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Author Guidelines

Scope and policy


BIOCELL welcomes articles reporting research on Cell and Molecular Biology, and on the suborganismal and organismal aspects of Vertebrate Reproduction and Development, Invertebrate Biology and Plant Biology. Brief reports are also accepted for publication under special circumstances. Review papers will be considered only after invitation by the Editorial Board.

Manuscripts should be submitted by email to the Editor-in-Chief (Professor R. S. Piezzi, as .doc or .rtf files. The accompanying figures (in separate files) should be in uncompressed .tif files.

All manuscripts are peer-reviewed before acceptance, which is based upon significance and originality of results, and of validity of conclusions. A high quality of figures (and the requested resolution, see below) are also essential for acceptance. The corresponding author is invited to suggest (on the body of the email message) up to four names and email addresses of possible reviewers.

Receipt will be acknowledged to the corresponding author, indicating the identification number which should be mentioned in all future correspondence. As a rule, no correspondence with the other authors is entertained.

Manuscripts are considered on the understanding that their content is not already published or being offered for publication elsewhere.



Form and preparation of manuscripts


Submissions are received by email only ( and they are examined for compliance with the current instructions before peer-reviewing. Submissions which do not meet these specifications will be disregarded.

A submission is composed by (1) the MANUSCRIPT FILE, and (2) the FIGURE FILES.

Arrange sections of the MANUSCRIPT FILE in the following order:

  • Title page
  • Abstract (with no sections nor references, and not exceeding 200 words)
  • Main text
  • References
  • Tables (numbered in Arabic numerals)
  • Figure legends (do not include figures in the manuscript file).

Begin each component on a separate page. Number all pages (starting with the title page), tables and figures in Arabic numerals. Do not number lines.

The title page should contain the following:

1. Main title (in bold letters, not exceeding 200 characters and spaces). The following example will help:

The testis and spermatogenesis in Thais clavigera

2. Full names of all authors, with the family name in capital letters (do not include authors’ academic degrees). The following example will help:

Nicholas FISHER, John MILLER, Anthony BAKER.

3. Running title (not exceeding 50 characters including spaces).


4. Key words: they should be three to five; do not use words which are already in the main title.

5. Title of the corresponding author (e.g., Professor, Dr., Mr., Mrs., Ms.), full name and email address. The title is only intended for correspondence and it will not be used in the printed article.

Main text:

The text should be written in clear, concise English, and it should be easily understandable to a broad readership. Sentences should not begin with abbreviations or numerals.

Main headings should be Introduction, Material and Methods, Results (or Systematic Description), Discussion and Acknowledgements (if necessary) and they should be centered and in capital letters, while just one level of subsidiary headings should be on the left, in italics). Do not number headings. Combining Results and Discussion is not allowed. 

Accepted abbreviations for statistical parameters are: Pn, SD, SEM, df, ns, ANOVA, t.

Other widely used and well known abbreviations may be acceptable, but they should be kept to a minimum and they should be spelled out in the main text the first time each one is used. This is important to adapt to a broad readership (the use of not allowed abbreviations is a frequent cause of needless “to and fro” communications with the corresponding author, with the corresponding time loss). Footnotes should also be avoided.

Physical units, as well as their symbols and abbreviations, should be those of the Système Internationale d’Unités (International System of Units, SI).

Linnean scientific names should be in italics, while higher than generic taxa should not.

The generic name of drugs, as well as all other common names, should be written in low case.

Gene designations should be in low case and in italics, while protein designations should be in regular capital letters.


References in the text should take one of the following forms:

Fisher and Miller (2007) or (Fisher and Miller, 2007). If there are more than two authors: Fisher et al. (2008) or (Fisher et al. 2008).

The following sample phrases may help:

“Contrariwise to the report of Fisher and Miller (2007) some others have shown (Baker et al., 2008)… ”

“Contrariwise to an earlier report (Fisher and Miller, 2007) Baker et al. (2008) have shown …”

The list of references must be arranged alphabetically. Full journal titles should be typed in italics and cited in full with just the volume number in bold. Repeat authors' names and journal titles in multiple entries.

The first and last page of each article should be included. Abstracts of presentations in scientific meetings may be cited, but only if published in a journal, and with the indication “abstr.” after the volume and page numbers.

The following examples may help:

Fisher N, Miller J (2007). An ectaquasperm-like parasperm in an internally fertilizing gastropod. Science 256: 1566-1570.

Fisher N, Miller J, Baker A (2003). Connexins in paraspermatogenesis in the Annelida. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA) 256: 1566-1570.

Fisher N (2007). Paraspermatogenesis. University of Cuyo Press, Mendoza.

Fisher N (2008). Connexins in paraspermatogenesis. In: Perspectives in Invertebrate Reproduction (J Miller, A Baker, eds.), p. 67-86. University of Cuyo Press, Mendoza.

Fisher N, Miller J, Baker A (2003). Connexins in paraspermatogenesis in the Annelida. Biocell 25: 156, abstr.

Do not include additional and non requested information as issue number, month of publication, books’ number of pages, etc.


Tables should be typed on separate sheets, and they should be numbered in Arabic numerals, and cited as such in the Text. Units and the statistics employed should be clearly explained either in the table’s body or in the footnotes to the table.

Figure legends:

They should be self explanatory without reference to the text. Statistical evaluations should indicate the test used. Micrographs magnification should be indicated by scale bars on them, and the size of the scale bar should be indicated in the legend, not on the micrograph. When the same magnification is used for several panels of the same figure, a single scale bar should be used.

Preparing the FIGURE FILES

Figures (either micrographs or line drawings) should be sent as individual files in uncompressed TIFF format (.tif files), in their final size. Authors should choose the final size as 8, 11 or 16 cm wide figures, making sure that the structures they want to show in pictures are clearly recognizable at the chosen size, and that symbols and lettering are easily readable. Line drawings, as well as their symbols and lettering, should also be readable at the chosen size.

In all cases, resolution should be at least 300 dpi in their final size. Both color and black and white micrographs and figures should be prepared in CMYK color mode. Consider that scanning of images produced by an inkjet or laser printer result in image files which are unsuitable for journal printing. Accordingly, graphs should be prepared with dedicated graphic software, not with a word processor program. Also, the photographs should be the original digital ones.

If the uncompressed FIGURE FILES exceed 1 Mb, please send them attached to separate email messages.

Brief notes

These are generally methodological notes, or brief reports that are of wide interest or importance; these are published as rapidly as possible after acceptance. They should not exceed 1,200 words of text, one table or graph and one plate of photographs. Otherwise they must fulfill the instructions for original articles, have a short abstract (150 words) and their sections (i.e., introduction, material and methods, results, a separate discussion, etc.) should not be separated by subheadings.


Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  1. The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  2. The submission file is in OpenOffice, Microsoft Word, RTF, or WordPerfect document file format.
  3. Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  4. The text is single-spaced; uses a 12-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, and tables are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
  5. The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines, which is found in About the Journal.
  6. If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed.

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