Preparation of Articles
Please note that original articles must contain the following
Please see below for further details.
Reports of clinical trials must adhere to the registration and
reporting requirements listed in the Editorial Policies.
The uploaded covering letter must state the material
is original research, has not been previously published and has not
been submitted for publication elsewhere while under
consideration. If the manuscript has been previously considered
for publication in another journal, please include the previous
reviewer comments, to help expedite the decision by the Editorial
team. Please include a Conflict of Interest statement.
The title page should bear the title of the paper, the full
names of all the authors and their affiliations, together with the
name, full postal address, telephone and fax numbers and e-mail
address of the author to whom correspondence and offprint
requests are to be sent (this information is also asked for on the
electronic submission form). The title page must also contain a
Conflict of Interest statement (see Editorial Policy section).
The title should be brief, informative, of 150 characters or
less and should not make a statement or conclusion.
The running title should consist of no more than 50 letters
and spaces. It should be as brief as possible, convey the
essential message of the paper and contain no abbreviations.
Authors should disclose the sources of any support for the
work, received in the form of grants and/or equipment and
If authors regard it as essential to indicate that two or more
co-authors are equal in status, they may be identified by an
asterisk symbol with the caption ‘These authors contributed
equally to this work’ immediately under the address list.
The Subject Categories are used to structure
the current and archived online content of The ISME Journal, and
to help readers interested in particular areas of microbial ecology
find relevant information more easily. Subject Categories are also
indicated in the table of contents and on the title page of the
Authors should suggest an appropriate Subject Category for the
submitted manuscript. One category may be selected from the
Microbial population and community ecology
Microbe-microbe and microbe-host interactions
Integrated genomics and post-genomics approaches in
Geomicrobiology and microbial contributions to
Microbial ecology and functional diversity of natural
Microbial ecosystem impacts
Original Articles must be prepared with an unstructured
abstract designed to summarise the essential features of the paper
in a logical and concise sequence.
Materials/Subjects and Methods:
This section should contain
sufficient detail, so that all experimental procedures can be
reproduced, and include references. Methods, however, that have
been published in detail elsewhere should not be described in
detail. Authors should provide the name of the manufacturer and
their location for any specifically named medical equipment and
instruments, and all drugs should be identified by their
pharmaceutical names, and by their trade name if relevant.
Results and Discussion:
The Results section should briefly
present the experimental data in text, tables or figures. Tables and
figures should not be described extensively in the text, either. The
discussion should focus on the interpretation and the significance
of the findings with concise objective comments that describe their
relation to other work in the area. It should not repeat information
in the results. The final paragraph should highlight the main
conclusion(s), and provide some indication of the direction future
research should take.
These should be brief, and should include
sources of support including sponsorship (e.g. university, charity, commercial organisation) and sources of material (e.g. novel
drugs) not available commercially.
Conflict of Interest:
Authors must declare whether or not there
are any competing financial interests in relation to the work
described. This information must be included at this stage and will
be published as part of the paper. Conflict of interest should be
noted in the cover letter and also on the title page. Please see the
Conflict of Interest documentation in the Editorial Policy section
for detailed information.
Only papers directly related to the article should be
cited. Exhaustive lists should be avoided. References should
follow the Havard format. In the text of the manuscript, a
reference should be cited by author and year of publication eg
(Bailey & Kowalchuk, 2006) and (Heidelberg et al, 1994) and listed
at the end of the paper in alphabetical order of first author.
References should be listed and journal titles abbreviated
according to the style used by Index Medicus, examples are given
All authors should be listed for papers with up to six authors; for
papers with more than six authors, the first six only should be
listed, followed by et al. Abbreviations for titles of medical
periodicals should conform to those used in the latest edition of
Index Medicus. The first and last page numbers for each reference
should be provided. Abstracts and letters must be identified as
such. Papers in press may be included in the list of references.
Personal communications must be allocated a number and
included in the list of references in the usual way or simply
referred to in the text; the authors may choose which method to
use. In either case authors must obtain permission from the
individual concerned to quote his/her unpublished work.
Cho JC, Kim MW, Lee DH, Kim SJ. (1997). Response of bacterial
communities to changes in composition of extracellular organic
carbon from phytoplankton in Daechung reservoir (Korea). Arch
Journal article, e-pub ahead of print:
Eng-Kiat L, Bowles DJ. A class of plant glycosyltransferases
involved in cellular homeostasis. EMBO J 2004; e-pub ahead of
print 8 July 2004, doi: 10.1038/sj.emboj.7600295.
Journal article, in press:
Lim E-K, Ashford DA, Hou B, Jackson RG, Bowles DJ. (2004).
Arabidopsis glycosyltransferases as biocatalysts in fermentation
for regioselective synthesis of diverse quercetin glucosides.
Biotech Bioeng (in press).
Sambrook J, Fritsch E, Maniatis T. (1989). Molecular Cloning: a
Laboratory Manual. Cold Spring Harbor Press: New York.
Chapter in book:
Zinder, SH. (1998). Methanogens. In: Burlage, RS (ed). Techniques
in Microbial Ecology. Oxford University Press: Oxford, pp 113–
Tables should only be used to present essential data; they
should not duplicate what is written in the text. It is imperative
that any tables used are editable, ideally presented in Excel. Each
must be uploaded as a separate workbook with a title or caption
and be clearly labelled, sequentially. Please make sure each table is
cited within the text and in the correct order, e.g. (Table 3).
Please save the files with extensions .xls / .xlsx / .ods / or .doc or
.docx. Please ensure that you provide a 'flat' file, with single values
in each cell with no macros or links to other workbooks or
worksheets and no calculations or functions.
Figures and images should be labelled sequentially and
cited in the text. Figures should not be embedded within the text
but rather uploaded as separate files. Detailed guidelines for
submitting artwork can be found by downloading our
Guidelines. The use of three-dimensional histograms is strongly
discouraged when the addition of the third dimension gives no
Detailed guidelines for submitting artwork
can be found by downloading the guidelines PDF. Using the
guidelines, please submit production quality artwork with your
initial online submission. If you have followed the guidelines, we
will not require the artwork to be resubmitted following the peerreview
process, if your paper is accepted for publication.
Colour on the web:
Authors who wish their articles to have FREE
colour figures on the web (only available in the HTML (full text)
version of manuscripts) must supply separate files in the
following format. These files should be submitted as
supplementary information and authors are asked to mention they
would like colour figures on the web in their submission letter.
Reuse of Display Items:
See the Editorial Policy section for
information on using previously published tables or figures.
Standard abbreviations: Because the majority of readers will have
experience in microbial ecology, the journal will accept papers
which use certain standard abbreviations, without definition in the
summary or in the text. Non-standard abbreviations should be
defined in full at their first usage in the Summary and again at the
first usage in the text, in the conventional manner. If a term is used
1-4 times in the text, it should be defined in full throughout the
text and not abbreviated.
Supplementary information (SI) is
peer-reviewed material directly relevant to the conclusion of an
article that cannot be included in the printed version owing to
space or format constraints. The article must be complete and selfexplanatory
without the SI, which is posted on the journal's
website and linked to the article. SI may consist of data files,
graphics, movies or extensive tables. Please see our Artwork
Guidelines for information on accepted file types.
Authors should submit supplementary information files in the
FINAL format as they are not edited, typeset or changed, and will
appear online exactly as submitted. When submitting SI, authors
are required to:
Include a text summary (no more than 50 words) to describe
the contents of each file.
Identify the types of files (file formats) submitted.
Include the text “Supplementary information is available at
(journal name)’s website” at the end of the article and before