Letters should focus on the key developments presented and discussed at the meeting and are intended to rely largely on the work described at the meeting, rather than being fully referenced accounts of a field. For particularly large meetings it is preferable that more in-depth information is given on a few selected topics, rather than a brief account of absolutely everything presented. The main content of the Letters should focus on new research discoveries and the application of this knowledge.
Manuscripts must be submitted by one of the authors of the manuscript, and should not be submitted by anyone on their behalf. The submitting author takes responsibility for the article during submission.
To facilitate rapid publication and to minimize administrative costs, Progress in Biology prefers online submission.
2. File formats
The following word processor file formats are acceptable for the main manuscript document:
� Microsoft word (DOC, DOCX)
� Rich text format (RTF)
� Portable document format (PDF)
3. Preparing main manuscript text
Length of article
Letters should be between 600 to 1200 words.
Overview of manuscript sections for Letters
Manuscripts for Letters submitted to should be divided into the following sections (in this order):
� Title page
� Main text
� List of abbreviations used (if any)
� Competing interests
The Accession Numbers of any nucleic acid sequences, protein sequences or atomic coordinates cited in the manuscript should be provided, in square brackets and include the corresponding database name; for example, [EMBL:AB026295, EMBL:AC137000, DDBJ:AE000812, GenBank:U49845, PDB:1BFM, Swiss-Prot:Q96KQ7, PIR:S66116].
The databases for which we can provide direct links are: EMBL Nucleotide Sequence Database (EMBL), DNA Data Bank of Japan (DDBJ), GenBank at the NCBI (GenBank), Protein Data Bank (PDB), Protein Information Resource (PIR) and the Swiss-Prot Protein Database (Swiss-Prot). Note that there should not be a reference list, and references are to be avoided (the odd one can be cited in the text if it is essential and describes work from labs other than those cited for giving talks at the meeting). If abstracts from the meeting are published in print or on the web, a single reference / link should be given to where they can be found, usually as the meeting is first mentioned, in the forms � 'the 39th annual meeting of the American Society for Cell Biology, Washington DC, December 11-15, 1999 (abstracts are freely available online [http://www.ascb.org/ascb/])' � 'the 39th annual meeting of the American Society for Cell Biology, Washington DC, December 11-15, 1999 (abstracts published in a Supplement to Molecular Biology of the Cell 1999)'
This should list the title of the article, the full names, institutional addresses and email addresses for all authors. The corresponding author should also be indicated.
A short, unstructured, single paragraph of 25-40 words giving an indication of the meeting on which the report is based; if it is based on one symposium at a big meeting, say so here.
Three to ten keywords representing the main content of the article.
This should contain the body of the article, and may be broken into subsections with short, informative headings. Headings should describe the section contents but there should be no more than four in an article. For each speaker mentioned, it is important to provide their full name, institute/company and country. Speakers should be referred to in one of the following ways:
� David Botstein (Stanford University Medical School, USA) emphasized the importance of...
� As detailed by Gerry Rubin (University of California Berkeley, USA)...
� is under way at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (poster presented by Pierre G�nczy)
On second mention, the speaker becomes just 'Botstein' (no first name, no affiliation). The text should not contain information about the lecture hall, food, weather or other non-scientific matters. If 'earlier' work is referred to, whether or not it has been published, it should simply be referred to as 'published work from the lab of Tom Pollard (The Salk Institute)', or 'Botstein's earlier work', according to whether or not the author of the earlier work has been mentioned already. If the report author mentions their own talk, or work they were involved in, they should use 'I' or 'we', rather than the disingenuous 'Author X reported'.
LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS
If abbreviations are used in the text they should be defined in the text at first use, and a list of abbreviations can be provided, which should precede the competing interests and authors' contributions.
A competing interest exists when your interpretation of data or presentation of information may be influenced by your personal or financial relationship with other people or organizations. Authors must disclose any financial competing interests; they should also reveal any non-financial competing interests that may cause them embarrassment were they to become public after the publication of the manuscript.
Authors are required to complete a declaration of competing interests. All competing interests that are declared will be listed at the end of published articles. Where an author gives no competing interests, the listing will read 'The author(s) declare that they have no competing interests'.
When completing your declaration, please consider the following questions:
Financial competing interests
� In the past five years have you received reimbursements, fees, funding, or salary from an organization that may in any way gain or lose financially from the publication of this manuscript, either now or in the future? Is such an organization financing this manuscript (including the article-processing charge)? If so, please specify.
� Do you hold any stocks or shares in an organization that may in any way gain or lose financially from the publication of this manuscript, either now or in the future? If so, please specify.
� Do you hold or are you currently applying for any patents relating to the content of the manuscript? Have you received reimbursements, fees, funding, or salary from an organization that holds or has applied for patents relating to the content of the manuscript? If so, please specify.
� Do you have any other financial competing interests? If so, please specify.
Non-financial competing interests
Are there any non-financial competing interests (political, personal, religious, ideological, academic, intellectual, commercial or any other) to declare in relation to this manuscript? If so, please specify.
If you are unsure as to whether you, or one your co-authors, has a competing interest please discuss it with the editorial office.
Please acknowledge anyone who contributed towards the article by making substantial contributions to conception, design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data, or who was involved in drafting the manuscript or revising it critically for important intellectual content, but who does not meet the criteria for authorship.
Please also include the source(s) of funding for each author, and for the manuscript preparation. Authors must describe the role of the funding body, if any, in design, in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; in the writing of the manuscript; and in the decision to submit the manuscript for publication.
Please also acknowledge anyone who contributed materials essential for the study.
If a language editor has made significant revision of the manuscript, we recommend that you acknowledge the editor by name, where possible. The role of a scientific (medical) writer must be included in the acknowledgements section, including their source(s) of funding. We suggest wording such as 'We thank Jane Doe who provided medical writing services on behalf of XYZ Pharmaceuticals Ltd.'
Authors should obtain permission to acknowledge from all those mentioned in the Acknowledgements section.
Endnotes should be designated within the text using a superscript lowercase letter and all notes (along with their corresponding letter) should be included in the Endnotes section. Please format this section in a paragraph rather than a list.
Literature citations in the text should indicate the author's surname with the year of publication in parentheses, e.g. Carlin (1992); Brooks and Carlin (1992).
If there are more than two authors, only the first should be named, followed by "et al."
References at the end of the paper should be listed in alphabetical order by the first author's name.
If there is more than one work by the same author or team of authors in the same year, a, b, etc. is added to the year both in the text and in the list of references.
Journal papers: name(s) and initial(s) of all authors; year; full title; journal title abbreviated in accordance with international practice; volume number; first and last page numbers
Nakashima K, Yamada L, Satou Y, Azuma J, Satoh N (2004)The evolutionary origin of animal cellulose synthase. Dev Genes Evol 214: 81-88
Single contribution in a book: name(s) and initial(s) of all authors; year; title of article; editor(s); title of book; edition; volume number; publisher; place of publication; page numbers
Sanger JW (1977) Nontubulin molecules in the spindle. In: Little M, Paweletz N, Petzelt C, Ponstingl H, Schroeter D, Zimmermann H-P (eds) Mitosis facts and questions. Springer, Berlin Heidelberg New York, pp 98-113
Book: name and initial(s) of all authors; year; title; publisher; place of publication
Example: Hall BK (1999) The Neural Crest in Development and Evolution. Springer, Berlin Heidelberg New York
Agency publication: Council of biology editors style manual. CBE style manual committee. 5th ed. Bethesda, MD: Council of Biology Editors; 1983.
1. Article by DOI (with page numbers): Slifka MK, Whitton JL (2000) Clinical implications of dysregulated cytokine production. J Mol Med 78:74–80. doi: 10.1007/s001090000086
2. Article by DOI (before issue publication with page numbers): Slifka MK, Whitton JL (2000) Clinical implications of dysregulated cytokine production. J Mol Med (in press). doi: 10.1007/s001090000086
3. Article in electronic journal by DOI (no paginated version): Slifka MK, Whitton JL (2000) Clinical implications of dysregulated cytokine production. Dig J Mol Med. doi: 10.1007/s801090000086
4. Online document: Doe J (1999) Title of subordinate document. In: The dictionary of substances and their effects. Royal Society of Chemistry.Available via DIALOG. http://www.rsc.org/dose/title of subordinate document. Cited 15 Jan 1999
5. Online database: Healthwise Knowledgebase (1998) US Pharmacopeia, Rockville. http://www.healthwise.org. Cited 21 Sept 1998
6. Supplementary material/private homepage: Doe J (2000) Title of supplementary material. http://www.privatehomepage.com. Cited 22 Feb 2000
7. University site: Doe J (1999) Title of preprint. http://www.uni-heidelberg.de/mydata.html. Cited 25 Dec 1999
8. FTP site Doe J (1999) Trivial HTTP, RFC2169. ftp://ftp.isi.edu/in-notes/rfc2169.txt. Cited 12 Nov 1999
9. Organization site: ISSN International Centre (1999) Global ISSN database. http://www.issn.org. Cited 20 Feb 2000
Unpublished results may be cited in the text as personal communications.
However, in this case the final version of the manuscript must be accompanied by a note of consent signed by each author quoted.
Style files are available for use with popular bibliographic management software: Endnote Style file (click here to download and add to style folder in your Endnote program)
PREPARING ILLUSTRATIONS AND FIGURES
Illustrations should be provided as separate files, not embedded in the text file.
Each figure should include a single illustration and should fit on a single page in portrait format.
If a figure consists of separate parts, it is important that a single composite illustration file be submitted which contains all parts of the figure.
There is no charge for the use of color figures.
The following file formats can be accepted:
� PDF (preferred format for diagrams)
� DOCX/DOC (single page only)
� PPTX/PPT (single slide only)
� PNG (preferred format for photos or images)
Progress in Biology will edit all figures supplied by the author. For this reason it is especially important that authors should supply figures in vector form, to facilitate such editing.
The legends should be included in the main manuscript text file at the end of the document, rather than being a part of the figure file.
For each figure, the following information should be provided: Figure number (in sequence, using Arabic numerals - i.e. Figure 1, 2, 3 etc); short title of figure (maximum 15 words); detailed legend, up to 300 words.
Please note that it is the responsibility of the author(s) to obtain permission from the copyright holder to reproduce figures or tables that have previously been published elsewhere.
Each table should be numbered and cited in sequence using Arabic numerals (i.e. Table 1, 2, 3 etc.).
Tables should also have a title (above the table) that summarizes the whole table; it should be no longer than 15 words. Detailed legends may then follow, but they should be concise.
Tables should always be cited in text in consecutive numerical order. Smaller tables considered to be integral to the manuscript can be pasted into the end of the document text file, in A4 portrait or landscape format.
These will be typeset and displayed in the final published form of the article. Such tables should be formatted using the 'Table object' in a word processing program to ensure that columns of data are kept aligned when the file is sent electronically for review; this will not always be the case if columns are generated by simply using tabs to separate text. Columns and rows of data should be made visibly distinct by ensuring that the borders of each cell display as black lines. Commas should not be used to indicate numerical values. Color and shading may not be used; parts of the table can be highlighted using symbols or bold text, the meaning of which should be explained in a table legend.
Tables should not be embedded as figures or spreadsheet files. Larger datasets or tables too wide for a landscape page can be uploaded separately as additional files.
Additional files will not be displayed in the final, laid-out PDF of the article, but a link will be provided to the files as supplied by the author.
Tabular data provided as additional files can be uploaded as an Excel spreadsheet (.xls ) or comma separated values (.csv).
As with all files, please use the standard file extensions.