How to format your references using the Systems Biomedicine citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Systems Biomedicine. 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
Ingham PW. Hedgehog signaling: a tale of two lipids. Science 2001; 294:1879–81.
A journal article with 2 authors
Nielsen TA, Stenstrom P. What are the memory sources of dreaming? Nature 2005; 437:1286–9.
A journal article with 3 authors
Gómez-Llobregat J, Buceta J, Reigada R. Interplay of cytoskeletal activity and lipid phase stability in dynamic protein recruitment and clustering. Sci Rep 2013; 3:2608.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Walker LM, Huber M, Doores KJ, Falkowska E, Pejchal R, Julien J-P, Wang S-K, Ramos A, Chan-Hui P-Y, Moyle M, et al. Broad neutralization coverage of HIV by multiple highly potent antibodies. Nature 2011; 477:466–70.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Bobrow J, Kohn E, Mondragon-Gilmore J, Eggenschwiler J. CliffsNotes® Praxis I®: PPST®. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley Publishing, Inc.; 2009.
An edited book
Stock JA, Esposito MP, Lanteri VJ, Albala DM, editors. Urologic Robotic Surgery. Totowa, NJ: Humana Press; 2008.
A chapter in an edited book
Lu T, Xin F. Sound Transmission Across Sandwich Structures with Corrugated Cores. In: Xin F, editor. Vibro-Acoustics of Lightweight Sandwich Structures. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer; 2014. page 207–23.

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 Systems Biomedicine.

Blog post
Andrews R. Glittery Feathers Found On 120-Million-Year Old Flying Dinosaur [Internet]. IFLScience2016 [cited 2018 Oct 30]; Available from:


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. Indian Affairs: Further Actions on GAO Recommendations Needed to Address Systemic Management Challenges with Indian Education. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office; 2015.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Watts KS. The Effectiveness of a Social Story Intervention in Decreasing Disruptive Behavior in Autistic Children. 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
Dinardo K. Sarah Aciego on Breaking Barriers to Arctic Travel. New York Times2015; :TR3.

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 titleSystems Biomedicine
AbbreviationSyst. Biomed. (Austin)
ISSN (print)2162-8130
ISSN (online)2162-8149

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