How to format your references using the Retina citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Retina. 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
Brown A. Obituary: John Templeton (1912-2008). Nature. 2008;454(7202):290.
A journal article with 2 authors
Latch DE, McNeill K. Microheterogeneity of singlet oxygen distributions in irradiated humic acid solutions. Science. 2006;311(5768):1743-1747.
A journal article with 3 authors
Cram DS, Song B, Trounson AO. Genotyping of Rhesus SCNT pluripotent stem cell lines. Nature. 2007;450(7169):E12-4.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Fujisawa T, Hayashi T, Tomita R, Hirayama Y. Bidirectional counting of single electrons. Science. 2006;312(5780):1634-1636.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Garber R. BIM Design. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd; 2014.
An edited book
Mak P-I. Analog-Baseband Architectures And Circuits For Multistandard And Lowvoltage Wireless Transceivers. (U S-P, Martins RP, eds.). Springer Netherlands; 2007.
A chapter in an edited book
Zhang Q, Verma M, Khare S. Epigenetic Regulation of MicroRNA in Colon Cancer. In: Sarkar FH, ed. Epigenetics and Cancer. Springer Netherlands; 2013:85-94.

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 Retina.

Blog post
Fang J. Stem Cell Injections Revitalize Failing Hearts, Trial Results Show. IFLScience. Published April 1, 2014. Accessed October 30, 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. Domestic Aviation: Barriers Continue to Limit Competition. U.S. Government Printing Office; 1997.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Parker HA. Virtual Mate Poaching: A study of the tactics used to poach a potential mate on Social Networking Sites. Published online 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
Rice SE. To Be Great, America Must Be Good. New York Times. June 2, 2017:A21.

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 titleRetina
ISSN (print)0275-004X
ISSN (online)1539-2864
ScopeGeneral Medicine

Other styles