Guide for Authors

All journal information and instructions compiled in one document (PDF) in just one mouse-click Download Guide for Authors in PDF

Brain & Development is aimed to promote clinical child neurology and developmental neuroscience. Submissions considered for publication to Brain & Development are received on the understanding 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and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere in the same form, in English or in any other language, without the written consent of the copyright-holder.

For information on Ethical guidelines for journal publication see

Submission of manuscripts

Brain & Development now proceeds totally online via an online submission system. In case you do not have an internet connection, please contact the Editor-in-Chief for alternative instructions. By accessing the online submission via Elsevier Editorial System, you will be guided stepwise through the creation and uploading of the various files. When submitting a manuscript online, authors need to provide an electronic version of their manuscript and any accompanying figures and tables.

The journal is dedicated to the field of clinical child neurology and related neuroscience, and covers topics such as physiological and pathological brain development, neurodevelopmental disorders, cerebral palsy, genetic and metabolic disorders of the nervous system, epilepsy and seizure disorders, movement disorders, fetal and neonatal neurology, infectious and inflammatory disorders of the nervous system, neuromuscular disorders, and other neurologic diseases of infants and children.

The author should select from a list of scientific classifications, which will be used to help the editors select reviewers with appropriate expertise, and an article type for their manuscript. Once the uploading is done, the system automatically generates an electronic (PDF) proof, which is then used for reviewing. All correspondence, including the Editor's decision and request for revisions, will be processed through the system and will reach the corresponding author by e-mail.

Once a manuscript has successfully been submitted via the online submission system authors may track the status of their manuscript using the online submission system (details will be provided by e-mail). If your manuscript is accepted by the journal, subsequent tracking facilities are available on Elsevier's Author Gateway, using the unique reference number provided by Elsevier and corresponding author name (details will be provided by e-mail).

For revisions, your revised manuscript should be submitted within 90 days, failing which it will be expired automatically. If you would require more than 90 days for submitting the revision, please submit as a new submission.

Authors may send queries concerning the submission process or journal procedures to the Central Editorial Office: Katsuhiro Kobayashi, Editor-in-Chief:

For further details on how to submit online, please visit our Support Center.

Please prepare manuscripts in conformance with the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals (


Only English articles will be accepted. Authors whose native language is not English should enlist the help of colleagues who are proficient in scientific English.

Please write your text in clear and grammatical English (American or British usage is accepted, but not a mixture of these) and authors should conform to the general style of the journal and the specific instructions listed below. Authors who require information about language editing and copyediting services pre- and post-submission please visit for more information. Please note Elsevier neither endorses nor takes responsibility for any products, goods or services offered by outside vendors through our services or in any advertising.

Manuscripts that are written in poor English and/or not properly prepared will be returned to the authors without review, since it is not feasible for the Editors to undertake extensive revision or rewriting of manuscripts submitted.

Drugs should be referred to using international non-proprietary (generic) names. All acronyms should be spelled out at the first usage except for MRI, CT, EEG, IQ, and PCR.


For all manuscripts dealing with experimental work involving human subjects, specify that informed?consent was obtained following a full explanation of the procedure(s) undertaken. Patients should be referred to by number; do not use real names, initials or hospital numbers. Also, the design of special scientific research (e.g. genetic research and regenerative medicine) in human diseases or of animal experiments should be approved by the ethical committee of the institution. Animal experiments must conform to guidelines on animal care and use currently applied in the country of origin. This must be stated at the last part of Method section with a heading "Ethics" in the article. The institutional approval may not be required for genetic testing primarily for a diagnostic purpose.

Patient details

Unless you have written permission from the patient (or, where applicable, the next of kin), personal details of patients included in any part of the article and in any supplementary materials (including all illustrations and videos) must be removed before submission. For further information see

Conflict of Interest

Based on the detailed enforcement regulation of the guideline for Conflict of Interest's management in conducting clinical research, all authors must indicate whether or not they have a financial relationship with the organization that sponsored the research. (They should also state that they agree to allow the journal to review their data if requested.)
The manuscript must be accompanied by the "Potential Conflict of Interest Report for Authors". This form can be obtained from here. At the time of submission, please be sure to attach this form also the submitting author must include a COI statement in the body of the manuscript. The statement will describe all the authors' relationships with companies that may have a financial interest in the information contained in the manuscript. This information should be provided under the heading titled ' Conflict of Interest Disclosures,' which should appear after the 'Acknowledgements' section and before the 'References' section. The absence of any interest to disclose must also be stated as "The authors declare no competing interests."

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, a published lecture or academic thesis, see 'Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication' for more information), 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 Crossref Similarity Check.

Please note that preprints can be shared anywhere at any time, in line with Elsevier's sharing policy. Sharing your preprints e.g. on a preprint server will not count as prior publication (see 'Multiple, redundant or concurrent publication' for more information).

Use of inclusive language

Inclusive language acknowledges diversity, conveys respect to all people, is sensitive to differences, and promotes equal opportunities. Content should make no assumptions about the beliefs or commitments of any reader; contain nothing which might imply that one individual is superior to another on the grounds of age, gender, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual orientation, disability or health condition; and use inclusive language throughout. Authors should ensure that writing is free from bias, stereotypes, slang, reference to dominant culture and/or cultural assumptions. We advise to seek gender neutrality by using plural nouns ("clinicians, patients/clients") as default/wherever possible to avoid using "he, she," or "he/she." We recommend avoiding the use of descriptors that refer to personal attributes such as age, gender, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual orientation, disability or health condition unless they are relevant and valid. These guidelines are meant as a point of reference to help identify appropriate language but are by no means exhaustive or definitive.


Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' (see more information on this). 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. 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.

Author rights
As an author you (or your employer or institution) have certain rights to reuse your work. More information.

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.

Open access

Please visit our Open Access page for more information.

Referee recommendations and negative preference

To help ensure that papers are reviewed by the most suitable referees, authors may provide a list of three potential referees (including names, addresses, fax and e-mail) who do not have conflict of interest in the research being submitted. The Editors reserve the right to choose different referees from the ones suggested. You may also suggest reviewers you do not want to review your manuscript, but please state your reasons for doing so.

Article Types

Original Articles
These may describe original clinical or laboratory research. The main text of original articles should generally be in the format of: Structured Abstract, Keywords, Introduction, Materials/Subjects, Methods, Results and Discussion. Authors are reminded that articles should be clear and concise and non-standard abbreviations avoided. Please provide approximately 250 words structured abstract and 3-9 keywords separately. Up to 30 references are recommended.

Reviews may concern either clinical or laboratory scientific topics. Relatively brief reviews of between 2,500 and 3,000 words are particularly welcome. Longer reviews are acceptable when justified by topic and comprehensiveness. The format of the main text is same as above original articles.

Case Reports
A case report should describe a new disease, or confirmation of a rare or new disease; a new insight into pathogenesis, etiology, diagnosis, or treatment; or a new finding associated with a currently known disease. A report of special scientific investigation, even in a single patient, will be regarded as an original article. The length should ordinarily be less than 1,500 words, with no more than a total of 3 tables and figures and 20 references. This can be exceeded only when justified by extensive special studies. The format of the main text of case reports is also same as original articles.

Letters to the Editor
These should be up to 300 words in length, and should be submitted in response to material published in the journal to make small clinical points or to introduce a point of view. They can be accompanied by up to 5 references but no illustrations. Letters do not carry an abstract.

Proceedings of Meetings
Full manuscripts or abstracts of papers presented at scientific meetings shall be considered for publication as Proceedings in the form either of a supplementary volume, a special issue, or as a section in an issue. Publication will be at the discretion of the editors. Printing costs should be borne by the contributor.

As an approximate guide to authors judging the length of their paper, the following estimation may be used: 3 typewritten A4 pages = 1 printed page; 3 'average' figures + legends = 1 printed page; 3 'average' tables = 1 printed page; 35 references = 1 printed page.

Manuscript format

The manuscript should be set out with the following sections beginning on a new page:

(i) Title page (title taking up to 80 spaces; full names and affiliations of all cited authors with the surname in uppercase letters; corresponding author's name, full mailing address, fax number, and email address; present address of authors where appropriate); See concrete examples
(ii) Structured abstract and 3-9 key words;
(iii) Text and acknowledgments
(iv) Conflict of Interest Disclosures
(v) References; See concrete examples
(vi) Figure legends;
(vii) Tables with their legends.

Effective and apt keywords will help others find your article quickly and accurately.

References to literature must be indicated by Arabic numerals in square parentheses which run consecutively through the paper. Where a reference is cited more than once in the text the same number should be used each time. Reference style should follow the "Vancouver" style described in the "Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals" (further information can be found at The titles of journals should be abbreviated according to the style used in Index Medicus. See concrete examples

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. The correct format for citing a DOI is shown as follows (example taken from a document in the journal Brain & Development):

(1) List all authors or editors, but if there are more than six, list first six plus et al.(2) Full first page number and shortened form for last page number of articles should be provided. (e.g. 51-9). Unpublished data and personal communications should be given in round parentheses in the text and not as references.(3) Reference information should be indicated correctly, not from the database, but from the original paper if possible.

Japanese journals should appear with the full Japanese name in Roman letters, e.g. No To Hattatsu. To refer to a book or journal article written in Japanese, the phrase " (in Japanese)" should be added after the title of the book or article. References written in a language other than English should be used minimally, the fewest possible.

Examples of journals

[1] Okanishi T, Saito Y, Ohno K. Acute encephalitis with refractory, repetitive partial seizures (AERRPS). Brain Dev 2009;31:92-3.
[2] Barnerias C, Boddaert N, Pascale G, Isabelle D, Pannier LH, Dulac O, et al. Unusual magnetic resonance imaging features in Menkes disease. Brain Dev 2008;30:489-92.

Electronic publication ahead of print
[3] Gunji A, Inagaki M, Inoue Y, Takeshima Y, Kaga M. Event-related potentials of self-face recognition in children with pervasive developmental disorders. Brain Dev 2009, in press. Doi: 10.1016/j.braindev.2008.04.011.

Journal article in Japanese
[4] Ogawa A, Hamamoto K, Hirose S, Fujikawa M, Mitsudome A. Sympathetic skin response in patients with severe motor and intellectual disabilities (in Japanese). No To Hattatsu (Tokyo) 2007;39:347-50.

Examples of books and other monographs

Personal author(s)
[5] Aicardi J. Diseases of the Nervous System in Childhood. 3rd ed. New York: John Wiley & Sons Inc; 2009.

Editor(s), compiler(s)
[6] Armstrong DL, Halliday W, Hawkings C, Takashima S, editors. Pediatric Neuropathology: A Text-Atlas. New York: Springer; 2007

Chapter in a book
[7] Sarnat HB. Cerebral plasticity in embryological development. In: Fukuyama Y, Suzuki Y, Kamoshita S, Casaer P, editors. Fetal and perinatal neurology. Basel: Karger; 1992. p. 118-31.

Japanese book
[8] Igarashi T, Ishii M, Takida J, Hiraiwa M, Mizuguchi M, Yokota S, editors. Evidence-based Pediatrics 2007-2008 (in Japanese). Tokyo: Chugai-Igakusha; 2007.

Refer to "NLM's International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals: Sample References webpage":

Peer review

This journal operates a single anonymized review process. All contributions will be initially assessed by the editor for suitability for the journal. Papers deemed suitable are then typically sent to a minimum of two independent expert reviewers to assess the scientific quality of the paper. The Editor is responsible for the final decision regarding acceptance or rejection of articles. The Editor's decision is final. Editors are not involved in decisions about papers which they have written themselves or have been written by family members or colleagues or which relate to products or services in which the editor has an interest. Any such submission is subject to all of the journal's usual procedures, with peer review handled independently of the relevant editor and their research groups. More information on types of peer review.

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.


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 published version.
• Submit each illustration as a separate file.
• Ensure that color images are accessible to all, including those with impaired color vision.

A detailed guide on electronic artwork is available.
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 online (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, you will receive information regarding the costs from Elsevier after receipt of your accepted article. Please indicate your preference for color: in print or online only. Further information on the preparation of electronic artwork.

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.


Please submit tables as editable text and not as images. Tables can be placed either next to the relevant text in the article, or on separate page(s) at the end. Number tables consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text and place any table notes below the table body. Be sparing in the use of tables and ensure that the data presented in them do not duplicate results described elsewhere in the article. Please avoid using vertical rules and shading in table cells.

Users of Mendeley Desktop can easily install the reference style for this journal by clicking the following link:
When preparing your manuscript, you will then be able to select this style using the Mendeley plug-ins for Microsoft Word or LibreOffice.

Supplementary material

Supplementary material such as applications, images and sound clips, can be published with your article to enhance it. Submitted supplementary items are published exactly as they are received (Excel or PowerPoint files will appear as such online). Please submit your material together with the article and supply a concise, descriptive caption for each supplementary file. If you wish to make changes to supplementary material during any stage of the process, please make sure to provide an updated file. Do not annotate any corrections on a previous version. Please switch off the 'Track Changes' option in Microsoft Office files as these will appear in the published version. Material that should not be published (e.g. Institutional Review Board [IRB] Approval, Informed Consent Form, etc.) is to be designated as Author Agreement as the file type and NOT as e-Component at submission.

Research data

This journal encourages and enables you to share data that supports your research publication where appropriate, and enables you to interlink the data with your published articles. Research data refers to the results of observations or experimentation that validate research findings. To facilitate reproducibility and data reuse, this journal also encourages you to share your software, code, models, algorithms, protocols, methods and other useful materials related to the project.

Below are a number of ways in which you can associate data with your article or make a statement about the availability of your data when submitting your manuscript. If you are sharing data in one of these ways, you are encouraged to cite the data in your manuscript and reference list. Please refer to the "References" section for more information about data citation. For more information on depositing, sharing and using research data and other relevant research materials, visit the research data page.

Data linking
If you have made your research data available in a data repository, you can link your article directly to the dataset. Elsevier collaborates with a number of repositories to link articles on ScienceDirect with relevant repositories, giving readers access to underlying data that gives them a better understanding of the research described.

There are different ways to link your datasets to your article. When available, you can directly link your dataset to your article by providing the relevant information in the submission system. For more information, visit the database linking page.

For supported data repositories a repository banner will automatically appear next to your published article on ScienceDirect.

In addition, you can link to relevant data or entities through identifiers within the text of your manuscript, using the following format: Database: xxxx (e.g., TAIR: AT1G01020; CCDC: 734053; PDB: 1XFN).

Mendeley Data
This journal supports Mendeley Data, enabling you to deposit any research data (including raw and processed data, video, code, software, algorithms, protocols, and methods) associated with your manuscript in a free-to-use, open access repository. During the submission process, after uploading your manuscript, you will have the opportunity to upload your relevant datasets directly to Mendeley Data. The datasets will be listed and directly accessible to readers next to your published article online.

For more information, visit the Mendeley Data for journals page.

Data statement
To foster transparency, we encourage you to state the availability of your data in your submission. This may be a requirement of your funding body or institution. If your data is unavailable to access or unsuitable to post, you will have the opportunity to indicate why during the submission process, for example by stating that the research data is confidential. The statement will appear with your published article on ScienceDirect. For more information, visit the Data Statement page.

Online proof correction

To ensure a fast publication process of the article, we kindly ask authors to provide us with their proof corrections within two days. Corresponding authors will receive an e-mail with a link to our online proofing system, allowing annotation and correction of proofs online. The environment is similar to MS Word: in addition to editing text, you can also comment on figures/tables and answer questions from the Copy Editor. Web-based proofing provides a faster and less error-prone process by allowing you to directly type your corrections, eliminating the potential introduction of errors.
If preferred, you can still choose to annotate and upload your edits on the PDF version. All instructions for proofing will be given in the e-mail we send to authors, including alternative methods to the online version and PDF.
We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately. 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. 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.


The corresponding author will, at no cost, receive 50 free paper offprints, or alternatively a customized Share Link providing 50 days free access to the final published version of the article on ScienceDirect. The Share Link can be used for sharing the article via any communication channel, including email and social media. For an extra charge, paper offprints can be ordered via the offprint order form which is sent once the article is accepted for publication. Both corresponding and co-authors may order offprints at any time via Elsevier's Webshop. Corresponding authors who have published their article open access do not receive a Share Link as their final published version of the article is available open access on ScienceDirect and can be shared through the article DOI link.

Visit the Elsevier Support Center to find the answers you need. Here you will find everything from Frequently Asked Questions to ways to get in touch.
You can also check the status of your submitted article or find out when your accepted article will be published.

Brain & Development does not have page charges.
Last update August 2020