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Submissions checklist

Cover letter

Cover letters are required for all Biochemical Journal submissions except Commentaries. The cover letter should highlight the findings of your study, the advance it brings and its relevance to the field. If your cover letter includes reviewer suggestions and exclusions, these must also be added to the appropriate section when prompted in the submission system. If you would like to request the attention of a particular Associate Editor from the Editorial Board to handle your paper, please express this in the cover letter.


The title should reflect the content of the paper and must not exceed 20 words in length. Please do consider the wording of your title to ensure maximum impact.


Abstracts must not exceed 250 words. Please ensure that there are no references included in the abstract. The Biochemical Journal does not currently consider graphical abstracts.


During the submission process you will be asked to provide a subject area and keywords that best represent your submission. Please select these carefully, as they will help to improve the discoverability of your paper should your paper be accepted for publication.

Author list

Please ensure that the authorship is complete and correct, and that author names are listed exactly as you would like them to appear on the published paper. The Journal follows ICMJE’s recommendations on authorship, and more information on authorship criteria can be found in our Editorial Policy.

As of 1 July 2022, the Biochemical Journal mandates that the Corresponding Author must have an institutional email address. If the author is unable to provide an institutional email address, the corresponding author’s institution must provide a letter (on letterheaded paper) that includes the following:

  • The full title of the paper
  • The full author list
  • The date of submission
  • Confirmation of where the work was performed
  • Confirmation of when the work was completed
  • Confirmation of the corresponding author’s employment at their affiliated institution 
  • Contact details of the corresponding author
  • Contact details, signature and job title of the person who wrote the letter (This letter must be completed and signed by a research officer or department head, not an author of the paper)

If the Corresponding Author is unable to provide an institutional email address or letter, please state the reason in the cover letter accompanying your submission.

As a general rule, extensive changes to the authorship for an article are not permitted. During submission of the original and revised versions of the paper, the corresponding author takes responsibility that all persons listed on the paper should be authors (and are eligible for authorship given the criteria linked to above). Extensive changes to the author list will be investigated on a case-by-case basis, and if it cannot be ascertained why an extensive change to the authorship has taken place, the paper may be rejected on that basis.


Corresponding authors

The corresponding author is responsible for all communication with the Journal. The corresponding author must also ensure that all authors are aware of, and agree to, the submission and (if accepted) publication of the paper. The corresponding author is required to provide an ORCiD during submission of a revised paper. The email address of the corresponding author will be published in the paper and the corresponding author must also act as the point of contact for queries regarding the paper after publication. The submission system only allows for one corresponding author to be added - if the paper has more than one corresponding author, please clearly indicate this in the manuscript file and cover letter.

Main text

The main text of the paper should include an Introduction, Results, Discussion and Methods section. The Methods section must include enough detail for the study to be replicated, including (as appropriate):

  • Details of ethical considerations and approval (see below)
  • Catalogue number and supplier of critical reagents and kits, for example, drugs, hormones, inhibitors, substrates, and purification kit
  • Antibody origin (company), catalogue number, and dilution used
  • NCBI (or other accessible database) reference number for DNA/RNA sequences used, and nucleotide range for fragment
  • UniProtKB (or other accessible database) reference number for protein sequences used, and residue range for fragment
  • Sequences of every oligonucleotide used for PCR, RT-qPCR, cloning, siRNA, miR-RNA, mimics, etc. with 5′-3′ orientation
  • Origin and catalogue number of cell lines used
  • Detail on culture conditions such as media, serum, and supplements for every cell line used and specific cell reagents, such as for gene transfer experiments and siRNA
  • Number of cells seeded in wells or Petri dish for cellular assays, incubation time before treatment, drug concentration used, time of harvest after treatment
  • Web address of databases with details on the parameters used to perform specific searches
  • Number of independent repetitions, statistical tests used, including for multiple comparison


Ethics statement (research papers)

For experiments with animals, please ensure that in your paper you state where the ethics approval has been sought/obtained from, the site where the animal work has taken place and the approval number obtained from the appropriate institutional review board.

Please also specify the details of any anaesthetics used, and how the animals used in the study were euthanised.

Please note that we do not consider research in which chloral hydrate has been used as an anaesthetic in animal experiments. Full details are available in our Editorial Policy.

Papers describing any experimental work with humans should include a statement confirming that the research has been carried out in accordance with the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki*, and that all subjects provided written informed consent. (*recommended requirement but it is sufficient to have institutional review board approval)

Data Availability Statement (research papers)

Upon submission, authors agree to make any materials, data, code, and associated protocols available upon request.

All research papers submitted to The Biochemical Journal must include a Data Availability Statement within the main manuscript (at the end of the main text) and within the submission system. For The  Biochemical Journal and all the Biochemical Society’s research journals, data deposition is mandatory for certain datasets and strongly encouraged for the rest. For more information, please see our full Data Policy.

To support our authors and to encourage the transparency and reproducibility of supporting data, Portland Press has partnered with Figshare to provide journal-specific data repositories where datasets can be published free of charge when linked to an article published in one of our participating research journals. The Portal is available here, please see our Data Policy for more information.


Figures may be embedded into the main text or provided as separate files. Please ensure all Figures have a title and legend. All Figures must be referred to in the main text. Figures must be provided at high resolution and the formatting of the labels should be consistent throughout the Figures. 

Images should not be enhanced or manipulated. Figures assembled from multiple images must be clearly indicated by white or black lines between each image.

For any paper that includes Western blots, the outer edges of the membranes should be visible and the blots should include the molecular mass markers. Fully uncropped and unedited versions of the blots may be requested by the Editorial Office, as required.

For more information on preparing your Figures, please see our Figure Preparation guide and full Data Policy.


All Tables should include a title and (where appropriate) a legend. References included in Tables must follow the Vancouver style (see section below).

Supplementary Files

All Supplementary Figures and Tables must include a title and (as appropriate) a legend. Supplementary Figures and Tables should be presented in a separate file from the main manuscript. Supplementary files should not include any methods - all methods must be included in the main article file.

Author contributions

You will be required to assign a CRediT contributor role to each author of the study. This will be published as part of the paper should your paper be accepted for publication. Please ensure the contribution of each author is fully and accurately reflected.


Please include a separate section providing details of any funding you received, including funding body/organisation and grant number where appropriate. If you did not receive specific funding, then please state this. Funding details must also be included in the submission system.

Acknowledgements (optional)

The acknowledgements should note assistance from contributors that do not meet the criteria for authorship. 


Please use the Vancouver style for all references. Please format your reference list to include the relevant DOI (digital object identifier) wherever possible. All references must be numbered consecutively within the text and listed in numerical order in the reference list. Where a reference includes more than six authors, please list the first six names followed by ‘et al’. 


  1. Walker, N., Manwaring, Z., Rowe, O., Rodriguez, J., Glaister, K., Raanan, D, et al. (2023) Emergent reference pathways and citation explorations. Port Pubs. 67, 1-3 10.1042/PPL_12345678


Preprints should be cited using their DOI. The format should be: Author(s). (Year) Title. bioRxiv (or other preprint server name). DOI, posted date. For more information, please see our full policy on preprints.  


Revised Papers

Please ensure all files are uploaded with your revised paper, including any Figures, Tables or Supplementary files. These will not be brought forward with the revised submission automatically.

Response to reviewers (revised papers)

For revised papers, you will be required to provide a response to the comments made by the Associate Editor, Reviewers and Editorial Office. Please ensure these are included within a single file and that every comment is responded to and/or addressed in the article file as appropriate.

Tracked changes version (revised papers)

Please provide a tracked changes version of your revised paper (a version with the changes highlighted) as a separate file from the main article.

Changes to authorship

If there are changes to the authorship of the paper during the revision, an Authorship Change form must be completed. Please include your fully completed form with your revised submission. All changes are subject to moderation by the Editorial Office. More information on changes to authorship can be found on our Editorial Policy page.


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