Science Signaling: Information for Authors

Categories of Manuscripts

Science Signaling is a weekly journal that publishes original material pertaining to the broad field of signal transduction in physiology and disease. Science Signaling publishes original Research Articles, Research Resources, Focuses, Perspectives, and Reviews. Of these, most  Focuses, Perspectives and Reviews are generally solicited by the editors. We are in the process of updating the detailed instructions for each type of manuscript.

Research Articles are expected to present a major advance in regulatory biology. Study may be at the level of intracellular signaling, intercellular signaling, organismal signaling and regulation, or systems level analysis of regulatory biology. They should include an abstract and be structured as follows: Introduction, Results, Discussion, and Materials and Methods. Supplementary Material is permitted but should be limited to information that is not essential to the understanding and evaluation of the research presented in the paper. Details about the scope and review process are available.

Research Resources are selected from the Research Article submissions and describe nonhypothesis-driven research, including the presentation of new validated tools or techniques or validated databases or data sets relevant to cellular or organismal regulatory biology. See the Research Resource help page for more information.

Perspectives emphasize the opinions or viewpoints of their authors. More limited in scope than Reviews, they may focus on a set of recently published papers or on methods, books, or policy matters. The editors usually do not consider unsolicited Perspectives.

A Focus is a short commentary article related to a paper published in the same issue of Science Signaling. Focuses are always solicited by the editors.

Reviews address timely topics of broad interest and of relevance to signal transduction or regulatory biology. Unlike conventional reviews, they may be updated by their authors as developments warrant. Reviews are accompanied by 'glosses' — textbook-level summaries for readers who seek a brief introduction to the topic. Reviews should provide new insights as well as summarize the information currently available. The best reviews reflect the unique viewpoint of the author and show how new findings alter current thinking about major issues in a particular field. Reviews are evaluated by peer review for scholarship, accuracy, clarity, and effectiveness of presentation. Reviews may provide comprehensive coverage of a topic or may be more tightly focused in the form of a mini-review.

Protocols provide step-by-step instructions and notes on the techniques of signal transduction research - information often only hinted at in 'Materials and Methods' sections. Science Signaling no longer publishes Protocols.

Detailed Instructions for Authors

General Information Regarding Manuscript Preparation

Symbols, abbreviations, and acronyms should be defined the first time they are used.

Units of measure should be given in SI units. If measurements were made in English units, give metric equivalents.

References and notes are numbered in the order in which they are cited, first through the text and the references, then through the table and figure legends. List a reference only one time. Any references to in-press manuscripts or personal communications should be given a number in the text and placed, in correct sequence, in the references and notes. Such references should not, however, be used to support claims or conclusions. Journal article references should be complete, including the complete list of authors, the full titles, and the inclusive pagination. Detailed information is provided in the detailed instructions for authors for each type of manuscript.

Figures and tables may be included with any type of manuscript. All figures must be called out within the text. Figures should be numbered in the order of their citation in the text. Details about figure and table preparation are included in the detailed instructions for authors, as they vary by manuscript type.

Figure Legends should be included in the text file immediately after the body of the text and preceding the references. Nomenclature, abbreviations, symbols, and units used in a figure should match those used in the text. The figure title should be given as the first line of the legend.

Tables should supplement, not duplicate, the text. They should be numbered in the order of their citation in the text. The first sentence of the legend should be a brief descriptive title. Each vertical column of a table should have a heading and if appropriate include the unit of measure in parentheses. Units should not change within a column. Centered headings of the body of the table can be used to break the entries into groups. Footnotes should contain information relevant to specific entries or parts of the table.

Supplementary Materials may include digital resources, large data sets, or video or audio files. These should be restricted to information that are either not essential to understanding and evaluating the article or are not presentable in a printable format. All supplementary materials should be accompanied by a brief text description, similar to a caption. Details about preferred file formats and file sizes are included in the detailed instructions for authors.

Policies: Submission Requirements and Conditions of Acceptance

To meet its responsibility to readers and to the public to provide clear and unbiased scientific results and analyses, AAAS requires that all manuscripts published in Science Signaling are accompanied by clear disclosures from all authors of the nature and level of their contribution to the article, their understanding regarding the obligation to share data and materials, and any affiliations, funding sources, or financial holdings that might raise questions about possible sources of bias. Before manuscript acceptance, therefore, authors will be asked to sign an authorship and conflict of interest form. Copies of the forms are available from the Science editorial policies page.

The policies for publication of original research in Science Signaling follows those for publication of research in Science (see the details on the Science editorial policies page). These are briefly described here with reference to the appropriate pages on the Science instructions for authors.

Authorship All authors must agree to be so listed and must have seen and approved the manuscript, its content, and its submission to Science Signaling. Any changes in authorship must be approved in writing by all of the original authors. Submission of a paper that has not been approved by all authors will result in immediate rejection without appeal.

Prior publication Science Signaling will not consider any paper or component of a paper that has been published or is under consideration elsewhere. Deposition of manuscripts on preprint servers is not considered prior publication and does not compromise the originality of the paper. Please contact the editors with questions regarding this policy.

Human studies Informed consent must have been obtained for studies on humans after the nature and possible consequences of the studies were explained. All research on humans must have approval from the author's Institutional Review Board (IRB) or equivalent body.

Animal care Care of experimental animals must be in accordance with the authors’ institutional guidelines.

Related papers Copies of papers submitted to other journals by any of the authors that relate to a research article submitted to Science Signaling must be included with the submission.

Unpublished data and personal communications Citations to unpublished data and personal communications cannot be used to support claims in the paper.

Funding and conflict of interest Authors must agree to disclose all affiliations, funding sources, and financial or management relationships, including those that could be perceived as potential sources of bias.

Data deposition Before publication, large data sets, including microarray data, RNA-Seq data, protein or DNA sequences, and atomic coordinates and structure factors for macromolecular or chemical structures must be deposited in an approved database, an accession number must be included in the published paper, and the deposited information must be released at the time of publication. Electron micrograph maps must also be deposited.

License Authors retain copyright but must agree to grant to Science Signaling an exclusive license to publish the paper in print and online.

Data availability After publication, all data necessary to understand and assess the conclusions of the manuscript must be available to any reader of Science Signaling. The need for material transfer agreements (MTAs) must be disclosed.

Access policies After publication, authors may post the accepted version of the paper on the author’s personal Web site and are provided one referrer link that can be posted on a personal or institutional Web page, through which users can freely access the published paper on the Science Signaling site. Science Signaling follows Science policies and allows deposition of the "accepted version" of peer-reviewed content (Research Articles, Research Resources, Reviews, and Protocols) into the NIH PubMed Central or other PMC International repository 6 months after publication, in accord with the requirements of the funders NIH and Wellcome Trust, provided that a link to the final version published in Science Signaling is included. The "accepted version" is the version of the paper accepted for publication after changes resulting from peer review, but before editing by Science Signaling copyediting staff, image quality control, and production of the final PDF. No other types of content may be submitted. Research Articles and Research Resources will be freely accessible at Science Signaling 12 months after publication.

Materials sharing After publication, all reasonable requests for materials must be fulfilled. Before acceptance, Science Signaling must be informed of any restrictions on sharing of materials [Material Transfer Agreements (MTAs), for example]. Unreasonable restrictions may preclude publication.

Embargo policy The paper will remain a privileged document and will not be released to the press or the public before publication. Questions should be referred to the AAAS Office of Public Programs (202-326-6440).

Electronic Submission

Authors of research content can submit directly through the submission site:

Authors of invited submissions (Perspectives, Focuses, or Reviews) will be sent information about online submission by the Science Signaling editor.

All content should be submitted online at Authors of invited content, such as Perspectives, Focus, or Reviews, who have received a link from their editor should use the link provided. Authors of invited resubmissions of Research Articles or Research Resource must use the link provided in the email from the editor.

Detailed information about acceptable file formats is included in the detailed instructions for authors of each type of manuscript.

The Science Signaling Editors are no longer accepting presubmission inquiries. Rather, they encourage authors to submit complete manuscripts through our online submission site at It will then undergo the usual rapid screening by the editors and Board of Reviewing Editors, followed by external review if considered suitable. If your paper is not appropriate for the journal, you will hear back from the Science Signaling Editors quickly.