Aps Bibliography Style Citation

I just started to use BibTeX and have found it amazingly convenient. So far I have tried to use the style file from arXiv, and copied the BibTeX information directly from the site of inspire. It works well since it produced the closest reference style that I wanted. However, I still am facing two problems:

  1. The field was not handled correctly, I have to manually add arXiv to the field eprint to have the proper output, eg, .
  2. In fact, sometimes I don't want to display the field.

Since I knew very little about BibTeX so I was really confused by looking at the content of the the bst file. It seems to take an expert to the modify it in order to achieve what I wanted above.

On the other hand, I understood that RevTeX provides certain BibTeX style files that suit the corresponding journals. So I downloaded the RevTeX package, from it I found several style files and used in the place of . However, I get some really strange results.

I tried to use MiKTeX in windows (and also TeXLive in linux, the later compiles well when I used ), but it doesn't work as desired, I got some uninterpreted TeX markup in the reference section of the resulting / file. To sum up my configurations:

  1. MiKTeX in Windows
  2. BibTeX style file aipauth4-1.bst
  3. BibTeX information are directly from the inspire site
  4. I used the following in my LaTeX file head section:

  5. I use the following to call invoke the BibTeX style file

I would like to know how to get the style file to work?


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Reference List

APS style requires reference lists to be arranged in alphabetical order. In-text citations consist only of the numbers in parentheses. Every reference in the reference list must be cited somewhere in the article, and every reference cited in the article must be present in the reference list. If there is a discrepancy, query the author.

See also:


Authors' names are capitalized. The surname comes first, then first and middle initials, which are bumped with no periods.

For three or more authors, use "and" and the series comma. For two authors, use "and" and no comma.


The article title is roman, first word capitalized.

If a colon is used in the title, the word after the colon is lowercase.

If the reference is not from an APS journal, leave the title as written unless there are obvious misspellings. Do not change spelled-out Greek letters. Leave British spelling for non-US publications. However, if the reference is from an APS journal, double-check any "suspicious-looking" title.

Italicize genus and species names.

Journal Name

The journal name is italicized and abbreviated as per Medline. No periods are used. Acronyms in journal titles are closed up, all-caps, with no periods.

FEBS Proc Meet Phys Chem Biol

Ann NY Acad Sci


If the journal is divided into different series identified with a letter, the entire name of the journal, including the series title, must be used.


Comp Biochem Physiol A


Comp Biochem Physiol A Comp Physiol

Some journals publish supplements that are incorporated into the name of the journal; see Journals with Supplements for more details.

See also the list of Common Journal Name Misabbreviations.

Volume, Issue, Page Number

All AJP volume numbers up to 231 include only the title Am J Physiol. All AJP volume numbers from 232 (1977) on must include the full journal name with section, volume number, and appropriate letter before both page numbers.

Am J Physiol 231: 275-282, 1976.

Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 232: H231-H235, 1977.

The volume number directly follows the journal title and is roman. No issue or part numbers are used, even if provided by the author.


J Biol Chem 244 (2): 1267-1271, 1988.
J Biol Chem 506 (Pt 3): 314-322, 2000.


J Biol Chem 244: 1267-1271, 1988.
J Biol Chem 506: 314-322, 2000.

Check all APS journal volume years for accuracy (see Year-Volume Tables). 

Check page ranges for completeness and order. Do not "abbreviate" page numbers; change 131-8 to 131-138. If the range is unclear, query author.

DOI Numbers

If an article has a DOI number associated with it, the number should come at the end of the reference, separated by a semicolon.

If the reference is an APS article that was previously published in Articles in PresS, then the date of first publication (in AiPS) should follow the year of publication; followed by a semicolon; followed by the DOI number.

if previously published in AiPS

Hasan AAK, Warnock M, Nieman M, Srikanth S, Mahdi F, Krishnan R, Tulinsky A, and Schmaier AH. Mechanisms of Arg-Pro-Pro-Gly-Phe inhibition of thrombin. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 285: H183-H193, 2003. First published February 21, 2003; 10.1152/ajpheart.00490.2002.

if NOT previously published in AiPS

Hasan AAK, Warnock M, Nieman M, Srikanth S, Mahdi F, Krishnan R, Tulinsky A, and Schmaier AH. Mechanisms of Arg-Pro-Pro-Gly-Phe inhibition of thrombin. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 285: H183-H193, 2003; 10.1152/ajpheart.00490.2002.

Usually, the DOI number and first-published date are only included in the article's citation header and the first line of the abstract. When copyediting the reference list, verify this information and format correctly if the author supplies it. If the DOI number is not supplied by the author, and the reference is otherwise correct, do not add it in the reference list. 

Special Cases

Journal policy does not permit "submitted" references. If a reference ends with "submitted," "in preparation," or "work in progress," delete and query the author for complete information. If the article is not yet accepted for publication, it must be removed from the reference list and quoted in text as authored "unpublished observations" or "personal communication."

Abstracts cited in the reference list must be labeled as such. The word "Abstract" must be initial-cap, in parentheses, and placed at the end of the title inside the ending period. If the article is only one page long and is not labeled as an abstract, query the author.

Brunner MJ, Sussman MS, Greene AS, Kallman CH, and Shoukas AA. Carotid sinus baroreceptor reflex control of respiration (Abstract). J Appl Physiol...

Query author to update references that are "in press." In text, use the current year for the publication date (if the author has not supplied a year) and query author to check.

If the reference is a book and the entire book is not cited, check for a chapter title. If there is no chapter title, leave as provided by the author.

Book references must also include name and location of publisher and year of publication (check the list of publisher locations); query if not present. Delete the word "Press" from publisher's name unless it is a university press.

References for meetings and conferences must include location; query if not present.

References for theses and dissertations must include the name and location of the institution; query if not present.

For more help on formatting different types of references, see the following resources:


Alphabetize by first author on a letter-by-letter basis. If the first author is the same for two or more entries, alphabetize by the second author, then the third, etc. (Be careful not to combine refs by authors with the same last name but different initials.) If all authors are exactly the same for two or more entries, list chronologically according to the date of publication.

When the first author's name begins with a prefix such as VAN, VON, or DEN, do not reorder references if the author alphabetized according to second name; e.g., VAN ZUYLEN is listed under Z.

Jr, II, and III go after the author's initials, with no commas or periods.

Johnson MJ, Richards KH Jr, Smith CA III, and Fife B.

If a reference must be removed from or inserted into the list at proof stage, do not reorder the references unless the first five or the last five references are changed.

If a reference is inserted between two consecutive references, designate the new reference with a lowercase letter bumped to the number (e.g., if a reference is inserted between 11 and 12, the new reference is numbered 11a).

Citing References in Text and in the Abstract

References in text must refer to a specific, numbered reference in the reference list. If only the author names are given, determine what reference number they refer to or query the author. 

Reference numbers are placed in parentheses and separated with a comma and a space. Three or more consecutive reference numbers may be listed as a range separated by a dash.

...consistent with previous reports (23).

...consistent with previous reports (23, 25).

...consistent with previous reports (23-29).

...consistent with previous reports (1, 4, 23-29, 68).

If an author's name is specified in text, change "and colleagues" to "et al.", unless referring to 2 or more references with the same primary author but different contributing authors.


Smith et al. (23)


Smith et al. (23, 25) 

...unless all contributing articles have identical authors, in which case

Smith and colleagues (23, 25)

Delete year of publication, if provided.


The Journal of Neurophysiology does not use a numbered reference list. References are listed in alphabetical order and called out in text by the authors' last names and year of publication. If the references has two authors, both names are listed, separated by the word 'and'; if three or more authors are listed use the first author's name followed by 'et al.'

(Houk 1997)

(Hikosaka and Wurtz 1983)

(Hikosaka et al. 1989)

(Barbas et al. 1991; Kievit and Kuypers 1977; Ray and Price 1993) 

If two references with the same first author and the same year of publication would result in identical callouts in text, a Roman, lowercase letter must be appended to the year of publication, both in text and in the reference list.

in text

(Koshiya and Smith 1999a)

(Koshiya and Smith 1999a,b)

in the reference list

Koshiya N, and Smith JC. Neuronal pacemaker for breathing visualized in vitro. Nature 400: 360-363, 1999a.

Koshiya N, and Smith JC. Subthreshold-activating persistent sodium conductance (gNaP) in inspiratory neurons of the pre-B�tzinger complex in vitro. Soc Neurosci Abstr 25: 696, 1999b.

J Neurophysiol 88: 2242-2250, 2002

References to "unpublished observations" or "unpublished data" may be used in text, including authors' names and intials, but may not be listed in the reference list. This applies to all "submitted" papers still in peer review.

...(Brown JS, Smith MD, and Franzio F, unpublished observations).

References may be cited in the abstract, but not by number. If a reference is cited, you must include the entire author list with initials, the journal name in italics, the volume, the page numbers, and the year (the article title is omitted for the sake of brevity.) Query author if the information is not complete.

(Jones DG, Smith WM, and Johnson JB. J Exp Biol 79: 112-117, 1992)

Using the Toolkit

The code at the beginning of the reference list depends on how many entries are in the reference list.
  • �ref1� for lists with  less than 10 items;
  • �ref2� for lists with at least 10 but  less than 100 items;
  • �ref3� for lists with 100 or more items

The numbers tell the printer how far to indent the list so that all the numbers line up on the right-hand digit.

Each reference consists of three discrete paragraphs, one for each coded element in the reference. Each paragraph should begin with its own code: �rf� to introduce the reference number; �a� to introduce the author list; and �t� to introduce the remainder of the reference.

�a�Steinberg SF, Goldberg M, and Rybin VO.
�t�Characterization of vascular neuropeptie Y receptors. Br J Pharmacol 105: 45-50, 1992.

Do not put a period after the reference number.

In a book reference wherein the entire book is cited (i.e., no chapter title), it is acceptable to leave out the �t� code.

�a�Tolkien, JRR. The Fellowship of the Ring. New York: Ballantine, 1981.

In proof, the author list will be boldface; however, this is done automatically by the printer. Do not boldface the author list when editing.


In Physiological Reviews, author names in the reference list are smallcap, with fully capitalized first letters and initials, and not boldface. For 2 or more authors, the word "and" should be smallcap.

YOUNG B, OTTO T, FOX G, AND EICHENBAUM H. Memory representation in the parahippocampal region. J Neurophysiol 17: 5183-5195, 1997.

Two codes that were once used in the old (XyWrite) coding style are the �jnl� code, placed before the journal name, and the �iss� code, placed before the issue number. These codes are no longer necessary and should not be used since they can cause problems with the APS Toolkit.

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last edited 07/10/03

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