Guide for Authors

All journal information and instructions compiled in one document (PDF) in just one mouse-click Author information pack

• Forms
• Types of article
• Contact details for submission
• Page charges
• Ethics in publishing
• Human and animal rights
• Conflict of interest
• Submission declaration and verification
• Authorship
• Changes to authorship
• Clinical trial results
• Reporting clinical trials
• Copyright
• Role of the funding source
• Funding body agreements and policies
• Green open access
• Language (usage and editing services)
• Informed consent and patient details
• Submission
• Submit your article
• Referees
• Additional information
• Double-blind review
• Use of word processing software
• Article structure
• Essential title page information
• Abstract
• Keywords
• Abbreviations
• Acknowledgments
• Units
• Numbers
• Names of drugs, devices and other products
• Gene nomenclature
• Statistical requirements
• Database linking
• Math formulae
• Conflicts of interest statement
• Funding/support statement
• Artwork
• Illustration services
• Tables
• References
• Video data
• Supplementary data
• Data deposit and linking
• Submission checklist
• Additional information
• Use of the Digital Object Identifier
• Proofs
• Reprints

The Hong Kong Journal of Nephrology (HKJN) is the official peer-reviewed journal of the Hong Kong Society of Nephrology. The missions of the Journal are to:
• promote clinical and scientific research in the field of nephrology;
• serve as a communication channel among nephrologists in Hong Kong, China and the Asia-Pacific region;
• act as a source of teaching material in the field of nephrology for nephrologists and renal nurses;
• record historical milestones in the field of nephrology in Hong Kong;
• promote the activities of the Hong Kong Society of Nephrology;
• provide a platform for opinions on major issues for nephrologists in Hong Kong and Southeast Asia.

The HKJN, which is published twice a year in April and October, publishes both research papers as well as educational material, including:
• Original Articles: clinical or laboratory studies in nephrology, including, but not limited to, the pathogenesis and treatment of kidney disease, hypertension, acid-base and electrolyte disorders, dialysis, urological diseases, and kidney transplantation.
• Short Communications: research papers that describe preliminary but novel research findings that are not sufficiently substantial for an Original Article.
• Case Reports: interesting cases that highlight uncommon diseases, novel presentations, or cutting-edge therapeutic strategies.
• Case Vignettes: simple cases with interesting clinical images or laboratory results that are of educational value.

The HKJN also publishes invited review articles, editorials, and regular reports from the Hong Kong Renal Registry.

The journal is indexed in CAB Abstracts, EMBASE, ScienceDirect, Scopus and SIIC Data Bases.

The Editorial Board requires authors to be in compliance with the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals (URMs), which are compiled by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE); current URMs are available at

This Guide for Authors is revised periodically by the Editors as needed. Authors should visit for the latest version of this guide. Any manuscript not prepared according to these instructions will be returned immediately to the author(s) without review.


Authorship and Conflicts of Interest Statement
Copyright Transfer Agreement

Types of article

Editorials are invited articles or comments concerning a specific paper in the Journal or a topical issue in the field. Although editorials are normally invited or written by an Editor, unsolicited editorials may be submitted.
Typical length: 1500–2000 words, 20–40 references.

Review articles
These should aim to provide the reader with a balanced overview of an important and topical subject related to nephrology, and should be systematic, critical assessments of literature and data sources, emphasizing factors such as cause, diagnosis, prognosis, therapy, or prevention. They should cover aspects of a topic in which scientific consensus exists as well as aspects that remain controversial and are the subject of ongoing scientific research. All articles and data sources reviewed should include information about the specific type of study or analysis, population, intervention, exposure, and tests or outcomes. All articles or data sources should be selected systematically for inclusion in the review and critically evaluated.
Typical length: 2000–4000 words, 50–100 references.

Brief reviews
These are invited articles containing short and focused discussions of specific topics. Although invited, they are also formally peer-reviewed like all other HKJN papers.
Typical length: 500–1000 words, not more than 10 references, and 1 table or 1 figure.

Original articles
These may be randomized trials, intervention studies, studies of screening and diagnostic tests, laboratory and animal studies, cohort studies, cost-effectiveness analyses, case-control studies, and surveys with high response rates, which represent new and significant contributions to the field. Dissertations for the purpose of exit examinations for higher physician training in nephrology (within Hong Kong) are encouraged to be written up and submitted for consideration.
Section headings should be: Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, Conflicts of Interest, Funding/Support Statement, Acknowledgments (if any), References.
The Introduction should provide a brief background to the subject of the paper, explain the importance of the study, and state a precise study question or purpose.
The Methods section should describe the study design and methods (including the study setting and dates, patient samples or animal specimens used, with inclusion and exclusion criteria, the laboratory methods followed, or data sources and how these were selected for the study, the essential features of any interventions, the main outcome measures), and state the statistical procedures employed in the research.
The Results section should comprise the study results presented in a logical sequence, supplemented with tables and/or figures. Take care that the text does not repeat data that are presented in the tables and/or figures.
The Discussion section should be used to emphasize the new and important aspects of the study, placing the results in context with published literature, the implications of the findings, and the conclusions that follow from the study results.
Typical length: 2000–3000 words, 40–80 references.

Case reports
These are short discussions of a case or case series with unique features not previously described that make an important teaching point or scientific observation. Interesting cases presented at interhospital meetings (within Hong Kong) are encouraged to be written up and submitted for consideration.
Section headings should be: Abstract, Introduction, Case Report, Discussion, Conflicts of Interest, Funding/Support Statement, Acknowledgments (if any), References.
The Introduction should describe the purpose of the report, the significance of the disease and its specificity, and briefly review the relevant literature.
The Case Report should include the general data of the case, medical history, family history, chief complaint, present illness, clinical manifestation, methods of diagnosis and treatment, and outcome.
The Discussion should compare, analyze and discuss the similarities and differences between the reported case and similar previously reported cases. The importance or specificity of the case should be restated when discussing the differential diagnoses. Suggest the prognosis of the disease and possibility of prevention.
Typical length: 800–1200 words, 15–30 references.

Short communications
Publication under this category is based on the collective decision of the Editors and reviewers. These papers are usually manuscripts originally submitted as original articles, but found to present preliminary or limited results of original research only.
Section headings should be: Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, Conflicts of Interest, Funding/Support Statement, Acknowledgments (if any), References.
Typical length: 1000–1500 words, 20–40 references.

Technical notes
Technical notes are devoted to technical aspects of clinical or experimental practice that are not fully investigated, verified or perfected, but which may be of widespread application. Technical note submissions will go through a short review process.
Typical length: 1000–1500 words, 20–40 references.

Hong Kong Renal Registry
These invited articles provide updates on information obtained from the Hong Kong Renal Registry. Data pooled from all the dialysis centers are analyzed.

Nursing section
This section is devoted to promote sharing of information among renal nurses. In general, articles describe specific techniques or procedures, modifications of techniques, or nursing practices.
Typical length: 2000–2500 words, 30–60 references.

Clinical vignettes
These are interesting clinical 'snapshots' of cases presented in the form of a descriptive paragraph and figures as appropriate.
Typical length: 200–400 words, 5–10 references.

Letters to the Editor
These include brief constructive comments concerning previously published articles in the HKJN, interesting cases that do not meet the requirement of being truly exceptional, short letters on significant preliminary clinical data and other communications of general interest.
Letters should have a title and include appropriate references, and include the corresponding author’s e-mail address. Letters are edited, sometimes extensively, to sharpen their focus. They may be sent for peer review at the discretion of the Editors.
Typical length: 300–600 words, 5 references; 1 table and/or 1 figure may be included.

Nephrology forum
This section provides a platform for in-depth discussion by a group of nephrologists on a specific topic, usually preceded by a case presentation.

Book reviews
These are written by invited reviewers of newly published books in the field of nephrology.

Contact details for submission

Manuscripts (meaning all submission items, including all text, tables, artwork, cover letter, conflicts of interest disclosures, and any other required documents/material) must be submitted online to the HKJN through the Elsevier Editorial System (EES) at This site will guide authors stepwise through the submission process. If assistance is required, please refer to the tutorials and/or customer support that are available on the website.

Page charges

Authors will be charged US$100 (HK$780) per illustration, figure or table that is in color.

Ethics in publishing

For information on Ethics in publishing and Ethical guidelines for journal publication see and

Human and animal rights

If the work involves the use of animal or human subjects, the author should ensure that the work described has been carried out in accordance with The Code of Ethics of the World Medical Association (Declaration of Helsinki) for experiments involving humans; EU Directive 2010/63/EU for animal experiments; Uniform Requirements for manuscripts submitted to Biomedical journals Authors should include a statement in the manuscript that informed consent was obtained for experimentation with human subjects. The privacy rights of human subjects must always be observed.

Conflict of interest

All authors must disclose any financial and personal relationships with other people or organizations that could inappropriately influence (bias) their work. Examples of potential conflicts of interest include employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, paid expert testimony, patent applications/registrations, and grants or other funding. See also Further information and an example of a Conflict of Interest form can be found at:

Submission declaration and verification

Submission of an article implies that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis or as an electronic preprint, see, that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere in the same form, in English or in any other language, including electronically without the written consent of the copyright-holder. To verify originality, your article may be checked by the originality detection service CrossCheck


All authors should have made substantial contributions to all of the following: (1) the conception and design of the study, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data, (2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content, (3) final approval of the version to be submitted.

Changes to authorship

This policy concerns the addition, deletion, or rearrangement of author names in the authorship of accepted manuscripts:
Before the accepted manuscript is published in an online issue: Requests to add or remove an author, or to rearrange the author names, must be sent to the Journal Manager from the corresponding author of the accepted manuscript and must include: (a) the reason the name should be added or removed, or the author names rearranged and (b) written confirmation (e-mail, fax, letter) from all authors that they agree with the addition, removal or rearrangement. In the case of addition or removal of authors, this includes confirmation from the author being added or removed. Requests that are not sent by the corresponding author will be forwarded by the Journal Manager to the corresponding author, who must follow the procedure as described above. Note that: (1) Journal Managers will inform the Journal Editors of any such requests and (2) publication of the accepted manuscript in an online issue is suspended until authorship has been agreed.
After the accepted manuscript is published in an online issue: Any requests to add, delete, or rearrange author names in an article published in an online issue will follow the same policies as noted above and result in a corrigendum.

Clinical trial results

In line with the position of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, the journal will not consider results posted in the same clinical trials registry in which primary registration resides to be prior publication if the results posted are presented in the form of a brief structured (less than 500 words) abstract or table. However, divulging results in other circumstances (e.g., investors' meetings) is discouraged and may jeopardise consideration of the manuscript. Authors should fully disclose all posting in registries of results of the same or closely related work.

Reporting clinical trials

Randomized controlled trials should be presented according to the CONSORT guidelines. At manuscript submission, authors must provide the CONSORT checklist accompanied by a flow diagram that illustrates the progress of patients through the trial, including recruitment, enrollment, randomization, withdrawal and completion, and a detailed description of the randomization procedure. The CONSORT checklist and template flow diagram can be found on

Registration of clinical trials
Registration in a public trials registry is a condition for publication of clinical trials in this journal in accordance with International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE, recommendations. Trials must register at or before the onset of patient enrolment. The clinical trial registration number should be included at the end of the abstract of the article. A clinical trial is defined as any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects of health outcomes. Health-related interventions include any intervention used to modify a biomedical or health-related outcome (for example drugs, surgical procedures, devices, behavioural treatments, dietary interventions, and process-of-care changes). Health outcomes include any biomedical or health-related measures obtained in patients or participants, including pharmacokinetic measures and adverse events. Purely observational studies (those in which the assignment of the medical intervention is not at the discretion of the investigator) will not require registration.


The HKJN is the official peer-reviewed publication of the Hong Kong Society of Nephrology Ltd. Manuscripts published in the HKJN become the permanent property of the Hong Kong Society of Nephrology Ltd. All articles published in the Journal are protected by copyright, which covers the exclusive rights to reproduce and distribute the article, as well as translation rights. No HKJN article, in part or whole, may be reproduced, stored in any retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, by photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission from the Hong Kong Society of Nephrology Ltd.

Role of the funding source

You are requested to identify who provided financial support for the conduct of the research and/or preparation of the article and to briefly describe the role of the sponsor(s), if any, in study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication. If the funding source(s) had no such involvement then this should be stated.

Funding body agreements and policies

Elsevier has established agreements and developed policies to allow authors whose articles appear in journals published by Elsevier, to comply with potential manuscript archiving requirements as specified as conditions of their grant awards. To learn more about existing agreements and policies please visit

Green open access

Authors can share their research in a variety of different ways and Elsevier has a number of green open access options available. We recommend authors see our green open access page for further information ( Authors can also self-archive their manuscripts immediately and enable public access from their institution's repository after an embargo period. This is the version that has been accepted for publication and which typically includes author-incorporated changes suggested during submission, peer review and in editor-author communications. Embargo period: For subscription articles, an appropriate amount of time is needed for journals to deliver value to subscribing customers before an article becomes freely available to the public. This is the embargo period and begins from the publication date of the issue your article appears in.

This journal has an embargo period of 12 months.

Language (usage and editing services)

Please write your text in good English (using American spelling). Authors who feel their English language manuscript may require editing to eliminate possible grammatical or spelling errors and to conform to correct scientific English may wish to use the English Language Editing service available from Elsevier's WebShop ( or visit our customer support site ( for more information.

Informed consent and patient details

Studies on patients or volunteers require ethics committee approval and informed consent, which should be documented in the paper. Appropriate consents, permissions and releases must be obtained where an author wishes to include case details or other personal information or images of patients and any other individuals in an Elsevier publication. Written consents must be retained by the author and copies of the consents or evidence that such consents have been obtained must be provided to Elsevier on request. For more information, please review the Elsevier Policy on the Use of Images or Personal Information of Patients or other Individuals, Unless you have written permission from the patient (or, where applicable, the next of kin), the personal details of any patient included in any part of the article and in any supplementary materials (including all illustrations and videos) must be removed before submission.


Submission to this journal proceeds totally online and you will be guided stepwise through the creation and uploading of your files. The system automatically converts source files to a single PDF file of the article, which is used in the peer-review process. Please note that even though manuscript source files are converted to PDF files at submission for the review process, these source files are needed for further processing after acceptance. All correspondence, including notification of the Editor's decision and requests for revision, takes place by e-mail removing the need for a paper trail.

Submit your article

Please submit your article via


Please submit the names and institutional e-mail addresses of several potential referees. For more details, visit our Support site. Note that the editor retains the sole right to decide whether or not the suggested reviewers are used.

Additional information

The following documents must be included in your submission. Items (1), (2) and (3) are mandatory. Items (4), (5), (6) and (7) are required only if they are applicable to your manuscript.

(1) Cover Letter. This must include the following information:
• title of the manuscript
• names (spelled out in full) of all the authors
• corresponding author details (name, e-mail, mailing address, telephone and fax numbers)
• a statement that the material contained in the manuscript has not been previously published and is not being concurrently submitted elsewhere
• persons who do not fulfill the requirements to be listed as authors but who nevertheless contributed to the manuscript (such as those who provided writing assistance, for example) should be disclosed
• the signature of the corresponding author

(2) Authorship & Conflicts of Interest Statement. Each author's contribution to the manuscript should be listed. Any and all potential and actual conflicts of interest should also be listed. Please use the HKJN Authorship & Conflicts of Interest Statement form. Your signature and those of ALL your coauthors must be included.

(3) Copyright Transfer Agreement. In the event that your manuscript is accepted for publication in the HKJN, you are required to transfer all copyright ownership in and relating to the work to the Hong Kong Society of Nephrology. Please use the HKJN Copyright Transfer Agreement. Your signature and those of ALL your coauthors must be included. However, the Agreement will be null and void if your manuscript is not published in the HKJN.

(4) Ethics Statement. Articles covering the use of human or animal samples in research, or human or animal experiments must be accompanied by a letter of approval from the relevant review committee or authorities.

(5) Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) flow chart for randomized controlled trials submitted for publication.

(6) Signed Statement of Informed Consent. Articles where human subjects can be identified in descriptions, photographs or pedigrees must be accompanied by a signed statement of informed consent to publish (in print and online) the descriptions, photographs and pedigrees from each subject who can be identified.

(7) Copyright Permission. If you have reproduced or adapted material from other copyrighted sources, the letter(s) of permission from the copyright holder(s) to reproduce or adapt the copyrighted sources must be supplied. Otherwise, such material must be removed from your manuscript.

Double-blind review

This journal uses double-blind review, which means that both the reviewer and author name(s) are not allowed to be revealed to one another for a manuscript under review. The identities of the authors are concealed from the reviewers, and vice versa. For more information please refer to To facilitate this, please include the following separately:
Title page (with author details): This should include the title, authors' names and affiliations, and a complete address for the corresponding author including telephone and e-mail address.
Blinded manuscript (no author details): The main body of the paper (including the references, figures, tables and any Acknowledgements) should not include any identifying information, such as the authors' names or affiliations.

Use of word processing software

It is important that the file be saved in the native format of the word processor used. The text should be in single-column format. Keep the layout of the text as simple as possible. Most formatting codes will be removed and replaced on processing the article. In particular, do not use the word processor's options to justify text or to hyphenate words. However, do use bold face, italics, subscripts, superscripts etc. When preparing tables, if you are using a table grid, use only one grid for each individual table and not a grid for each row. If no grid is used, use tabs, not spaces, to align columns. The electronic text should be prepared in a way very similar to that of conventional manuscripts (see also the Guide to Publishing with Elsevier: Note that source files of figures, tables and text graphics will be required whether or not you embed your figures in the text. See also the section on Electronic artwork.
To avoid unnecessary errors you are strongly advised to use the 'spell-check' and 'grammar-check' functions of your word processor.

Article structure

Subdivision - unnumbered sections
Divide your article into clearly defined sections. Each subsection is given a brief heading. Each heading should appear on its own separate line. Subsections should be used as much as possible when cross-referencing text: refer to the subsection by heading as opposed to simply 'the text'.

State the objectives of the work and provide an adequate background, avoiding a detailed literature survey or a summary of the results.

Provide sufficient detail to allow the work to be reproduced. Methods already published should be indicated by a reference: only relevant modifications should be described.

Results should be clear and concise.

This should explore the significance of the results of the work, not repeat them. Avoid extensive citations and discussion of published literature.

The main conclusions of the study may be presented in a short Conclusion section, which may stand alone or form a subsection of the Discussion section.

If there is more than one appendix, they should be identified as A, B, etc. Formulae and equations in appendices should be given separate numbering: Eq. (A.1), Eq. (A.2), etc.; in a subsequent appendix, Eq. (B.1) and so on. Similarly for tables and figures: Table A.1; Fig. A.1, etc.

Essential title page information

The title page should contain the following information (in order, from the top to bottom of the page):
Article type.
Article title. Concise and informative. Titles are often used in information-retrieval systems. Avoid abbreviations and formulae where possible.
Author names and affiliations. Spell out the names of authors in full, with the family name last. Where the family name may be ambiguous (e.g., a double name), please indicate this clearly. Present the authors' affiliation addresses (where the actual work was done) below the names (only 1 affiliation per author is permitted). Indicate all affiliations with a lower-case superscript letter immediately after the author's name and in front of the appropriate affiliation. Provide the e-mail address, if available, of each author.
Corresponding author. Clearly indicate who will handle correspondence at all stages of refereeing and publication, also post-publication. Ensure that phone numbers (with country and area code) are provided in addition to the e-mail address and the complete postal address. Contact details must be kept up to date by the corresponding author.
Present/permanent address. If an author has moved since the work described in the article was done, or was visiting at the time, a 'Present address' (or 'Permanent address') may be indicated as a footnote to that author's name. The address at which the author actually did the work must be retained as the main, affiliation address. Superscript Arabic numerals are used for such footnotes.
Short running title. This should not exceed 50 characters.


A concise and factual abstract is required for the following article categories: Review Article, Brief Review, Original Article, Case Report, Short Communication, Technical Note, Hong Kong Renal Registry, and Nursing Section. Abstracts should be no more than 300 words in length. An abstract is often presented separately from the article, so it must be able to stand alone. For this reason, References should be avoided, but if essential, then cite the author(s) and year(s). Also, non-standard or uncommon abbreviations should be avoided, but if essential they must be defined at their first mention in the abstract itself.
Abstracts for Original Articles should be structured, with the section headings: Background/Purpose, Methods, Results, Conclusion, and provide, respectively, the context or background for the research and should state its purpose, basic procedures (selection of study subjects or laboratory animals, observational and analytical methods), main findings (giving specific effect sizes and their statistical significance, if possible), and principal conclusions. It should emphasize new and important aspects of the study or observations.
Abstracts for Case Reports are unstructured in one single paragraph, but should include the significance and purpose of the case presentation, the diagnostic methods of the case, the key data, and brief comments and suggestions with regard to the case. Abstracts for Review Articles, Brief Reviews, Short Communications, Technical Notes, Hong Kong Renal Registry and Nursing Section should also be unstructured.
A Chinese version of the abstract (in Traditional Chinese characters) should follow the English abstract. For authors who do not know Chinese, the translation will be taken care of by the Editorial office.
No abstract is required for the following article categories: Editorial, Clinical Vignette, Letter to the Editor, Nephrology Forum, and Book Review.


Immediately after the abstract, provide a maximum of 5 keywords in alphabetical order, using American spelling and avoiding general and plural terms and multiple concepts (avoid, for example, 'and', 'of'). Keywords should not simply be taken from the manuscript title but should be representative of the content of the article and be characteristic of the terminology used within the particular field of the study. They should be taken from Index Medicus (Medical Subject Headings, MeSH) or be composed by analogy on the same principle. Be sparing with abbreviations: only abbreviations firmly established in the field may be eligible. These keywords will be used for indexing purposes.


Where a term/definition will be continually referred to, it must be written in full when it first appears in the text, followed by the subsequent abbreviation in parentheses (even if it was previously defined in the abstract). Thereafter, the abbreviation may be used. An abbreviation should not be first defined in any section heading; if an abbreviation has previously been defined in the text, then the abbreviation may be used in a subsequent section heading. Restrict the number of abbreviations to those that are absolutely necessary and ensure consistency of abbreviations throughout the article. Ensure that an abbreviation so defined does actually appear later in the text (excluding in figures/tables), otherwise, it should be deleted.


Collate acknowledgements in a separate section at the end of the article before the references and do not, therefore, include them on the title page, as a footnote to the title or otherwise. List here those individuals who provided help during the research (e.g., providing language help, writing assistance or proof reading the article, etc.).


Follow internationally accepted rules and conventions: use the international system of units (SI). If other units are mentioned, please give their equivalent in SI. Blood pressure values are to be reported in mmHg. Use the metric system for the expression of length, area, mass, and volume. Temperatures are to be given in degrees Celsius.


Numbers that begin a sentence or those that are less than 10 should be spelled out using letters. Centuries and decades should be spelled out, e.g., the Eighties or nineteenth century. Laboratory parameters, time, temperature, length, area, mass, and volume should be expressed using digits.

Names of drugs, devices and other products

Use the Recommended International Non-proprietary Name (rINN) for medicinal substances, unless the specific trade name of a drug is directly relevant to the discussion. Generic drug names should appear in lowercase letters in the text. If a specific proprietary drug needs to be identified, the brand name may appear only once in the manuscript in parentheses following the generic name the first time the drug is mentioned in the text. For devices and other products, the specific brand or trade name, the manufacturer and their location (city, state, country) should be provided the first time the device or product is mentioned in the text, for example, ''…IBM SPSS Statistics 21.0 was used (IBM Corp., Armonk, NY, USA)''. Thereafter, the generic term (if appropriate) should be used.

Gene nomenclature

Current standard international nomenclature for genes should be adhered to. For human genes, use genetic notation and symbols approved by the HUGO Gene Nomenclature Committee ( You may also refer to the resources available on PubMed at The Human Genome Variation Society has a useful site that provides guidance in naming mutations at In your manuscript, genes should be typed in italic font and include the accession number.

Statistical requirements

Statistical analysis is essential for all research papers except Case Reports. Use correct nomenclature for statistical methods (e.g., two sample t test, not unpaired t test). Descriptive statistics should follow the scales used in data description. Inferential statistics are important for interpreting results and should be described in detail. All p values should be presented to the third decimal place for accuracy. The smallest p value that should be expressed is p < 0.001 since additional zeros do not convey useful information; the largest p value that should be expressed is p > 0.99.

Database linking

Elsevier encourages authors to connect articles with external databases, giving their readers one-click access to relevant databases that help to build a better understanding of the described research. Please refer to relevant database identifiers using the following format in your article: Database: xxxx (e.g., TAIR: AT1G01020; CCDC: 734053; PDB: 1XFN). See for more information and a full list of supported databases.

Math formulae

Present simple formulae in the line of normal text where possible and use the solidus (/) instead of a horizontal line for small fractional terms, e.g., X/Y. In principle, variables are to be presented in italics. Powers of e are often more conveniently denoted by exp. Number consecutively any equations that have to be displayed separately from the text (if referred to explicitly in the text).

Conflicts of interest statement

Since it is difficult to distinguish between an actual conflict of interest and a perceived conflict of interest, the HKJN requires authors to disclose all and any potential conflicts of interest and let readers judge for themselves. Therefore, please ensure that you provide information about any potential financial and non-financial conflicts of interest in a concise paragraph after the main text. If none, then state, ''The author(s) have no conflicts of interest relevant to this article.''

Funding/support statement

All financial and material support for the research, work, writing and editorial assistance from internal or external agencies, including commercial companies, should be clearly and completely identified in a funding/support statement.


General guidelines
The number of illustrations should be restricted to the minimum necessary to support the textual material. Ensure that each illustration is numbered consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text and has a caption. Supply captions separately, not attached to the figure. A caption should comprise a brief title (not on the figure itself) and a description of the illustration. Keep text in the illustrations themselves to a minimum but explain all symbols and abbreviations used at the end of the caption. Items requiring explanatory footnotes should be denoted using superscripted lowercase letters (a, b, c, etc.), with the footnotes in alphabetical order at the end of the caption. Asterisks (*, **) are used only to indicate the probability level of tests of significance. Abbreviations used must be defined and placed after the footnotes in alphabetical order.

Privacy of research participants
Unless you have written permission from the patient (or, where applicable, the next of kin), identifying information (e.g., names, initials, hospital numbers, date of birth) of the patient must be removed. Informed consent should be obtained if there is any doubt that anonymity can be maintained. For example, masking the eye region in photographs of patients is inadequate protection of anonymity. If identifying characteristics are de-identified, authors should provide assurance, and editors should so note, that such changes do not distort scientific meaning. For further information, see

Image manipulation
Whilst it is accepted that authors sometimes need to manipulate images for clarity, manipulation for purposes of deception or fraud will be seen as scientific ethical abuse and will be dealt with accordingly. For graphical images, this journal is applying the following policy: no specific feature within an image may be enhanced, obscured, moved, removed, or introduced. Adjustments of brightness, contrast, or color balance are acceptable if and as long as they do not obscure or eliminate any information present in the original. Nonlinear adjustments (e.g. changes to gamma settings) must be disclosed in the figure legend.

Electronic artwork
General points
• Make sure you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.
• Embed the used fonts if the application provides that option.
• Aim to use the following fonts in your illustrations: Arial, Courier, Times New Roman, Symbol, or use fonts that look similar.
• Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
• Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files.
• Provide captions to illustrations separately.
• Size the illustrations close to the desired dimensions of the printed version.
• Submit each illustration as a separate file.

A detailed guide on electronic artwork is available on our website:
You are urged to visit this site; some excerpts from the detailed information are given here.

If your electronic artwork is created in a Microsoft Office application (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) then please supply 'as is' in the native document format.
Regardless of the application used other than Microsoft Office, when your electronic artwork is finalized, please 'Save as' or convert the images to one of the following formats (note the resolution requirements for line drawings, halftones, and line/halftone combinations given below):
• EPS (or PDF): Vector drawings, embed all used fonts.
• TIFF (or JPEG): Color or grayscale photographs (halftones), keep to a minimum of 300 dpi.
• TIFF (or JPEG): Bitmapped (pure black & white pixels) line drawings, keep to a minimum of 1000 dpi.
• TIFF (or JPEG): Combinations bitmapped line/half-tone (color or grayscale), keep to a minimum of 500 dpi.
Please do not:
• Supply files that are optimized for screen use (e.g., GIF, BMP, PICT, WPG); these typically have a low number of pixels and limited set of colors;
• Supply files that are too low in resolution;
• Submit graphics that are disproportionately large for the content.

Color artwork
Please make sure that artwork files are in an acceptable format (TIFF (or JPEG), EPS (or PDF), or MS Office files) and with the correct resolution. If, together with your accepted article, you submit usable color figures then Elsevier will ensure, at no additional charge, that these figures will appear in color on the Web (e.g., ScienceDirect and other sites) regardless of whether or not these illustrations are reproduced in color in the printed version. For color reproduction in print, authors will be charged US$100 per illustration, figure or table that is in color. Please indicate your preference for color: in print or on the Web only. For further information on the preparation of electronic artwork, please see
Please note: Because of technical complications which can arise by converting color figures to 'gray scale' (for the printed version should you not opt for color in print), please submit in addition usable black and white versions of all the color illustrations.

Illustration services

Elsevier's WebShop ( offers Illustration Services to authors preparing to submit a manuscript but concerned about the quality of the images accompanying their article. Elsevier's expert illustrators can produce scientific, technical and medical-style images, as well as a full range of charts, tables and graphs. Image 'polishing' is also available, where our illustrators take your image(s) and improve them to a professional standard. Please visit the website to find out more.


Tables should have a concise table heading, be self-explanatory, and numbered consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text. Items requiring explanatory footnotes should be denoted using superscripted lowercase letters (a, b, c, etc.), with the footnotes arranged below the table body in alphabetical order. Asterisks (*, **) are used only to indicate the probability level of tests of significance. Abbreviations used in the table must be defined and placed after the footnotes in alphabetical order. Avoid vertical rules. If you include a block of data or table from another source, whether published or unpublished, you must acknowledge the original source and have permission from the copyright holder to use the material in your manuscript. Be sparing in the use of tables and ensure that the data presented in tables do not duplicate results described elsewhere in the article.


Citation in text
Please ensure that every reference cited in the text is also present in the reference list (and vice versa). Any references cited in the abstract must be given in full. Unpublished results and personal communications are not recommended in the reference list, but may be mentioned in the text. If these references are included in the reference list they should follow the standard reference style of the journal and should include a substitution of the publication date with either 'Unpublished results' or 'Personal communication'. Citation of a reference as 'in press' implies that the item has been accepted for publication.

Reference links
Increased discoverability of research and high quality peer review are ensured by online links to the sources cited. In order to allow us to create links to abstracting and indexing services, such as Scopus, CrossRef and PubMed, please ensure that data provided in the references are correct. Please note that incorrect surnames, journal/book titles, publication year and pagination may prevent link creation. When copying references, please be careful as they may already contain errors. Use of the DOI is encouraged.

Web references
As a minimum, the full URL should be given and the date when the reference was last accessed. Any further information, if known (DOI, author names, dates, reference to a source publication, etc.), should also be given. Web references can be listed separately (e.g., after the reference list) under a different heading if desired, or can be included in the reference list.

Personal communications and unpublished data
These sources cannot be included in the references list but may be described in the text. The author(s) must give the full name and highest academic degree of the person, the date of the communication, and indicate whether it was in oral or written (letter, fax, e-mail) form. A signed statement of permission should be included from each person identified as a source of information in a personal communication or as a source for unpublished data.

Reference to arXiv
As with unpublished results and personal communications, references to arXiv documents are not recommended in the reference list. Please make every effort to obtain the full reference of the published version of an arXiv document. If a reference to an arXiv document must be included in the references list it should follow the standard reference style of the journal and should include a substitution of the volume and page numbers with 'arXiv:YYMM.NNNN' or 'arXiv:arch-ive/YYMMNNN' for articles submitted to arXiv before April 2007.

References in a special issue
Please ensure that the words 'this issue' are added to any references in the list (and any citations in the text) to other articles in the same Special Issue.

Reference style
Text: Indicate references by (consecutive) superscript numbers in the order in which they appear in the text. The numerals are to be used outside periods and commas, and inside colons and semicolons. The actual authors can be referred to, but the reference number(s) must always be given.
List: Number the references in the list in the order in which they appear in the text. References should include, in order, author surnames and initials, article title, abbreviated journal name, year, volume and inclusive page numbers. The last names and initials of all the authors up to 6 should be included, but when authors number 7 or more, list the first 6 authors only followed by 'et al'.

Examples of the most common reference types are provided below. Please pay particular attention to the formatting, word capitalization, spacing and style.
Note shortened form for last page number. e.g., 51–9, and that for more than 6 authors the first 6 should be listed followed by 'et al.' For further details you are referred to 'Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts submitted to Biomedical Journals' (J Am Med Assoc 1997;277:927–34) (see also

References to journal publications:
1. Bisdas T, Pichlmaier M, Wilhelmi M, Bisdas S, Haverich A, Teebken O. Effects of the ABO-mismatch between donor and recipient of cryopreserved arterial homografts. Int Angiol 2011;30:247–55.
2. Kwong VWK, Leung CB, Szeto CC, Kwan BCH, Chow KM, Pang WF, et al. Oral paricalcitol for the treatment of secondary hyperparathyroidism in hemodialysis patients. Hong Kong J Nephrol 2014;16:7–11.

Reference to a journal supplement:
3. Kaplan NM. The endothelium as prognostic factor and therapeutic target: what criteria should we apply? J Cardiovasc Pharmacol 1998;32(Suppl 3):S78–80.

Reference to a journal article not in English but with English abstract:
4. Kawai H, Ishikawa T, Moroi J, Hanyu N, Sawada M, Kobayashi N, et al. Elderly patient with cerebellar malignant astrocytoma. No Shinkei Geka 2008;36:799–805. [In Japanese, English abstract]

Reference to a book with edition:
5. Bradley EL. Medical and surgical management. 2nd ed. Philadelphia: Saunders; 1982, p. 72–95.

Reference to a book with editors:
6. Letheridge S, Cannon CR, editors. Bilingual education: teaching English as a second language. New York: Praeger; 1980.

Reference to a book chapter in a book with editor and edition:
7. Greaves M, Culligan DJ. Blood and bone marrow. In: Underwood JCE, editor. General and systematic pathology. 4th ed. London: Churchill Livingstone; 2004, p. 615–72.

Reference to a book series with editors:
8. Wilson JG, Fraser FC, editors. Handbook of teratology, vols. 1–4. New York: Plenum Press; 1977–78.

Reference to a bulletin:
9. World Health Organization. World health report 2002: reducing risk, promoting healthy life. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization; 2002.

Reference to electronic publications:
10. Duchin JS. Can preparedness for biological terrorism save us from pertussis? Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med 2004;158:106–7. Available from: Accessed June 12, 2004.
11. Smeeth L, Iliffe S. Community screening for visual impairment in the elderly. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2002(2):CD001054. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD1001054.

Reference to items presented at a meeting but not yet published:
12. Greenspan A, Eerdekens M, Mahmoud R. Is there an increased rate of cerebrovascular events among dementia patients? Poster presented at: 24th Congress of the Collegium Internationale Neuro-Psychopharmacologicum (CINP); June 20–24, 2004; Paris, France.
13. Khuri FR, Lee JJ, Lippman SM. Isotretinoin effects on head and neck cancer recurrence and second primary tumors. In: Proceedings from the American Society of Clinical Oncology; May 31–June 3, 2003; Chicago, IL. Abstract 359.

Reference to an item presented at a meeting and published:
14. Cionni RJ. Color perception in patients with UV- or bluelight-filtering IOLs. In: Symposium on cataract, IOL, and refractive surgery. San Diego, CA: American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery; 2004. Abstract 337.

Reference to theses and dissertations:
15. Undeman C. Fully automatic segmentation of MRI brain images using probabilistic diffusion and a watershed scale–space approach [master's thesis]. Stockholm, Sweden: NADA, Royal Institute of Technology; 2001.
16. Ayers AJ. Retention of resin restorations by means of enamel etching and by pins [MSD thesis]. Indianapolis: Indiana University; 1971.

Reference to a website:
17. American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. Wisdom teeth. AAOMS Website. Published 2008. Accessed November 15, 2013.

Journal abbreviations source
Journal names should be abbreviated according to the List of Title Word Abbreviations:

Video data

Elsevier accepts video material and animation sequences to support and enhance your scientific research. Authors who have video or animation files that they wish to submit with their article are strongly encouraged to include links to these within the body of the article. This can be done in the same way as a figure or table by referring to the video or animation content and noting in the body text where it should be placed. All submitted files should be properly labeled so that they directly relate to the video file's content. In order to ensure that your video or animation material is directly usable, please provide the files in one of our recommended file formats with a preferred maximum size of 50 MB. Video and animation files supplied will be published online in the electronic version of your article in Elsevier Web products, including ScienceDirect: Please supply 'stills' with your files: you can choose any frame from the video or animation or make a separate image. These will be used instead of standard icons and will personalize the link to your video data. For more detailed instructions please visit our video instruction pages at Note: since video and animation cannot be embedded in the print version of the journal, please provide text for both the electronic and the print version for the portions of the article that refer to this content.

Supplementary data

Elsevier accepts electronic supplementary material to support and enhance your scientific research. Supplementary files offer the author additional possibilities to publish supporting applications, high-resolution images, background datasets, sound clips and more. Supplementary files supplied will be published online alongside the electronic version of your article in Elsevier Web products, including ScienceDirect: In order to ensure that your submitted material is directly usable, please provide the data in one of our recommended file formats. Authors should submit the material in electronic format together with the article and supply a concise and descriptive caption for each file. For more detailed instructions please visit our artwork instruction pages at

Data deposit and linking

Elsevier encourages authors to deposit raw data sets underpinning their research publication in data repositories, and to enable interlinking of articles and data. Please visit for more information on depositing and linking your data with a supported data repository.

Submission checklist

The following list will be useful during the final checking of an article prior to sending it to the journal for review. Please consult this Guide for Authors for further details of any item.

Ensure that the following items are present:
One author has been designated as the corresponding author with contact details:
• E-mail address
• Full postal address
• Phone numbers

All necessary files have been uploaded, and contain:
• Keywords
• All figure captions
• All tables (including title, description, footnotes)

Further considerations
• Manuscript has been 'spell-checked' and 'grammar-checked'
• References are in the correct format for this journal
• All references mentioned in the Reference list are cited in the text, and vice versa
• Permission has been obtained for use of copyrighted material from other sources (including the Web)
• Color figures are clearly marked as being intended for color reproduction on the Web (free of charge) and in print, or to be reproduced in color on the Web (free of charge) and in black-and-white in print
• If only color on the Web is required, black-and-white versions of the figures are also supplied for printing purposes

For any further information please visit our customer support site at

Additional information

The editorial and peer review process
As a general rule, the receipt of a manuscript will be acknowledged within 2 weeks of submission; authors will be provided with a manuscript reference number for future correspondence. If an acknowledgment is not received in a reasonable period of time, the author should contact the Editorial Office.

Submissions are reviewed by the Editorial Office to ensure that it contains all parts. Submissions will be rejected if the author has not supplied all the material and documents as outlined in this Guide for Authors.

Manuscripts are then reviewed by the Editors, who make an initial assessment. If the manuscript does not appear to be of sufficient merit or is not appropriate for the HKJN, the manuscript will be rejected without review. All other manuscripts are sent to two or more expert consultants for double-blind peer review.

The corresponding author will usually be notified within 12 weeks of the initial acknowledgment of whether the manuscript is accepted for publication, rejected, or subject to revision before acceptance. However, do note that delays are sometimes unavoidable. If revisions are required, authors are asked to return a revised manuscript to the Editorial Office via the EES within 6 months.

Preparation for publication
Once a manuscript has been accepted for publication, authors should submit the final version of their manuscript (and final versions of all tables/figures as applicable) via EES. Accepted manuscripts are copyedited according to the journal's style and PDF page proofs are e-mailed by the Publisher to the corresponding author for final approval. Authors are responsible for all statements made in their work, including changes made by the copyeditor.

Use of the Digital Object Identifier

The Digital Object Identifier (DOI) may be used to cite and link to electronic documents. The DOI consists of a unique alpha-numeric character string which is assigned to a document by the publisher upon the initial electronic publication. The assigned DOI never changes. Therefore, it is an ideal medium for citing a document, particularly 'Articles in press' because they have not yet received their full bibliographic information. Example of a correctly given DOI (in URL format, from an article in the journal Physics Letters B):
When you use a DOI to create links to documents on the web, the DOIs are guaranteed never to change.


One set of page proofs (as PDF files) will be sent by e-mail to the corresponding author (if we do not have an e-mail address then paper proofs will be sent by post) or, a link will be provided in the e-mail so that authors can download the files themselves. Elsevier now provides authors with PDF proofs which can be annotated; for this you will need to download Adobe Reader version 9 (or higher) available free from Instructions on how to annotate PDF files will accompany the proofs (also given online). The exact system requirements are given at the Adobe site:
If you do not wish to use the PDF annotations function, you may list the corrections (including replies to the Query Form) and return them to Elsevier in an e-mail. Please list your corrections quoting line number. If, for any reason, this is not possible, then mark the corrections and any other comments (including replies to the Query Form) on a printout of your proof and return by fax, or scan the pages and e-mail, or by post. Please use this proof only for checking the typesetting, editing, completeness and correctness of the text, tables and figures. Significant changes to the article as accepted for publication will only be considered at this stage with permission from the Editor. We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately – please let us have all your corrections within 48 hours. It is important to ensure that all corrections are sent back to us in one communication: please check carefully before replying, as inclusion of any subsequent corrections cannot be guaranteed. Proofreading is solely your responsibility. Note that Elsevier may proceed with the publication of your article if no response is received.


Authors may order reprints at any time via Elsevier's WebShop ( Authors requiring printed copies of multiple articles may use Elsevier WebShop's 'Create Your Own Book' service to collate multiple articles within a single cover (

You can track your submitted article at You can track your accepted article at You are also welcome to contact Customer Support via