How to format your references using the The Journal of General Physiology citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for The Journal of General Physiology. 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
Bayer, M. 2014. Botany. Patterning cues from the altruistic sibling. Science. 344:158–159.
A journal article with 2 authors
Magurran, A.E., and P.A. Henderson. 2003. Explaining the excess of rare species in natural species abundance distributions. Nature. 422:714–716.
A journal article with 3 authors
Kaeberlein, T., K. Lewis, and S.S. Epstein. 2002. Isolating “uncultivable” microorganisms in pure culture in a simulated natural environment. Science. 296:1127–1129.
A journal article with 99 or more authors
Michler, P., A. Imamoglu, M.D. Mason, P.J. Carson, G.F. Strouse, and S.K. Buratto. 2000. Quantum correlation among photons from a single quantum dot at room temperature. Nature. 406:968–970.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Taber, D.F. 2008. Organic Synthesis: State of the 2005-2007. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Othieno, H. 2016. Energy Resources in Africa: Distribution, Opportunities and Challenges. J. Awange, editor. Springer International Publishing, Cham. XV, 344 p pp.
A chapter in an edited book
Abegglen, S. 2011. Body, Space and Maps. In Studies in Temporal Urbanism: The urbanTick Experiment. F. Neuhaus, editor. Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht. 59–64.

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 Journal of General Physiology.

Blog post
Luntz, S. 2017. Virus-Like Particles Deliver Treatments To Cancer Cells. IFLScience.


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. 1971. Need To Strengthen Management Control Over the Basic Research Program Administered by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research. 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
An, D. 2017. Improved Flotation of Bastnaesite and Chalcopyrite. University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.

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
Shear, M.D. 2017. Trump Imposes New Travel Ban on 7 Countries. New York Times. A1.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Bayer, 2014).
This sentence cites two references (Bayer, 2014; Magurran and Henderson, 2003).

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

  • Two authors: (Magurran and Henderson, 2003)
  • Three or more authors: (Michler et al., 2000)

About the journal

Full journal titleThe Journal of General Physiology
AbbreviationJ. Gen. Physiol.
ISSN (print)0022-1295
ISSN (online)1540-7748

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