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
Kostelecký, V.A. 2014. Precision measurement: The magnetic proton. Nature. 509:571–572.
A journal article with 2 authors
Rathmell, J.C., and C.B. Newgard. 2009. Biochemistry. A glucose-to-gene link. Science. 324:1021–1022.
A journal article with 3 authors
Șenbabaoğlu, Y., G. Michailidis, and J.Z. Li. 2014. Critical limitations of consensus clustering in class discovery. Sci. Rep. 4:6207.
A journal article with 99 or more authors
Lin, F., I.M. Markus, M.M. Doeff, and H.L. Xin. 2014. Chemical and structural stability of lithium-ion battery electrode materials under electron beam. Sci. Rep. 4:5694.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Soustelle, M. 2016. Thermodynamics of Surfaces and Capillary Systems. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Arora, N.K. ed. . 2013. Plant Microbe Symbiosis: Fundamentals and Advances. Springer India, New Delhi. XI, 459 p pp.
A chapter in an edited book
Tuunanen, T., J. Koskinen, and T. Kärkkäinen. 2006. Retrieving Open Source Software Licenses. In Open Source Systems: IFIP Working Group 2.13 Foundation on Open Source Software, June 8–10, 2006, Como, Italy. E. Damiani, B. Fitzgerald, W. Scacchi, M. Scotto, and G. Succi, editors. Springer US, Boston, MA. 35–46.

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
Andrew, E. 2015. How Neutrinos, Which Barely Exist, Just Ran Off With Another Nobel Prize. 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. 2016. Federal Air Marshal Service: Actions Needed to Better Incorporate Risk in Deployment Strategy. 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
Baldasaro, R.E. 2013. Person level analysis in latent growth curve models. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC.

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
Greenhouse, L. 2006. Antitrust Policy Ambiguity To Be on Justices’ Docket. New York Times. C3.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Kostelecký, 2014).
This sentence cites two references (Kostelecký, 2014; Rathmell and Newgard, 2009).

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

  • Two authors: (Rathmell and Newgard, 2009)
  • Three or more authors: (Lin et al., 2014)

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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