Research Articles and Research Resources

Published Research Articles or Research Resources can be short (6 to 8 pages with 2 to 4 figures) or long (9 to 11 pages with 5 to 8 figures). Both short and long formats include an Abstract and should be structured as follows: Introduction, Results, Discussion, and Materials and Methods. Supplementary Materials are permitted but should be limited to information that is not essential to the understanding and evaluation of the research presented in the paper. For a short format article, the manuscript may be 3000 to 5000 words with 2 to 4 figures. For longer format articles, a general guideline is 5 to 8 figures and 5000 to 7000 words. Authors should refer to the Information for Authors for general information about manuscript preparation and the journal's policies. The word count and number of figures are guidelines only. Submitted manuscripts should be as complete as possible and the editors will assist authors in shortening manuscripts if accepted.


Science Signaling publishes leading research papers related to the broad topic of regulatory biology and cellular signal transduction. Appropriate studies range from molecular analysis to systems analysis of cellular and organismal regulatory biology. Studies may investigate individual signaling proteins, intracellular signal transduction cascades, communication and regulation between cells, or regulatory events related to organismal physiology. Appropriate topics include any analysis of the mechanisms by which cellular and organismal functions are regulated in response to external or internal cues in cultured cells, model organisms, or prokaryotic cells. The subject matter thus crosses the boundaries of traditional research areas, such as Cancer Biology, Cell Cycle Regulation, Cell Biology, Biochemistry, Development, Microbiology, Molecular Biology, Immunology, Neuroscience, Physiology and Medicine, Pharmacology, and Plant Biology. Papers should substantially refine current understanding of important signaling processes with priority given to those papers that provide new concepts and new understanding of biological regulation that is physiologically relevant and papers that are likely to be relevant to multiple biological systems or applicable in a diverse range of investigations.

The goal is to publish papers that expand our knowledge of important signaling processes and mechanisms of biological regulation. Instead of fitting papers into "immunology" or "neuroscience" pigeon holes, for example, we see the the Research Articles and Research Resources as immunology- or neuroscience-based signaling papers that are of interest not only to the immunologist or neuroscientist, but also to the broader community of biological scientists. Because the audience is broad and diverse, papers should be presented so that they are accessible to those outside the direct area of study.

Given the increasing blurred lines between the classical scientific disciplines, there is a need for a journal that can convey important findings between research groups with different backgrounds. Science Signaling seeks to fulfill this role, bridging the disciplines spanned by biological scientists. Science Signaling is interested in studies that use computational approaches to explore a biologically important question. Generally, studies that include computational models of regulatory events must not only include a model but use that model to make experimentally tested predictions or to provide unique insights that could not be gained from the experimental results alone. Most purely theoretical studies are not competitive.

Research Articles present important insights into cellular or organismal regulation and report hypothesis-driven research. Research Resources may be submitted directly or selected from the Research Article submissions on the basis of editorial evaluation and input from the Board of Reviewing Editors. Research Resources 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. Research Resources are expected to lead to important and substantial advances in understanding regulatory phenomenon in subsequent studies.

Review Process

The review process for papers submitted directly to Science Signaling is highly selective. Papers are selected for publication in Science Signaling on the basis of their importance and broad interest to scientists engaged in the general area of regulatory biology as determined by the editors in consultation with the Board of Reviewing Editors and in-depth reviewers of papers. Papers describing further examples of known principles of biological signal transduction or regulatory biology will be less favorably evaluated. For papers describing mathematical modeling of signaling events or networks, those that are closely aligned with experimental analysis and that use models to generate predictions that are tested experimentally will be favored.

Whereas Science seeks to present papers of particularly broad interest across the greater scientific community, Science Signaling will seek out papers that have strong interest and broad impact in the more limited context of understanding mechanisms of cellular and physiological regulation.

Authors may choose to have a manuscript considered at and rejected from Science, Science Translational Medicine, or Science Immunology transferred to Science Signaling.

Editor's Summaries

Research Articles and Research Resources are accompanied by short summaries written by the Science Signaling staff editors.