How to format your references using the Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants. 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
Holland GJ (2009) Oceans. Predicting El Nino’s Impacts. Science 325:47
A journal article with 2 authors
Tang Y, Cohen AE (2011) Enhanced enantioselectivity in excitation of chiral molecules by superchiral light. Science 332:333–336
A journal article with 3 authors
Passarelli L, Rivalta E, Shuler A (2014) Dike intrusions during rifting episodes obey scaling relationships similar to earthquakes. Sci Rep 4:3886
A journal article with 5 or more authors
Tadin D, Lappin JS, Gilroy LA, Blake R (2003) Perceptual consequences of centre-surround antagonism in visual motion processing. Nature 424:312–315

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Willis DO (2013) Business Basics for Dentists. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., West Sussex, UK
An edited book
Lennarčič J, Roth B (eds) (2006) Advances in Robot Kinematics: Mechanisms and Motion. Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht
A chapter in an edited book
Xu Y, Liu J, Hu QM, et al (2010) Improving an SVM-based Liver Segmentation Strategy by the F-score Feature Selection Method. In: Dössel O, Schlegel WC (eds) World Congress on Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering, September 7 - 12, 2009, Munich, Germany: Vol. 25/4 Image Processing, Biosignal Processing, Modelling and Simulation, Biomechanics. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, pp 13–16

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 Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants.

Blog post
Davis J (2015) Levitating Cells Could Help Scientists Figure Out How Drugs Work. In: IFLScience. Accessed 30 Oct 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 (1983) DOD’s Automated Telecommunications Centers Reduce the Impact of Message Volume on Staffing. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Meaux B (2015) Effect of Formation Deformation on Casing Standoff in Highly Deviated and Horizontal Wells. Doctoral dissertation, University of Louisiana

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
Pilon M (2013) Anger and Indifference After a School Ends a Full-Contact Tradition. New York Times D2

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Holland 2009).
This sentence cites two references (Holland 2009; Tang and Cohen 2011).

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

  • Two authors: (Tang and Cohen 2011)
  • Three or more authors: (Tadin et al. 2003)

About the journal

Full journal titlePhysiology and Molecular Biology of Plants
AbbreviationPhysiol. Mol. Biol. Plants
ISSN (print)0971-5894
ISSN (online)0974-0430
ScopePlant Science
Molecular Biology

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