How to format your references using the Protein & Cell citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Protein & Cell. 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
Kolodner RD (2000) Guarding against mutation. Nature 407:687, 689
A journal article with 2 authors
Graham LA, Davies PL (2005) Glycine-rich antifreeze proteins from snow fleas. Science 310:461
A journal article with 3 authors
Hochberg YV, Serrano C, Ziedonis R (2015) ENTREPRENEURSHIP. Intangible but bankable. Science 348:1202
A journal article with 5 or more authors
Kawano N, Miyado K, Yoshii N, et al (2014) Absence of CD9 reduces endometrial VEGF secretion and impairs uterine repair after parturition. Sci Rep 4:4701

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
DeMaris A (2004) Regression with Social Data: Modeling Continuous and Limited Response Variables. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ
An edited book
Rovenský J, Payer J, Herold M (eds) (2016) Dictionary of Rheumatology, 2nd ed. 2016. Springer International Publishing, Cham
A chapter in an edited book
Saakov VS, Drapkin VZ, Krivchenko AI, et al (2013) EPR Spectroscopy for Solution of Some Scientific Real-World Problems in Biology, Medicine and Ecology. In: Drapkin VZ, Krivchenko AI, Rozengart EV, et al. (eds) Derivative Spectrophotometry and Electron Spin Resonance (ESR) Spectroscopy for Ecological and Biological Questions. Springer, Vienna, pp 301–348

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 Protein & Cell.

Blog post
Hale T (2017) 4000-Year-Old Funeral Garden Unearthed In Egypt. 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 (2007) Reading First: States Report Improvements in Reading Instruction, but Additional Procedures Would Clarify Education’s Role in Ensuring Proper Implementation by States. 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
Prasad AB (2010) Analyzing comparative sequence data to understand genome function and evolution. Doctoral dissertation, George Washington 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
Loomis G (2012) Carnal Knowledge in a Modern Metropolis: Babylon. New York Times 0

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Kolodner 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Kolodner 2000; Graham and Davies 2005).

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

  • Two authors: (Graham and Davies 2005)
  • Three or more authors: (Kawano et al. 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titleProtein & Cell
AbbreviationProtein Cell
ISSN (print)1674-800X
ISSN (online)1674-8018
Cell Biology
Drug Discovery

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