How to format your references using the Practical Neurology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Practical Neurology. 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
Lunt D. Palaeoclimate science: Causes and effects of Antarctic ice. Nature 2014;511:536–7.
A journal article with 2 authors
Ogata H, Claverie J-M. Microbiology. How to infect a Mimivirus. Science 2008;321:1305–6.
A journal article with 3 authors
El-Ali J, Sorger PK, Jensen KF. Cells on chips. Nature 2006;442:403–11.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Tombola F, Pathak MM, Gorostiza P, et al. The twisted ion-permeation pathway of a resting voltage-sensing domain. Nature 2007;445:546–9.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Lee KB. Principles of Microelectromechanical Systems. Hoboken, NJ: : John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 2011.
An edited book
Edwards D, Høyer-Hansen G, Blasi F, et al., editors. The Cancer Degradome: Proteases and Cancer Biology. New York, NY: : Springer 2008.
A chapter in an edited book
Dong L, Chen K. Security Analysis of Real World Protocols. In: Chen K, ed. Cryptographic Protocol: Security Analysis Based on Trusted Freshness. Berlin, Heidelberg: : Springer 2012. 153–213.

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 Practical Neurology.

Blog post
Taub B. Butchered Mastodon 15,000 Years Ago Reveals Earlier Human Presence In Southeastern U.S. IFLScience. 2016. (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. Telecommunications: States’ Collection and Use of Funds for Wireless Enhanced 911 Services. Washington, DC: : 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
Anthony PJ. Determining courses of action for educational leaders to achieve Adequate Yearly Progress. 2008.

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
Kishkovsky S. Russian Youth Movement Linked to Jailed Tycoon Has Wide Civic Goals. New York Times. 2003;:112.

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 titlePractical Neurology
AbbreviationPract. Neurol.
ISSN (print)1474-7758
ISSN (online)1474-7766
ScopeGeneral Medicine
Clinical Neurology

Other styles