English and language editing

  • Manuscripts must be clearly and briefly written in English.
  • The Editors reserve the right to reject without review those that cannot sufficiently be evaluated because of a poor standard of English.

Text – files and format

The manuscript text (including references, figure legends and simple tables) must be in. doc format. Authors are encouraged to use the word template, downloadable from our website. In addition,

  • Manuscripts should be ordered into sections as follows: Title, Abstract, Introduction, Materials and Methods, Results, Discussion, Funding, Acknowledgements, References, Figures and figure Legends.
  • The maximum number of pages per paper should be 9.
  • All pages should be numbered.
  • Please ensure that the font type is Times New Roman and font size is 12.
  • Special characters should be inserted using the Symbol font.
  • Text should be single-spaced. Do not use footnotes


  • The title must be clearly understandable to a non-specialist. The use of jargon and non-standard abbreviations in the title is not permitted.
  • The title must be followed by authors list, their affiliations and email address of corresponding author


  • The abstract should be a single paragraph, not more than 200 words.
  • References to figures or schemes should NOT be included.
  • References should not normally be included in the abstract.


Details of all funding sources of the work should be given in a distinct section entitled 'Funding'. This should appear before the 'Acknowledgements' section. The following rules must be followed:

  • The sentence must initiate: 'This work was supported by …'
  • The full official funding agency name should be provided, i.e. 'National Institutes of Health', not 'NIH'
  • Grant numbers should be given in brackets: '[grant number xxxx]'
  • Multiple grant numbers should be separated by a comma as follows: '[grant numbers xxxx, yyyy]'
  • Agencies should be separated by a semi-colon ('and' before the last funding agency)

An example: 'This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health [AA123456 to C.S., BB765432 to M.H.]; and the Alcohol & Education Research Council [hfygr667789].


References should be cited in the text in order of appearance and listed numerically in the References section. Please see examples given below for the format of citation. Authors should check all references carefully, and make sure that all references in the Reference section are cited in the text.

  • Note that multiple references under one number are not allowed.
  • Personal communications, unpublished results, manuscripts submitted or in preparation, statistical packages, computer programs and web sites should NOT be included in the References section.
  • Journal names should be abbreviated.
  • When the list of authors is extensive, it is acceptable to list the first 10 authors followed by et al.
  1. Schmitt,E., Panvert,M., Blanquet,S. and Mechulam,Y. (1995) Transition state stabilisation by the 'high' motif of class I aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases: the case of Escherichia coli methionyl-tRNA synthetase. Nucleic Acids Res., 23, 4793-4798.
  2. Huynh,T.V., Young,R.A. and Davies,R.W. (1988) Constructing and screening cDNA libraries in lambdagt10 and lambdagt11. In Glover,D.M. (ed.), DNA Cloning - A Practical Approach. IRL Press, Oxford, Vol. I, pp. 49-78.
  3. Maniatis,T., Fritsch,E.F. and Sambrook,J. (1982) Molecular Cloning: A Laboratory Manual. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, Cold Spring Harbor, NY.
  4. Bernhagen,J., Elkine,B., Geiger,G., Tovar,G. and Vitzthum,F. (1999) Patent DE-198198889.2-44; PCT/WO/EP/99/03047.

Statistical analyses and validations

In Methods and Materials, and corresponding descriptions of actual experimental should contain:

  • The exact sample size (n) for each experimental group/condition, given as a number, not as a range.
  • A description of the sample collection (including how many animals, litters, cultures, etc.) to allow the reader to understand whether the samples represent technical or biological duplicates
  • A report of how many times an experiment shown was replicated in the laboratory.
  • Definitions of statistical methods used such as:
  1. Very common tests, such as t-test, simple χ2 tests, Wilcoxon and Mann-Whitney tests, can be definitely identified by name only, but more complex techniques should be described in detail.
  2. Are tests one-tail or two-tail?
  3. Are there adjustments for multiple comparisons?
  4. Statistical test results, e.g., P values;
  5. Definition of 'center values' as median or average;
  6. definition of error bars as standard deviations (s.d.) or standard error of the mean (s.e.m.)


You are required to submit high-resolution images, if possible with your initial submission but no later than revision stage. A number of diverse file formats are acceptable, including: Tagged Image File Format (.tif), Encapsulated PostScript (.eps), Joint Photographic Experts Group (.jpg), Graphics Interchange Format (.gif), Portable Network Graphics (.png), Microsoft Word (.doc), PowerPoint (.ppt), Excel (.xls) and editable Portable Document Format (PDF). Please ensure that the figure is clearly labelled with its figure number.

  • Lettering should be of a consistent size within each figure.
  • Colour figures: The use of colour in figures may improve clearness in some cases.
  • Representation of experimental data as computer images:
    If primary experimental data are presented in the form of a computer-generated image (such as a PhosphorImager or digital camera), any editing must be defined in detail. Unless specified, it is presumed that the image is unedited. Unsuitable manipulation of images to highlight desired results is not permitted. As you prepare your figures, please obey to the following rules to accurately present your data:
  1. No specific feature within an image may be enhanced, obscured, moved, removed, or introduced.
  2. The grouping of images from different parts of the same gel, or from different gels, fields, or exposures (i.e. the creation of a "composite image") must be made absolutely explicit by the arrangement of the figure (i.e., using dividing lines) and by the text of the figure legend.
  3. Adjustments of brightness, contrast, or color balance are acceptable if they are applied to the whole image and if they do not obscure, remove, or misrepresent any information present in the original, including the background. Modification of brightness or contrast that results in the vanishing of any features in a gel (either bands or cosmetic blemishes) or similar alterations in other experimental images is strictly prohibited.

Supplementary data

  • Manuscripts may include supplementary data to be made available, linked to the online manuscript.
  • The figures and tables in Supplementary data are designated with an 'S'.
  • All Supplementary data MUST be referred to in the main manuscript at an appropriate point in the text.
  • Please note that Supplementary Material is considered as published material and is controlled by the same copyright and permissions rules as the published article to which it belongs.