How to format your references using the The International Journal of Developmental Biology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for The International Journal of Developmental Biology (IJDB). 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
TAUXE W (2015). Genome editing: 4 big questions. Nature 528: S17.
A journal article with 2 authors
MECHOULAM R, LICHTMAN AH (2003). Neuroscience. Stout guards of the central nervous system. Science 302: 65–67.
A journal article with 3 authors
TATTERSALL GJ, ANDRADE DV, ABE AS (2009). Heat exchange from the toucan bill reveals a controllable vascular thermal radiator. Science 325: 468–470.
A journal article with 20 or more authors
PEDERSEN IM, CHENG G, WIELAND S, VOLINIA S, CROCE CM, CHISARI FV, DAVID M (2007). Interferon modulation of cellular microRNAs as an antiviral mechanism. Nature 449: 919–922.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
BRAUDEAU E, ASSI AT, MOHTAR RH (2016). Hydrostructural Pedology. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
VU QH (2010). Peer-to-Peer Computing: Principles and Applications, Eds M Lupu and BC Ooi. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
A chapter in an edited book
BU T-M (2008). Adwords Pricing. In Encyclopedia of Algorithms (Ed. M-Y Kao). Springer US, Boston, MA, pp. 7–9.

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 The International Journal of Developmental Biology.

Blog post
ANDREW E (2015). Why Bigger Isn’t Always Better In The World Of Muscle Building. IFLScience. Available at: [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 (2010). Postsecondary Education: College and University Endowments Have Shown Long-Term Growth, While Size, Restrictions, and Distributions Vary. 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
KATZ RL (2014). Graduate nursing students’ perceptions regarding caring for patients with HIV. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach.

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
(NYT) SK (2002). World Briefing | Europe: Russia: Anti-Semitic Violence. New York Times: A10.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Tauxe, 2015).
This sentence cites two references (Mechoulam and Lichtman, 2003; Tauxe, 2015).

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

  • Two authors: (Mechoulam and Lichtman, 2003)
  • Three or more authors: (Pedersen et al., 2007)

About the journal

Full journal titleThe International Journal of Developmental Biology
AbbreviationInt. J. Dev. Biol.
ISSN (print)0214-6282
ISSN (online)1696-3547
ScopeDevelopmental Biology

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