Submission of a manuscript implies that it reports unpublished work and that neither itself, nor parts of it, have been published or are under consideration for publication elsewhere. By submitting a manuscript to EMBO Molecular Medicine, the authors guarantee that they have the appropriate authority from their employers and/or funding agencies to publish the work. Any related work under consideration, review, and revision or accepted for publication elsewhere should accompany the submission if they are relevant to its scientific assessment.
EMBO Molecular Medicine reserves the right not to publish material that has already been pre-published (either in electronic or other media). EMBO Molecular Medicine does allow prior publication on recognized community preprint servers (e.g. arXiv) for review by other scientists in the field before formal submission to the journal. The details of the preprint server concerned and any accession numbers must be included in the cover letter accompanying submission of the manuscript.
Submission of a paper implies that all authors have seen and approved the manuscript and its contents, and that they are aware of the responsibilities connected to authorship. Signatures from all the authors are not required; it is the corresponding author's responsibility to obtain agreement from all authors supporting the submission. All authors will be notified upon receipt of a new manuscript and upon acceptance of a manuscript, but the editorial office corresponds only with the Corresponding Author, whose responsibility it is to communicate with all other authors.
The nature of every author's contribution must be specified in the manuscript under the heading "Author Contributions".
Our authorship policies conform to international standards (see, for example, http://www.icmje.org/ethical_1author.html).
USE OF LIVING ORGANISMS AND ANIMAL WELFARE
For Research Articles and Reports submitted to EMBO Molecular Medicine reporting experiments on live vertebrates and/or higher invertebrates, the corresponding author must confirm that all experiments were performed in accordance with relevant guidelines and regulations. The manuscript must include a statement in the Materials and Methods identifying the institutional and/or licensing committee approving the experiments, including any relevant details. Occasionally, submitted manuscripts may contain data or describe experiments that raise ethical concerns about animal welfare. The editors reserve the right to consult with appropriate experts and reject manuscripts that contain experiments, which do not conform to NIH or MRC guidelines for animal welfare. [For further information see: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/olaw/olaw.htm; http://www.mrc.ac.uk/Ourresearch/Ethicsresearchguidance/Useofanimals/index.htm].
For experiments involving human subjects the submission must include a statement that informed consent was obtained from all subjects and that the experiments conformed to the principles set out in the WMA Declaration of Helsinki [http://www.wma.net/en/30publications/10policies/b3/] and the NIH Belmont Report [http://ohsr.od.nih.gov/guidelines/belmont.html]. Editors or referees may request further documentation confirming that this is the case. Additionally, authors must identify the institutional committee that approved the experiments.
Any restrictions on the availability or on the use of human data or samples should be clearly specified in the manuscript. These restrictions may detract from the overall impact of a study and its reproducibility, and, therefore, will be taken into account in the editorial decision.
On occasion, submitted papers may contain aspects that raise concerns about possible dual use of the reported research. Any such potential biosecurity implications should be explicitly described by the authors in their cover letter at submission. Referees should discuss any such concerns in direct correspondence with the editors. We encourage authors and referees to consult the definitions and recommendations formulated by the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB) regarding the oversight of dual use life sciences research (http://oba.od.nih.gov/biosecurity/biosecurity_documents.html) and the list of select agents and toxins issued by APHIS/CDC (http://www.selectagents.gov/).
The threat posed by the potential abuse of certain experimental data or material for bioweapons, terrorist or other criminal activities may require that editors balance the risks and benefits of publication. The ultimate decision whether to publish is the prerogative of the editors after consultation with experts in biosafety, biosecurity, and public and environmental health.
AVAILABILITY OF PUBLISHED MATERIAL AND DATA
A condition of publication in all EMBO publications is that authors are required to make available to colleagues any of the biological material and reagents that were originally reported in the published research and that are not available from commercial sources. Material Transfer Agreements (MTA) should not pose undue qualifications and/or restrictions on the use of such materials (see also below). Materials should be shared with non-commercial users on a not-for-profit basis, although reasonable costs for their production, storage and distribution may be charged.
MTAs that limit the reuse of material, reagents, software or data should be submitted together with the original submission and may be published as Supporting Information.
Datasets obtained by experimentation, computation or data mining should be made freely available, without restriction. This holds without exception to data that are central and integral to the findings reported in the paper and it is strongly recommended for any remaining associated data.
Software should be described in sufficient detail to allow reproduction of the underlying algorithms by others. This may be achieved by providing the appropriate narrative or mathematical description, pseudocode and, possibly but not obligatorily, the source code. If a specific implementation is the focus of the study, it is strongly recommended that non-commercial users be granted free access to this implementation.
Any restrictions that may detract from the overall impact of a study and that are central to the findings reported will be taken into account in the final editorial decision. Readers who encounter persistent refusal by the authors to comply with these policies should contact the Chief Editor of the journal. Conversely, authors who have legal, ethical or security concerns about the possible abuse or misuse of the material requested by a specific institution should also contact the editors, who may review the requests and consult with experts whether it is prudent to reject a specific sharing request.
In cases where editors are unable to resolve a complaint, the journal may refer the breach of publication rules to the funding and/or host institution of the author. The editors reserve the right to retract a paper persistently in breach of the journal's materials sharing policies or to publish a formal note of concern that specific materials are not available.
CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
In the interests of transparency and to help editors and reviewers assess any potential bias, EMBO Molecular Medicine requires authors of original research papers to declare any competing commercial interests in relation to the submitted work. Any interest or relationship, financial or otherwise that might be perceived as influencing an author's objectivity is considered a potential source of conflict of interest. These must be disclosed when directly relevant or indirectly related to the work that the authors describe in their manuscript. Potential sources of conflict of interest include but are not limited to patent or stock ownership, membership of a company board of directors, membership of an advisory board or committee for a company, and consultancy for or receipt of speaker's fees from a company. The existence of a conflict of interest does not preclude publication in this journal. It is difficult to specify a threshold at which a financial interest becomes significant, but as a practical guideline, we would suggest this to be any undeclared interest that could embarrass you were it to become publicly known. Referees and editors are also subject to Conflict of Interest regulations.
If the authors have no conflict of interest to declare, they must also state this at submission.
It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to review this policy with all authors and to collectively list in the cover letter, in the manuscript (in the footnote, Conflict of Interest or Acknowledgments section), and in the online submission system ALL pertinent commercial and other relationships.
The editorial staff of EMBO Molecular Medicine is strongly committed to maintaining high standards of integrity of the published scientific record. The journal requests that authors take note of and adhere to guidelines established by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Research Integrity (http://ori.dhhs.gov). The journal will investigate suspected instances of scientific fraud, inappropriate image manipulation, plagiarism, duplicate publication and other cases that violate research ethics. Depending on the outcome of these investigations, the journal may opt to publish errata or corrigenda, or, in cases of serious scientific misconduct, either to ask authors to retract their paper, or to impose retraction on them. In such cases, the authors' employers may also be contacted. As a matter of policy, the journal will collaborate with independent institutional investigations into misconduct and usually accept the outcome of such investigations.
An erratum is notification of an important error made by the journal, whereas a corrigendum is notification of an important error made by the author(s).
Refutations of articles published in EMBO Molecular Medicine can be considered for the Correspondence section of the journal. Such correspondence will almost always include data to support the arguments of the correspondent. The original authors of that article will be offered the opportunity to respond side-by-side with the correspondence. Both pieces will be peer reviewed at the discretion of the editor and acceptance depends on the strength of the arguments raised as well as the importance of the matter to a general readership. Publication of the correspondence does not automatically entail publication of a response of the authors of the challenged research paper.
After one round of correspondence, EMBO Molecular Medicine will consider the matter closed and will not publish further exchanges.
EMBO Molecular Medicine is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).
DATA COLLECTION AND PRESENTATION
Presented data must represent the findings in a fair and accurate manner. This includes appropriate statistical analysis and image processing. For further details, please refer to these guidelines.
The editors reserve the right to request original versions of figures and the source data that were used to assemble the figure from the authors of a paper under consideration, or of a paper already published in EMBO Molecular Medicine.
Plagiarism includes both the theft or misappropriation of intellectual property and the substantial unattributed textual copying of another's work. EMBO Molecular Medicine uses CrossCheck, a multi-publisher initiative to screen submitted content for plagiarism, to detect overlapping and similar text (including self-plagiarism) prior to publication. To find out more about CrossCheck, visit http://www.crossref.org/crosscheck.html.
The editors require that any information published in the EMBO publications represent a substantially novel contribution to the scientific record. Any manuscript submitted should therefore not contain content that has been formally published in a peer-reviewed publication or another citable form, whether in print or electronic. This includes websites, blogs and news media, which are permanently and publicly available.
Subject to licensing restrictions, EMBO publications do consider manuscripts that include information that has been previously discussed by the authors at scientific conferences in the form of posters, talks, abstracts, meeting reports or webcasts, as long as the manuscript adds substantial new information over the published, citable record. Manuscripts may be posted prior to submission on recognized pre-publication platforms dedicated to discussion among peers, such as preprint servers (for example ArXiv). Links to online resources, such as preprint servers, blogs, and websites, should be cited in the text only, and should be available long-term (e.g. permalinks or DOI wherever possible). URLs should not appear in the reference list. EMBO publications will also consider manuscripts based on unpublished academic theses released in accordance with institutional rules.
Authors should include any manuscripts under review or accepted for publication elsewhere if they are relevant to the submission's scientific assessment and all relevant previously published information has to be explicitly cited. It is at the discretion of the editors whether this information prevents subsequent publication.
Any text, data, material, images, ideas or quotes should be attributed to the original source by formal citation in the appropriate context. Attribution is essential; this includes articles by the same authors and information that is published in a venue other than a recognized scientific journal. If necessary, authors should seek permission to use the material from the copyright holder in accordance to licensing stipulations.
Comprehensive and accurate citation of the relevant literature is essential. We require citation of the primary literature wherever appropriate. To enable this, we have removed any limits on the total number of references in the bibliography, and the reference list is no longer subject to manuscript length format requirements (for details, see below).
The content of papers and any associated press releases is strictly embargoed until the official date of publication of a manuscript. Accepted contributions can be discussed with the media from one week before the publication date provided the journalist respects the embargo date. We will press release selected papers with summaries. Authors may arrange their own publicity, but must adhere to the embargo conditions and are encouraged to contact the editorial office. Further details can be provided by the editorial office. (firstname.lastname@example.org).
All submissions are initially assessed by a dedicated Editor of the journal and may also be evaluated by an appropriate Senior Editor, Editorial Advisory Board member, or other external expert advisor. Only manuscripts judged by the editors to be potentially suitable for publication in EMBO Molecular Medicine are sent out for formal peer review, so that manuscripts with a low probability of success can be returned to the authors without delay. Manuscripts are generally reviewed by three appropriate experts selected by the editors. Based on their arguments and recommendations, the decision concerning publication, revision or rejection is taken, sometimes after further consultation with the referees, the editorial advisory board or indeed the authors. Revisions are invited only for manuscripts that have a high probability of acceptance after one major round of revision. Authors may appeal decisions if there is concrete evidence for a misunderstanding or mistake at the editorial or referee level. Appeals are evaluated in depth and without prejudice.
Further information on the journal's peer review process can be found in our Guide for Referees
TRANSPARENT PEER REVIEW PROCESS
EMBO Molecular Medicine makes the editorial process transparent for all accepted Research Articles and Reports, by publishing as an online supplementary document (the Peer Review Process File, PRPF) all correspondence between authors and the editorial office relevant to the decision process. This will include all referee comments directed to the authors, as well as the authors' point-by-point responses. Internal communications and informal consultations between editors, editorial advisors or referees will remain excluded from these documents. Importantly, referee anonymity will be strictly maintained. Authors have the possibility to opt out of the transparent process at any stage prior to publication.
To further facilitate transparency, EMBO Molecular Medicine has removed the "Confidential Comments" field from our referee reporting forms. This is to ensure that the authors receive all information pertinent to the decision made on a manuscript. Referees should be aware that all comments will be transmitted to the authors and the other referees. Should there be any issues with the manuscript, in particular concerns about ethical standards, data integrity, biosecurity, or conflicts of an academic or commercial nature that need to be communicated directly and confidentially to the editor, this can be done by email (email@example.com).
Please see the following editorial for more information on these policies: Transparency and accountability.
EMBO Molecular Medicine is editorially independent of its publisher Wiley-Blackwell and of the other EMBO Scientific Publications.
Authors can choose to transfer manuscripts rejected from EMBO Molecular Medicine to any of the other three EMBO Publications (The EMBO Journal, EMBO reports, Molecular Systems Biology) by following the instructions appended to the editorial decision letter. Manuscripts transferred post-review will automatically include the referees' reports and identities, and the editors will aim to use these reports in arriving at a rapid decision. Editors may choose to seek additional advice from referees or editorial advisory board members in cases where this would enhance informed decision-making.
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GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR SUBMISSION
The Editors reserve the right to return manuscripts that are not in accordance with the following instructions. However, manuscript will not be rejected out of hand for format reasons: while published manuscripts are expected to conform tightly to the following guidelines, this is not a requirement at first submission.
Manuscripts must be written in clear and concise English and be intelligible to a broad readership. Prior to submission, authors may benefit from having their manuscript reviewed for clarity by colleagues and/or by using one of the many English language-editing services that are available.
ORIGINAL RESEARCH ARTICLES
EMBO Molecular Medicine publishes original research in two main formats:
Articles and Reports
Manuscripts for primary research articles can be up to approximately 60,000 characters (including spaces) in length. This includes title page, abstract and figure legends, but excludes references, tables and supporting material. Should your manuscript exceed this length, some material can be moved into the Supporting Information section (see below).
Please use 'Times' font at 10 or 12-point size for all text pages, 'Symbol' font for non-Latin characters, and 'Arial or Sans-serif' font for lettering on figures. 'Courier' font may be used for sequence data. Number each page at the bottom (Title page is 1).
Articles should be divided into the following sections:
- Title page
- Materials and methods
- Author Contributions
- Conflict of Interest
- The Paper Explained
- For More Information
- Figure legends
- Supporting Information
Reports are short publications focusing on a particularly provocative and novel aspect of a study. Reports should have an Abstract phrased in terms that are comprehensible to readers outside the discipline. Results and Discussion sections can be combined. The remaining sections are organized as described above for Articles.
The total character count (including spaces) for Reports, excluding the Material and Methods section, tables and supporting material, but including title page, abstract, figure legends and references should not exceed 22,000 characters (the exact character count to be stated on the title page). Reports have, in principle, a maximum of 3 Figures. Manuscripts exceeding this limit at submission may be returned to the authors for amendment. Please consider including a Supporting Information section (see below) if your manuscript exceeds the above limitations.
The title should be short and informative, and should not contain any abbreviations (for example, Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition should not be abbreviated to EMT). However, commonly used gene or protein acronyms are acceptable. The total length of the title should not exceed 175 characters (including spaces). Serial titles are not accepted.
The full name of each author should be given and surnames underlined. Multiple first-authorships are acceptable and should be indicated. Numbers in superscript should be used to indicate the department, institution, city, and country for each author. Corresponding Authors should also indicate telephone and fax number as well as e-mail address. Any changes of address may also be given in numbered footnotes. It is possible to name more than one author as the correspondent of a published article, although we will by default address all correspondence to the single author listed as Corresponding Author upon submission.
Please provide a running title of no more than 50 characters including spaces.
Up to five keywords, which may or may not appear in the title, should be given in alphabetical order, below the abstract.
This should be a single paragraph not exceeding 175 words. The Abstract should be comprehensible to readers before they have read the paper, and abbreviations should be avoided where possible (as for the title). Reference citations within the abstract are not permitted. The abstract should describe all key novel findings of the study.
The Introduction should be succinct and without subheadings. It should provide only the necessary background information, rather than comprise a comprehensive review of the field. Citation of the primary literature is required where appropriate (see editorial policies).
The Results section, and associated figures, tables and Supporting Information, must accurately describe the findings of the study. Figure order should follow the text. Detailed methodological descriptions should be restricted to the Materials and Methods section. 'Data not shown' is not permitted (see below): all significant data should be displayed in the main figures or Supporting Information.
The Discussion should accurately interpret the results, but not be repetitive with the Results section. Authors are encouraged to discuss their work in the broader context. Related published data must be appropriately discussed and cited. Speculation is allowed but should be clearly labelled as such.
Materials and Methods
This section should contain sufficient detail so that all experimental procedures can be repeated by others, in conjunction with cited references. Reagents must be described in such a way as to allow readers to identify them unequivocally and/or reproduce them. For example, antibodies epitopes should be described and siRNA and other probe sequences must be provided. In cases where detailed methods cannot be described within the length limits of the article, additional Materials and Methods can be included as Supporting Information. This additional information should, however, not be of immediate importance for the understanding of the manuscript, and it is not permissible to move the entire Materials and Methods section into the online supplement.
These should be placed at the end of the text and not in footnotes. Personal acknowledgements should precede those of institutions or agencies. Grant numbers are permissible. Dedications are discouraged.
EMBO Molecular Medicine requires a statement specifying the contributions of every author. Further details on authorship can be found here.
Conflict of Interest
EMBO Molecular Medicine requires a statement specifying whether or not the authors have a Conflict of Interest (see above for details). In the case of a Conflict of Interest, this must be specified.
The Paper Explained
EMBO Molecular Medicine articles are accompanied by a structured summary of the article to emphasize the major findings of the paper and their medical implications for the non-specialist reader. Please provide a summary accessible to non-specialists and specialists alike, highlighting the medical issue you are addressing (heading: PROBLEM), the results obtained (heading: RESULTS), and their clinical impact (heading: IMPACT). This may be edited to ensure that readers understand the significance and context of the research. Please refer to any of our published primary research articles for an example.
For More Information
There is space at the end of each article to list relevant web links for further consultation by our readers. Examples include patient associations, relevant databases, OMIM/proteins/genes links or author's websites.
As a matter of policy, EMBO Molecular Medicine requires the citation of primary literature (over review articles) wherever appropriate. Authors are responsible for the accuracy of the references. Authors are responsible for ensuring that the related literature is accurately and comprehensively discussed and cited. Review articles should only be cited for general background information, the proposal of certain concepts or similar purposes, whereas primary research articles should be preferentially be referenced to introduce the question being addressed or to support the conclusions and interpretations of the results. Articles in press can be cited with the explicit permission of the corresponding author of the study; the journal name has to be included and, where available, the Digital Object Identifier. Reference formatting information can be found here.
Figure legends should contain sufficient information to allow the reader to follow the data presented without referring back to the text, but should not be redundant with the Results section. Each figure must contain a heading, and each panel a subheading. General text applying to all subpanels should be placed before the subheadings. All symbols and abbreviations used in the figure must be defined, unless they are common abbreviations or have already been defined in the text. Experimental details should, where possible, be given in the Materials and Methods section, and not repeated in the figure legends. Legends should be limited to 350 words in length.
EMBO Molecular Medicine does not permit citation of "Data not shown". All data referred to in the paper should be displayed in the main or supporting figures. "Unpublished observations" may be referred to in exceptional cases, where these are data peripheral to the major message of the paper and are intended to form part of a future or separate study. Personal communications (Author name(s), personal communications) must be authorised in writing by those involved, and the authorisation sent to the editorial office at time of submission. Care should be taken that embargo policies are not contravened. References to manuscripts in preparation or submitted, but not yet accepted, should be cited in the text as (Author names(s), in preparation), and should not be included in the list of references. Copies of such manuscripts should be enclosed at submission for reviewing purposes where relevant, as should manuscripts in press, which should be cited in the reference list (see below).
Conventions and Abbreviations
In general, the journal follows conventions given in Scientific Style and Format: The CBE Manual for Authors, Editors and Publishers (1994) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 6th edn. Please follow Chemical Abstracts and its indexes for chemical names. For guidance in the use of biochemical terminology follow the recommendations issued by the IUPAC-IUBMB Joint Commission on Biochemical Nomenclature. In general, genes and genotypes should be indicated in italics; proteins and phenotypes should not be italicized.
Authors should use approved gene and gene product nomenclature and apply the italicization and capitalization formatting as appropriate for each organism's standard nomenclature. Please consult the appropriate nomenclature databases for correct gene names and symbols. Some useful general resources are: Entrez Gene (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gene); UniProt (http://www.uniprot.org/).
Try to restrict the use of abbreviations to SI symbols (standard units of measurements) and those recommended by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC). Abbreviations should be defined in brackets after their first mention in the text, not in a list of abbreviations. SI symbols and symbols of chemical elements may be used without definition in the body of the paper. Abbreviations of standard biochemical compounds, e.g. ATP, DNA, nucleotides in nucleic acids, and amino acids in proteins, need not be defined. Common language abbreviations, such as e.g. or i.e., should not be used.
OTHER ARTICLE TYPES
Reviews provide the reader with the background to, and a broad overview of a particular topic related to molecular medicine, while noting the most recent developments in the field. They are supplemented with explanations for non-specialist readers, online links to relevant sources of additional information as well as a Pending Issues section. Reviews must be based on published data. The total character count for a Review, including spaces, figure legends and references, may not exceed 50,000 characters and the exact character count should be stated on the front page of the manuscript. We strongly encourage authors to include explanatory Figures and Tables. Our in-house graphics editor will aid in the preparation of the final figures for publication if a review is accepted. Reviews are usually commissioned but can also be submitted. All manuscripts submitted for this section will be peer-reviewed and may be extensively edited.
Bridge the Gap
Bridge the Gap articles will help both basic and clinical researchers to better understand each other's perspectives and define common goals. Authors are encouraged to suggest new strategies and avenues of investigation that may fill the gaps they perceive as existing between the discovery of a biological mechanism and the application of the resultant concepts to the better understanding of a specific disease, its diagnosis, prevention or treatment. Alternatively, from a clinical perspective, authors may highlight disease phenotypes that they consider to be poorly understood in molecular terms and suggest lines of research that would lead to such understanding. Bridge the Gap articles are supplemented with explanations for non-specialist readers and online links to relevant sources of additional information. The total character count, including spaces, figure legends and references, may not exceed 30,000 characters and the exact character count should be stated on the front page of the manuscript. We strongly encourage including explanatory figures, models and tables.
Bridge the Gap articles are usually commissioned but can also be submitted. All manuscripts submitted for this section will be peer-reviewed and may be extensively edited.
Closeup articles are short, focused highlights of a specific development [often an original article(s) published in our journal or elsewhere] in our understanding of a clinically relevant issue. They are aimed at non-specialist readers and are supplemented with explanatory text and online links to relevant sources of additional information. The total character count for a Closeup, including spaces, figure legends and references, may not exceed 10,000 characters and the exact character count should be stated on the front page of the manuscript. The number of references should not exceed 10. We strongly encourage authors to include an explanatory figure. Closeups are usually commissioned by the Editors. We are also open to original un-invited submissions but would urge you to contact the Editorial Office beforehand. All manuscripts submitted for this section will be peer-reviewed and may be extensively edited.
Meeting Reports should avoid being a catalogue of the talks and posters presented; rather, they should be understood as an opportunity to write a short update of a given field/topic, describing a subset of the most interesting, surprising or important results communicated at the meeting. Meeting Reports should only report on novel data and avoid reviewing primary research articles that were publicly available before the meeting took place. They should be submitted within 3 weeks of the meeting.
Authors must obtain permission from the speakers referenced to discuss their work and gain their approval of the specific text in which their work is discussed before submission to EMBO Molecular Medicine, in order to ensure that speakers are not misquoted. Submission of a Meeting Report to EMBO Molecular Medicine means that the author has obtained such permission and may be required to supply it, on request by the editors. The Meeting Report should be no longer than 15,000 characters in length, including spaces, references and figure legends. A maximum of 10 references are permitted.
Editorial and Perspective
Editorials and Perspectives are opinion pieces that focus on issues of high importance to biomedical research, the corresponding research communities and human health in general. These are short pieces of approximately 1000 words. Editorials are written by our editors, while Perspectives are invited by the journal editors. They are non peer-reviewed opinion pieces that focus on a particular scientific or sociopolitical topic pertinent to the Molecular Medicine community. They are intended to reflect primarily the views of the author(s) on the issue under review and authors are encouraged to put forward their own ideas and opinions.
A Correspondence is a flexible format that may include anything of interest to the journal's readers, from policy debates to announcements to 'matters arising' from research papers. A Correspondence may describe primary research data, but only one Figure and one Table are allowed. A Correspondence has no abstract and should be limited to 1000 words in principle. The number of references should not exceed 10 for either the Correspondence or its Reply. Supporting Information can in principle only be in the form of structured data or dataset files.
Authors must submit a competing financial interests statement, which is included only if they declare that they have competing interests. In cases where a Correspondence is critical of a previous research paper, the authors are normally given the option of publishing a brief reply. Criticism of opinions or other secondary matter does not involve an automatic right of reply.
Refutations and commentaries on previously published articles are always peer reviewed. Other types of Correspondence may be peer reviewed at the editors' discretion.
GENERAL FORMATTING GUIDELINES
The Editorial Office will only accept text files in RTF or MS Word format. The final character count must be clearly indicated on the title page of the manuscript. Manuscripts that do not comply with the formatting guidelines, or exceed the length restrictions, may be returned to the authors for amendment.
Please submit the full text (including figure legends, tables, and references) as a single MS Word or RTF file.
Figures and supporting figures should be presented in the order they are mentioned in the text.
Figures should be labelled in consecutive Arabic numerals. The final size of figures will be between 82 mm and 172 mm wide on the printed page. Please bear this in mind when submitting your manuscript for review and allow for sufficient resolution at a suitable size.
Figures divided into parts should be labelled with an upper case, bold letter (Helvetica Font large enough to remain readable even if the figure is reduced upon publication). Figures with several parts should also be in proportion, with consistently sized lettering so that the whole figure can be reduced by the same amount to the smallest size at which the essential details are visible. Use Courier font for sequence data and Symbol font for any symbols.
All lettering should be done using standard fonts (Helvetica, Times, Symbol, Courier) and retained in a separate layer (if possible) so that the production team can adapt any labels to the Journal's style if necessary. All fonts used for labelling the figures should also be embedded in the final files if the software package offers this option.
Scale bars, rather than magnification factors, should be used, with the length of the bar defined in the legend rather than on the bar itself. In general, visual cues on the figure itself are preferred rather than verbal explanations (for example, 'broken line' or 'filled black triangles') in the legend.
When preparing figures of microscopy images, please note that we strongly encourage the use of colours that are suitable for colour-blind readers: for example, the use of magenta/green is preferred over red/green for 2-channel images.
For publication, we use TIFF and EPS files in PC or Macintosh format, preferably from Photoshop or Illustrator software. We cannot accept Freehand, Canvas, CorelDRAW or MacDrawPro files. These files must be converted to postscript (eps) format. For any figures submitted in Photoshop or tiff format we require layered files to be sent whereby all text, arrows or additional attributes are placed on individual layers within the file. For line art/charts/graphs we prefer to work with Adobe Illustrator AI or EPS files. We can also accept high-resolution PDF files.
All digitized images submitted with the final revision of the manuscript must be of high quality and have resolutions of at least 300 d.p.i. for colour, 600 d.p.i. for greyscale, 400 d.p.i. for photos, and 800 d.p.i. for line art.
EMBO Molecular Medicine does not have colour charges for figures, and authors are therefore welcome to submit full colour figures; however, as all articles published by EMBO Molecular Medicine are fully open access and therefore immediately freely available to read, download and share, there is an article publication charge to cover the cost of publishing. Details on the article publication charge can be found here.
Figures must accurately reflect the results of the experiments. Appropriate controls, markers and scale bars should be included in all panels. Statistical tests must be clearly defined and appropriate to the data.
Images submitted with a manuscript for review should be minimally processed (for instance, to add arrows to a micrograph). Authors should retain their unprocessed data and metadata files, as editors may request them to aid in manuscript evaluation. If unprocessed data are unavailable, manuscript evaluation may be stalled until the issue is resolved.
A certain degree of image processing is acceptable for publication (and for some experiments, fields and techniques is unavoidable), but the final image must correctly represent the original data and conform to community standards. The guidelines below will aid in accurate data presentation at the image processing level; authors must also take care to exercise prudence during data acquisition, where misrepresentation must equally be avoided. Where appropriate, manuscripts should include a Supporting Methods section that describes for each figure the pertinent instrument settings, acquisition conditions and processing changes, as described in this guide.
Authors should list all image acquisition tools and image processing software packages used. Authors should document key image-gathering settings and processing manipulations in the Methods.
Images gathered at different times or from different locations should not be combined into a single image, unless it is stated that the resultant image is a product of time-averaged data or a time-lapse sequence. If juxtaposing images is essential, the borders should be clearly demarcated in the figure and described in the legend.
The use of touch-up tools, such as cloning and healing tools in Photoshop, or any feature that deliberately obscures manipulations, is to be avoided.
Processing (such as changing brightness and contrast) is appropriate only when it is applied equally across the entire image and is applied equally to controls. Contrast should not be adjusted so that data disappear. Excessive manipulations, such as processing to emphasize one region in the image at the expense of others (for example, through the use of a biased choice of threshold settings), is inappropriate, as is emphasizing experimental data relative to the control.
When submitting revised final figures upon conditional acceptance, authors may be asked to submit original, unprocessed images.
Electrophoretic gels and blots
Positive and negative controls, as well as molecular size markers, should be included on each gel and blot. For previously characterized antibodies, a citation must be provided. For antibodies less well characterized in the system under study, a detailed characterization that demonstrates not only the specificity of the antibody, but also the range of reactivity of the reagent in the assay, should be published as Supporting Information.
The display of cropped gels and blots in the main paper is permitted if it improves the clarity and conciseness of the presentation. Cropped gels in the paper must retain all important bands, and space (several bandwidths) should be retained above and below the relevant band(s). Vertically sliced images that juxtapose lanes that were non-adjacent in the gel must have a clear separation or a black line delineating the boundary between the gels.
Quantitative comparisons between samples on different gels/blots are discouraged; if this is unavoidable, the figure legend must state that the samples derive from the same experiment and that gels/blots were processed in parallel. Loading controls must be run on the same blot.
High-contrast gels and blots are discouraged, as overexposure may mask additional bands. Authors should strive for exposures with gray backgrounds. Multiple exposures should be presented in Supporting Information if high contrast is unavoidable. Immunoblots should be surrounded by a black line to indicate the borders of the blot, if the background is faint.
For quantitative comparisons, appropriate reagents, controls and imaging methods with linear signal ranges should be used.
Authors should be prepared to supply the editors with original data on request, at the resolution collected, from which their images were generated. Cells from multiple fields should not be juxtaposed in a single field; instead multiple supporting fields of cells should be shown as Supporting Information.
Specific guidelines: Adjustments should be applied to the entire image. Threshold manipulation, expansion or contraction of signal ranges and the altering of high signals should be avoided. If 'Pseudo-colouring' and nonlinear adjustment (for example 'gamma changes') are used, this must be disclosed. Adjustments of individual colour channels are sometimes necessary on 'merged' images, but this should be noted in the figure legend.
We encourage inclusion of the following with the final revised version of the manuscript for publication:
In the Methods, specify the type of equipment (microscopes/objective lenses, cameras, detectors, filter model and batch number) and acquisition software used. Although we appreciate that there is some variation between instruments, equipment settings for critical measurements should also be listed.
A Supporting Methods section (or part of a larger Methods section) titled 'equipment and settings' should list for each image: acquisition information, including time and space resolution data (xyzt and pixel dimensions); image bit depth; experimental conditions such as temperature and imaging medium; and fluorochromes (excitation and emission wavelengths or ranges, filters, dichroic beamsplitters, if any).
The display lookup table (LUT) and the quantitative map between the LUT and the bitmap should be provided, especially when rainbow pseudocolor is used. If the LUT is linear and covers the full range of the data, that should be stated.
Processing software should be named and manipulations indicated (such as type of deconvolution, three-dimensional reconstructions, surface and volume rendering, 'gamma changes', filtering, thresholding and projection).
Authors should state the measured resolution at which an image was acquired and any downstream processing or averaging that enhances the resolution of the image.
The description of all reported data that includes statistical testing must state the name of the statistical test used to generate error bars and P values, the number (n) of independent experiments underlying each data point (not replicate measures of one sample), and the actual P value for each test (not merely 'significant' or 'P < 0.05').
Descriptive statistics should include a clearly labelled measure of centre (such as the mean or the median), and a clearly labelled measure of variability (such as standard deviation or range). Ranges are more appropriate than standard deviations or standard errors for small data sets. Standard error or confidence interval is appropriate to compare data to a control. Graphs must include clearly labelled error bars for cases where more than two independent experiments have been performed (error bars for replicate samples are less useful). Authors must state whether a number that follows the ± sign is a standard error (s.e.m.) or a standard deviation (s.d.) Figure legends should contain a basic description of n, P and the test applied, and the Methods should contain further discussion of statistical methodology.
Since for complex biological experiments the number of independent repeats of a measurement often has to be limited for practical reasons, statistical measures with a very small n are commonplace. However, statistical measures applied to too small a sample size are not significant and they can suggest a false level of significance. We recommend that the actual individual data from each experiment should be plotted if n < 5, alongside an error bar. In cases where n is small, a justification for the use of the statistical test employed has to be provided. Presenting a single 'typical result' of n experiments is sometimes unavoidable, but should be accompanied by an indication of the variability of data between independent experiments. If n is not based on independent experiments (that is, n merely represents replicates of a measurement), statistics may still be useful, but a detailed description of the repeated measurement is required. For more information on the appropriate use of standard deviation, standard error, and confidence intervals please refer to Cumming et al (2007).
Authors must justify the use of a particular test and explain whether their data conform to the assumptions of the tests.
Tables should be typed on separate sheets and numbered consecutively. Tables should be self-explanatory and include a brief descriptive title. Footnotes to tables indicated by lower-case superscript letters are acceptable, but they should not include extensive experimental detail.
Only articles that have been published or that are accepted for publication at a named publication should be cited in the reference list. In the text of the manuscript, a reference should be cited by author and year of publication; no more than two authors may be cited per reference; 'et al' should be used if there are more than two authors (i.e. Smith & Jones, 2003; Smith et al, 2000). In the reference list, citations should be listed in alphabetical order and then chronologically, with the authors' surnames and initials inverted; where there are more than 10 authors on a paper, the first 10 will be listed, followed by 'et al.'. Publications by the same author(s) in the same year should be identified with a, b, c after the year of publication. The name of each journal should be abbreviated according to Index Medicus. References should therefore be listed as follows:
Akhmedkhanov A, Toniolo P, Zeleniuch-Jacquotte A, Koenig KL, Shore RE (2002) Aspirin and lung cancer in women. Br J Cancer 87: 49-53
Book chapters and books can be cited in the following way:
Price SR, Oubridge C, Varani G, Nagai K (1998) Preparation of RNA-protein complexes for X-ray crystallography and NMR. In RNA-Protein Interaction: Practical Approach, Smith C (ed) pp 37-74. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK
Sambrook J, Fritsch E & Maniatis T (1989) Molecular Cloning: A Laboratory Manual. Cold Spring Harbour Press, Cold Spring Harbour, New York, USA
Papers accepted for publication must be cited with the corresponding author's permission and should include title and all author names (or initials if any of the authors are co-authors of the present contribution), as well as either the DOI, if available, or the term 'in press', as follows:
Bianchi F, Nicassio F, Marzi M, Belloni E, Dall'Olio V, Bernard L, Pelosi G, Maisonneuve P, Veronesi G, Di Fiore PP (2011) A serum circulating miRNA diagnostic test to identify asymptomatic high-risk individuals with early stage lung cancer. EMBO Mol Med DOI: 10.1002/emmm.201100155
Links to online resources and websites should be cited in the text only, and should be available long-term (e.g. permalinks or DOI wherever possible). URLs should not appear in the reference list.
Please download the Endnote Styles to format your manuscript at http://www.endnote.com/support/enstyles.asp.
Supporting Information is peer-reviewed material directly relevant to the conclusions of an article that cannot be included in the PDF version owing to space or format constraints. It is posted on the journal's web site and linked to the published article, and may consist of additional figures, movies or tables, as well as their accompanying legends. Rather than citing "data not shown", such supporting material should be included in the Supporting Information. Supporting Results and Discussion sections are not permitted.
The main article must be complete and self-explanatory without the Supporting Information. Supporting Information should enhance, but not be essential to, a reader's understanding of the paper. While EMBO Molecular Medicine encourages authors to supply additional, extensive descriptions of the materials and methods used in a study as Supporting Information, it is not permissible to move the entire "Materials and methods" section (or any other section of the manuscript) into the online supplement.
Please refer to each supporting item in the body of the text or the figure legends. You should also include the text "Supporting Information is available at EMBO Molecular Medicine Online" at the end of the article and before the references.
Supporting Information should be submitted as a single PDF, including all text and figures (which must be clearly labelled). This PDF file should be labelled "Supporting Information" and should start with a Table of Content that provides clear and easy access to the several sections of Supporting Information, as cited in the main text. All supporting figures and supporting tables should be cited as "Supporting Information Fig 1", "Supporting Information Fig 2", "Supporting Information Table 1", etc. Each figure legend should be written clearly beneath its figure.
The main article file should not include any Supporting Information. Additional data incompatible with the PDF format (e.g. Excel datasheets, movies) can be submitted as separate supporting files. Large tables (more than 50 rows) should be submitted as MS Excel documents (.xls) using the file type "Dataset" to prevent automatic conversion into the PDF format. Please contact the editorial office with any questions concerning unusual file format. Unfortunately, we cannot accept TeX and LaTeX.
File sizes must be as small as possible, so that they can be downloaded quickly. The number of files should be limited to 10, and individual files should not be larger than 10MB (PDF or Excel files), 8MB (movie files) and 6MB (image files). Please seek advice from the editorial office before sending files larger than our maximum size to avoid delays in reviewing and publication.
Supporting Information is not copy-edited, so authors should ensure that it is supplied ready for publication. It cannot be altered, nor new Supporting Information added, after the paper has been accepted for publication. The absence of copy-editing of Supporting Information also means that these files are not included with the proof for checking, but will appear on the journal's website exactly as submitted.
Large-scale datasets, sequences, atomic coordinates and computational models should be deposited in one of the relevant public databases prior to submission (provided private access is available at the database) and authors should include accession codes in the Materials and Methods section. The suggested wording for referring to accession identifiers in a manuscript is the following: "The [protein interaction | microarray | mass spectrometry | protein structure] data from this publication have been submitted to the [name of the database] database [URL] and assigned the identifier [accession | permalink | hashtag]." If necessary, please include in the manuscript the relevant information (username and password) for confidential access by peer-reviewers.
Data for which no suitable public database exists should be included, if possible, as dataset files in Supporting Information. In cases where data cannot be confidentially deposited in a public database, and is too large to be included in Supporting Information, please contact the editorial office for advice on how to make these data available for refereeing purposes.
Functional genomics data
Microarray and sequencing-based functional genomics data should be deposited in the ArrayExpress (http://www.ebi.ac.uk/arrayexpress/), GEO (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/geo/) or CIBEX (http://cibex.nig.ac.jp/index.jsp) databases in compliance to the MIAME (http://www.mged.org/Workgroups/MIAME/miame.html) standards and the MINSEQE (http://www.mged.org/minseqe/) draft proposal.
Proteomics and molecular interactions
Mass spectrometry datasets should be deposited in a machine-readable format (e.g. mzML if possible) in one of the major public database, for example Pride (http://www.ebi.ac.uk/pride/), PeptideAtlas (http://www.peptideatlas.org), or the Proteome Commons Tranche repository (https://proteomecommons.org/tranche/) and authors should follow the MIAPE recommendations (http://www.psidev.info/index.php?q=node/91)
Molecular interaction data should be deposited with a member of the International Molecular Exchange Consortium (IMEx, http://www.imexconsortium.org) prior to submission of the manuscript. Authors should follow the MIMIx recommendations (http://www.psidev.info/index.php?q=node/278).
Nucleotide sequence data should be submitted to an International Nucleotide Sequence Database Collaboration member: GenBank (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/genbank/), EMBL Nucleotide Sequence Database (http://www.ebi.ac.uk/embl/) or DDBJ (http://www.ddbj.nig.ac.jp/).
Human clinical and genomic datasets
In general, EMBO Molecular Medicine encourages authors to provide access to genotype and clinical data with as few restrictions as possible while respecting their ethical obligations to the patients and relevant medical and legal issues. If practically possible and if it is compatible with the individual consent agreement used in the study, such data should be deposited in one of the major public access-controlled repository such as dbGAP (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gap) or EGA (http://www.ebi.ac.uk/ega).
EMBO Molecular Medicine accepts and follows the recommendations of the International Union of Crystallography (IUCr), with regard to the deposition and release of macromolecular structural data. These guidelines are set out in the article by the IUCr Commission on Biological Macromolecules in Acta Crystallographica (2000), D56, 2. In summary, they state that all publications must be accompanied by deposition of both the atomic coordinates and the structure-factor amplitudes in the appropriate database (PDB or NDB). In the case of low-resolution structures for which only a chain trace is reported, a set of C alpha positions and structure-factor amplitudes may be sufficient.
For NMR structures, data deposited should include resonance assignments, and all restraints used in structure determination (NOEs, spin-spin coupling constants, amide exchange rates, etc) and the derived atomic coordinates for both an individual structure and for a family of acceptable structures.
Structures of biological macromolecules solved by electron microscopy must be submitted to the EMDB database at http://www.ebi.ac.uk/msd/Deposition.html. For a brief description of the database, see Tagari et al. (2002) Trends Biochem Sci 27:589.