Guide for Authors

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

    INTRODUCTION
    • Context
    • Relevant topics
    • Ethics Bioscience and Life
    • Types of papers
    • BEFORE YOU BEGIN
    • Ethics in publishing
    • Ethical procedures and statements
    • Conflict of interest
    • Author declaration
    • Plagiarism and duplicate publication
    • Contributors
    • Changes to authorship
    • Copyright
    • Role of the funding source
    • Funding body agreements and policies
    • Open access
    • Language (usage and editing services)
    • Informed consent and patient details
    • Submission
    • Referees
    • PREPARATION
    • Use of word processing software
    • Article structure
    • Graphical abstract
    • Highlights
    • Acknowledgements
    • References
    • Citation in text
    • Web references
    • Reference style
    • Journal abbreviations
    • Abbreviations
    • Nomenclature and units
    • Database linking
    • Footnotes
    • Artwork
    • Tables
    • Video data
    • AudioSlides
    • Supplementary material
    • Submission checklist
    • AFTER ACCEPTANCE
    • Use of the Digital Object Identifier
    • Proofs
    • Offprints
    AUTHOR INQUIRIES



    This journal covers the formation, growth and differentiation of the human embryo. It is intended to bring to public attention new research on biological and clinical research on human reproduction and the human embryo including relevant studies on animals. Its audience comprises researchers, clinicians, practitioners, academics and patients.

    Context

    The period of human embryonic growth covered is between the formation of the primordial germ cells in the fetus until mid-pregnancy. High quality research on lower animals is included if it helps to clarify the human situation. Studies progressing to birth and later are published if they have a direct bearing on events in the earlier stages of pregnancy.

    Relevant topics

    • Fertility and infertility
    • IVF and assisted reproduction
    • Reproductive endocrinology
    • Reproductive physiology
    • Fertilization
    • Gamete donation
    • Oocyte and ovary
    • Embryology
    • Preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD)
    • Genetic disorders afflicting the embryo and their alleviation
    • Cloning
    • Stem cells
    • Implantation and organogenesis
    • Pregnancy, fetus and birth
    • Ethics, social, legal, counselling

    Ethics Bioscience and Life

    Constant attention is applied to ethical matters. Where appropriate, articles covering ethical, religious and political topics arising through the treatment and care of various clinical conditions will be published in Ethics Bioscience and Life, an occasional supplement to the main journal that shares its impact factor. This supplement is published twice annually.

    Types of papers

    Original articles: a full-length report of original basic or clinical investigation. An abstract in a single paragraph with no subheadings, 200 words maximum is required. This should be comprehensible to readers before they read the article. Avoid abbreviations and reference citations. The rest of the paper should be structured as follows: Introduction, Materials and methods, Results, Discussion, Acknowledgements, References. RBMOnline gives priority to reports of original research that are likely to change clinical practice or thinking about a disease. Submission of randomized controlled trials requires inclusion of a checklist and flowchart in accordance with the CONSORT guidelines and the registration number of the trial and the name of the trial registry.

    Short communications: these must not exceed 1,000 words with no more than one table or illustration and five references. An abstract of no more than 100 words is required, presented in a single paragraph with no subheadings. The text should be structured in four parts: Introduction, Methods, Results and Discussion.

    Review articles: a comprehensive review of prior publications relating to an important clinical subject. An abstract of no more than 200 words is required, presented in a single paragraph with no subheadings. The Introduction should indicate why the topic is important and should state the specific objective(s) of the review. The Conclusion should include the clinical implications and observations regarding the need for additional research. Systematic reviews should follow the PRISMA guidelines. Meta-analysis of observational studies should follow the MOOSE guidelines.
    Further information can be obtained from the EQUATOR web site: http://www.equator-network.org/resource-centre/library-of-health-research-reporting/reporting-guidelines

    Ethics, social, legal, counselling: articles covering ethical, religious and political topics arising through the treatment and care of various clinical conditions in the field of reproductive medicine. An abstract in a single paragraph with no subheadings, 200 words maximum is required. The text can be unstructured or structured under headings of author's choice.

    Commentaries: for topics that authors wish to 'air'. Must not exceed 2,000 words with no more than one table or illustration and 10 references. An abstract in a single paragraph with no subheadings, 200 words maximum is required. The text can be unstructured or structured under headings of author's choice.

    Letters to the Editor: a question or challenge to an article published recently in RBMOnline. Letters must be received within 6 weeks of publication of the article to which they refer and should be no longer than 250 words.

    News: international news from a wide variety of sources, and other matters of relevance to the journal's fields of study are invited. These should be 200-700 words in length and may be published at the Editor's discretion (online and/or in hard copy).

    BEFORE YOU BEGIN

    Ethics in publishing

    For information on Ethics in publishing and Ethical guidelines for journal publication see http://www.elsevier.com/publishingethics and http://www.elsevier.com/journal-authors/ethics.

    Ethical procedures and statements

    The work described in your article must have been carried out in accordance with The Code of Ethics of the World Medical Association (Declaration of Helsinki) for experiments involving humans http://www.wma.net/e/policy/b3.htm; EC Directive 86/609/EEC for animal experiments http://ec.europa.eu/environment/chemicals/lab_animals/legislation_en.htm; Uniform Requirements for manuscripts submitted to Biomedical journals http://www.icmje.org.
    Ethical Approval Documentation is mandatory when submitting full-length articles and short communications, but not mandatory for other article types (reviews, commentaries, editorials). This documentation may take various forms. Authors would normally submit all proposed studies for consideration by their institution's Internal Review Board (IRB) or Ethics Committee. A copy of the response letter from their IRB/Ethics Committee, which clearly states that either approval is not required for the research to be undertaken or that approval has been granted, should be uploaded as part of the submission. However, if in the opinion of the authors no IRB/Ethics Committee approval is required, or no approving body is available to them, a written statement by the authors giving the relevant details should be uploaded in place of Ethical Approval Documentation.
    If the work involves chemicals, procedures or equipment that have any unusual hazards inherent in their use, the author must clearly identify these in the manuscript. The privacy rights of human subjects must always be observed.

    Conflict of interest

    All authors are requested to disclose any actual or potential conflict of interest including any financial, personal or other relationships with other people or organizations within three years of beginning the submitted work that could inappropriately influence, or be perceived to influence, their work. See also http://www.elsevier.com/conflictsofinterest. Further information and an example of a Conflict of Interest form can be found at: http://help.elsevier.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/286/p/7923.

    Author declaration

    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), 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 including electronically in the same form, in English or in any other language, without the written consent of the copyright-holder. It is mandatory for the submitting person to include an Author Declaration to this effect as part of the submission. The Author Declaration can be downloaded from the website at the time of submission.

    Plagiarism and duplicate publication

    The journal participates in the CrossCheck system which uses iThenticate software for the detection of similarities between submitted manuscripts and the published literature.
    Authors are advised to consider the application of software programs which address the very sensitive issues of self-copying, repetition, duplicate publication and plagiarism.
    Please see the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) website for definitions and further details.

    Contributors

    Submission of multi-authored manuscripts to this journal requires the consent of each author as stated in the Author Declaration. All authors and all contributors (including medical writers and editors) must specify their individual contributions at the end of the text. The following format is suggested: "I declare that I participated in the (here list contributions made to the study) and that I have seen and approved the final version. I have the following conflicts of interest" (list here all relevant conflicts and source of funding). This should be listed in the "Comments" field in EES.

    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.

    Copyright

    Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' (for more information on this and copyright see http://www.elsevier.com/copyright). Acceptance of the agreement will ensure the widest possible dissemination of information. An e-mail will be sent to the corresponding author confirming receipt of the manuscript together with a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' form or a link to the online version of this agreement.
    Subscribers may reproduce tables of contents or prepare lists of articles including abstracts for internal circulation within their institutions. Permission of the Publisher is required for resale or distribution outside the institution and for all other derivative works, including compilations and translations (please consult http://www.elsevier.com/permissions). If excerpts from other copyrighted works are included, the author(s) must obtain written permission from the copyright owners and credit the source(s) in the article. Elsevier has preprinted forms for use by authors in these cases: please consult http://www.elsevier.com/permissions.

    Retained author rights
    As an author you (or your employer or institution) retain certain rights; for details you are referred to: http://www.elsevier.com/authorsrights.

    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 http://www.elsevier.com/fundingbodies.

    Open access

    This journal does not ordinarily have publication charges; however, authors can now opt to make their articles available to all (including non-subscribers) via the ScienceDirect platform, for which a fee of US $3000 applies (for further information on open access see http://www.elsevier.com/about/open-access/open-access-options). Please note that you can only make this choice after receiving notification that your article has been accepted for publication, to avoid any perception of conflict of interest. The fee excludes taxes and other potential costs such as color charges. In some cases, institutions and funding bodies have entered into agreement with Elsevier to meet these fees on behalf of their authors. Details of these agreements are available at http://www.elsevier.com/fundingbodies. Authors of accepted articles, who wish to take advantage of this option, should complete and submit the order form (available at http://www.elsevier.com/locate/openaccessform.pdf). Whatever access option you choose, you retain many rights as an author, including the right to post a revised personal version of your article on your own website. More information can be found here: http://www.elsevier.com/authorsrights.
    Your publication choice will have no effect on the peer review process or acceptance of submitted articles.

    Language (usage and editing services)

    Please write your text in good English (American or British usage is accepted, but not a mixture of these). 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 (http://webshop.elsevier.com/languageediting/) or visit our customer support site (http://support.elsevier.com) 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, http://www.elsevier.com/patient-consent-policy. 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

    Submission to this journal proceeds totally online. Via the homepage of this journal, http://ees.elsevier.com/rbmo, you will be guided stepwise through the creation and uploading of the various files. Any queries concerning the submission/uploading process should be referred to the online support team at http://epsupport.elsevier.com. The system automatically converts source files to a single Adobe Acrobat PDF version of the article, which is used in the peer-review process. Please note that even though manuscript source files are converted to PDF 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 and via the author's homepage, removing the need for a hard-copy paper trail.

    Referees

    To expedite the review process, authors are invited to provide the editorial office with the names and email addresses of 3 potential referees that are able to competently review the article submitted for possible publication. The referees are not to be associated with or involved with the article in any way or be from the same institution as the author(s) involved with the article, and preferably not resident in the same country.

    PREPARATION

    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: http://www.elsevier.com/guidepublication). 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

    Title page
    Title. Concise and informative (maximum 15 words). Titles are often used in information-retrieval systems. Avoid abbreviations and formulae where possible.
    Author names and affiliations. 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. Indicate all affiliations with a lower-case superscript letter immediately after the author's name and in front of the appropriate address. Provide the full postal address of each affiliation, including the country name, and, if available, the e-mail address of each author.
    Corresponding author. Clearly indicate who will handle correspondence at all stages of refereeing and publication, also post-publication. Ensure that telephone and fax numbers (with country and area code) are provided in addition to the e-mail address and the complete postal address.
    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 an additional explanatory superscript 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 explanations.

    Abstract
    A concise and factual abstract is required, 200 words maximum in a single, continuous paragraph without subheadings. The abstract should state briefly the purpose of the research, the principal results and major conclusions. An abstract is often presented separate from the article, so it must be able to stand alone. For this reason, References should be avoided, but if essential, they must be cited in full, without reference to the reference list. Also, non-standard or uncommon abbreviations should be avoided, but if essential they must be defined at their first mention in the abstract itself.

    Keywords
    Immediately after the abstract, provide a maximum of 6 keywords, using British spelling and avoiding general and plural terms and multiple concepts (avoid, for example, "and", "of"). Be sparing with abbreviations: only abbreviations firmly established in the field may be eligible. These keywords will be used for indexing purposes.

    Summary
    A summary for lay readers is required of 250 words maximum. This must be understandable to a wider lay public and to patients. This summary is available in a special section on the journal homepage. It can be based on the Abstract, but all complex terms must be described simply. The summary must be included at submission in a separate file.

    Introduction
    The Introduction should describe the question addressed by the report and must state the objective of the research. The literature review should be relevant but not detailed.

    Materials and methods
    The Materials and methods section should describe the research methodology in sufficient detail that others could reasonably be expected to be able to duplicate the work. However, if the methodology has been previously published, the appropriate reference should be cited, and a full description is not required. Methods of statistical analysis should be identified and, when appropriate, the basis for their selection stated. Statistical software programs used should be cited in the text and if not well known, a reference given to how they may be obtained (URL or supplier name and address). P values should be expressed to no more than three decimal places. Reports in which statistical difference is lacking must provide some indication of the study's power to detect such differences, and this information must be included in the abstract.
    Where possible, live-birth data should be used as the primary outcome in the evaluation of any new protocol or equipment.

    Results
    The Results section should present the findings in appropriate detail. Tables and figures may be used, but duplication between text and tables or figures is to be avoided.

    Discussion
    The Discussion section should be used to critically appraise the implications of the findings and to compare them with those of other studies. Repetition of the results section should be avoided. The main conclusions of the study may be summarised in a paragraph at the end of the Discussion section.

    Graphical abstract

    A Graphical abstract is optional and should summarize the contents of the article in a concise, pictorial form designed to capture the attention of a wide readership online. Authors must provide images that clearly represent the work described in the article. Graphical abstracts should be submitted as a separate file in the online submission system. Image size: Please provide an image with a minimum of 531 × 1328 pixels (h × w) or proportionally more. The image should be readable at a size of 5 × 13 cm using a regular screen resolution of 96 dpi. Preferred file types: TIFF, EPS, PDF or MS Office files. See http://www.elsevier.com/graphicalabstracts for examples.
    Authors can make use of Elsevier's Illustration and Enhancement service to ensure the best presentation of their images also in accordance with all technical requirements: Illustration Service.

    Highlights

    Highlights are a short collection of bullet points that convey the core findings of the article. Highlights are optional and should be submitted in a separate file in the online submission system. Please use 'Highlights' in the file name and include 3 to 5 bullet points (maximum 85 characters, including spaces, per bullet point). See http://www.elsevier.com/highlights for examples.

    Acknowledgements

    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 proofreading the article, etc.).

    Persons who have contributed intellectually to the paper but whose contributions do not justify authorship may be named and their function or contribution described, e.g. "scientific adviser," "data collections," or "participation in clinical trial." Such persons must have given their permission to be named. Authors are responsible for obtaining written permission from the persons acknowledged by name, because readers may infer their endorsement of the data and conclusions.

    References

    Authors are responsible for the accuracy of references. The 'Harvard' style is used. References appearing for the first time in a table or figure should be cited in the text where the table or figure is mentioned.

    Citation in text

    Please ensure that every reference cited in the text is also present in the reference list (and vice versa). It is not recommended that references are cited in the abstract but if for some reason they must be, they must also be given in full in the reference list. Unpublished results are not recommended in the reference list but may be mentioned in the text. Exceptionally, if unpublished 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 "Unpublished results". Personal communications are not allowed in the reference list, but may be mentioned in the text where the name and brief address of the person must also be supplied. Citation of a reference as "in press" implies that the item has been accepted for publication.

    Web references

    As a minimum, the full URL should be given. 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.

    Reference style

    Text citations: All citations in the text should refer to:
    1. Single author: the author's name (without initials, unless there is ambiguity) and the year of publication;
    2. Two authors: both authors' names and the year of publication;
    3. More than three authors: first author's name followed by "et al." and the year of publication.
    Citations may be made directly (or parenthetically). Groups of references should be listed first alphabetically, then chronologically.
    Examples: "as demonstrated (Allan, 1996a, 1996b, 1999; Allan and Jones, 1995). Kramer et al. (2000) have recently shown ...."
    Reference list: Please provide name and initial(s) for all authors, followed by year of publication. References should be arranged first alphabetically and then further sorted chronologically if necessary. More than one reference from the same author(s) in the same year must be identified by the letters "a", "b", "c", etc., placed after the year of publication.
    Examples:
    Reference to a journal publication:
    Van der Geer, J., Hanraads, J.A.J., Lupton, R.A., 2000. The art of writing a scientific article. J. Sci. Commun. 163, 51–59.
    Reference to a book:
    Strunk Jr., W., White, E.B., 1979. The Elements of Style, third ed. Macmillan, New York.
    Reference to a chapter in an edited book:
    Mettam, G.R., Adams, L.B., 1999. How to prepare an electronic version of your article, in: Jones, B.S., Smith , R.Z. (Eds.), Introduction to the Electronic Age. E-Publishing Inc., New York, pp. 281–304.

    Journal abbreviations

    Journal names should be abbreviated according to Index Medicus journal abbreviations: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/tsd/serials/lji.html

    Abbreviations

    Define abbreviations that are not standard in this field at first mention. Such abbreviations that are unavoidable in the abstract must be defined at their first mention there, as well as at first mention in the text. Ensure consistency of abbreviations throughout the article.

    Nomenclature and units

    Follow internationally accepted rules and conventions: use the international system of units (SI). If other quantities are mentioned, give their equivalent in SI. You are urged to consult IUB: Biochemical Nomenclature and Related Documents: http://www.chem.qmw.ac.uk/iubmb/ for further information.

    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 http://www.elsevier.com/databaselinking for more information and a full list of supported databases.

    Footnotes

    Footnotes should NOT be used in the text of submissions to the main journal of RBMOnline. Footnotes are permitted sparingly in submissions to the Ethics, Bioscience and Life supplement to RBMOnline. If used, number them consecutively throughout the article, using superscript Arabic numbers. Many wordprocessors build footnotes into the text, and this feature may be used. Should this not be the case, indicate the position of footnotes in the text and present the footnotes themselves separately at the end of the article. Do not include footnotes in the Reference list. Table footnotes are permitted in all submissions. Indicate each footnote in a table with a superscript lowercase letter.

    Artwork

    Electronic artwork
    General points
    • Make sure you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.
    • Save text in illustrations as "graphics" or enclose the font.
    • Only use the following fonts in your illustrations: Arial, Courier, Times, Symbol.
    • Do not use titles in illustrations; instead, provide information in the caption.
    • Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
    • Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files.
    • Provide captions to illustrations separately.
    • Produce images near to the desired size of the printed version.
    • Photomicrographs must carry scale bars in case of resizing during the production process.
    • Submit each figure as a separate file.

    A detailed guide on electronic artwork is available on our website:
    http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions
    You are urged to visit this site; some excerpts from the detailed information are given here.
    Formats
    Regardless of the application used, when your electronic artwork is finalised, 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: Vector drawings. Embed the font or save the text as "graphics".
    TIFF: colour or grayscale photographs (halftones): always use a minimum of 300 dpi.
    TIFF: Bitmapped line drawings: use a minimum of 1000 dpi.
    TIFF: Combinations bitmapped line/half-tone (colour or grayscale): a minimum of 500 dpi is required.
    DOC, XLS or PPT: If your electronic artwork is created in any of these Microsoft Office applications please supply "as is".
    Please do not:
    • Supply embedded graphics in your wordprocessor (spreadsheet, presentation) document;
    • Supply files that are optimised for screen use (like GIF, BMP, PICT, WPG); the resolution is too low;
    • Supply files that are too low in resolution;
    • Submit graphics that are disproportionately large for the content.

    Colour artwork
    Please make sure that artwork files are in an acceptable format (TIFF, EPS or MS Office files) and with the correct resolution. If, together with your accepted article, you submit usable colour figures then Elsevier will ensure, at no additional charge, that these figures will appear in colour on the Web (e.g., ScienceDirect and other sites) regardless of whether or not these illustrations are reproduced in colour in the printed version. For colour reproduction in print, you will receive information regarding the costs from Elsevier after receipt of your accepted article. Please indicate your preference for colour in print or on the Web only. For further information on the preparation of electronic artwork, please see http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.
    Please note: Because of technical complications which can arise by converting colour figures to "gray scale" (for the printed version should you not opt for colour in print) please submit in addition usable black and white versions of all the colour illustrations.

    Figure captions
    Ensure that each illustration 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.

    Tables

    Number tables consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text. Place footnotes to tables below the table body and indicate them with superscript lowercase letters. Avoid vertical rules. Be sparing in the use of tables and ensure that the data presented in tables do not duplicate results described elsewhere in the article.

    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: http://www.sciencedirect.com. 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 http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions. 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.

    AudioSlides

    The journal encourages authors to create an AudioSlides presentation with their published article. AudioSlides are brief, webinar-style presentations that are shown next to the online article on ScienceDirect. This gives authors the opportunity to summarize their research in their own words and to help readers understand what the paper is about. More information and examples are available at http://www.elsevier.com/audioslides. Authors of this journal will automatically receive an invitation e-mail to create an AudioSlides presentation after acceptance of their paper.

    Supplementary material

    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: http://www.sciencedirect.com. 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 http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.

    Submission checklist

    It is hoped that this list will be useful when submitting your article. Please consult this Guide for Authors for further details of any item.
    Ensure that the following items are present in your uploaded manuscript:
    Title page: include title and list of authors in the correct order
    One author designated as Corresponding Author:
    • E-mail address
    • Full postal address
    • Telephone and fax numbers
    All necessary files have been uploaded:
    • Abstract (one single paragraph of not more than 200 words)
    • Keywords
    • All figure captions
    • All tables (including title, description, footnotes)
    Further considerations:
    • Manuscript has been "spellchecked" 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)
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