centers Sponsored by Schools Participating in the National School Lunch 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
Wuite J 2006 Spatial and Temporal Dynamics of Three East Antarctic Outlet Glaciers and Their Floating Ice Tongues Doctoral dissertation (Columbus, OH: Ohio State University)

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
Mallozzi V M 2017 For Their Wedding, the Moon Dimmed the Lights New York Times ST13

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

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 titlePhysical Biology
AbbreviationPhys. Biol.
ISSN (print)1478-3967
ISSN (online)1478-3975
Cell Biology
Molecular Biology
Structural Biology

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