Specialising in Peer-Review and Ethics

Di-Ep Biomedical Editorial Services Ltd strives to improve the reporting quality of published research papers.

Checklists have been developed for a number of study designs, including randomized controlled trials (CONSORT), systematic reviews (PRISMA), observational studies (STROBE), diagnostic accuracy studies (STARD) and qualitative studies (COREQ, RATS).

We recommend authors refer to the EQUATOR Network website for further information on the available reporting guidelines for health research, and the MIBBI Portal for prescriptive checklists for reporting biological and biomedical research where applicable. Authors are requested to make use of these when drafting their manuscript and peer reviewers will also be asked to refer to these checklists when evaluating these studies.

Guidelines for authors

Due to the increase in submissions and problems with the submission format, the editorial office has put together a brief overview for authors.

The journals are interested in original papers which are novel and carry important scientific information in the submitted journal field.

Sleep and Breathing - Case Reports will no longer be accepted.

Format is important for the journals. The instructions for authors must be followed.

Duplicate submissions: Further advice regarding "what is a duplicate submission" can be found on the following website. The website discusses in detail plagiarism and ethical writing from the Office of Research Integrity. The editorial office would like to thank Dr. Roig for allowing the use of this link on the editorial office web site.


The complete instructions for each journal can be found on the following web sites:

Acta Neurochirurgica

Documenta Ophthalmologica

Graefe’s Archive for Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology

Sleep and Breathing

Health Policy and Planning

A short breakdown and explanation of what should appear where follows.

All pages should be consecutively numbered.

Title Page

The first page of the manuscript is the title page.

The title page should consist of the following information

    The title of the paper

    The name of all authors

    Information on Financial Support (if any)

    Details of the corresponding author: Full Name, Snail-mail address, Telephone, Fax number and e-mail address

 Conflict of Interest Statement-may be placed on the title page or at the end of the manuscript prior to the references.

    Presentation at a conference: eg: DOG, ARVO, EVER etc., (if any)

    Clinical Trial registration number (if required)

    Number the page-the title page will be page #1

Case reports

Acta Neurochirurgica- an abstract in a single paragraph maximum of 100 words.

Documenta Ophthalmologica- The abstract should contain between 100-150 words.

Regular Papers:

Acta Neurochirugica, Documenta Ophthalmologica ,Sleep and Breathing -The abstract should contain up to 250 words.

Health Policy and Planning-Word limit is 300 words.

Graefe’s Archive for Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology:-Word Limit is 350 words.

 The abstract should answer the following questions and be divided as below:

    Background – Why was the study carried out/Why is this case report so special

    Methods – What did the research group do?

    Results – What did the research group find?

    Conclusions- What might this research mean?

    Number the page-the abstract page will be page#2


If possible try to keep this section short, while mentioning the following points:

    Explain why your research group commenced with the study.

    Give a systematic review

    The need for the study

    Ensure that the importance of the study is highlighted.

Material and Methods

This is the section where your statistics should appear.

Do not forget that for chemicals or equipment the name and location should be given in parentheses.

    Describe how the participants/eyes/cells in your study were selected and excluded.

    Do not describe standard methods in detail-use references


The best way to write a good result section is to follow the four golden rules:

    Stick to what is relevant

    Let the text tell the story

    Let the tables give the evidence

    Let the figures highlight and illustrate the new novel information of the paper


This section of the paper is not that easy to write. You will need to put quite a lot of thought into it and discuss in your own words the following:

    Discuss the principal finding

    Discuss the strengths and weakness of the study comparing it with other studies with different results.

    Discuss the possible impact of the study and implications for clinicians

    Discuss the unanswered questions and the possibility of future research.


This section is where one or more of the following will be mentioned:

    An individual who provided purely technical help.

    An individual who helped with editing/proofreading/ writing

    A department chair who provided only general support.

    Financial and material support should also be acknowledged.

Groups of persons who have contributed materially to the paper but whose contributions do not justify authorship may be listed under a heading such as "clinical investigators" or "participating investigators," and their function or contribution should be described - for example, "served as scientific advisors," "critically reviewed the study proposal," "collected data," or "provided and cared for study patients."

For additional information visit the following web site: http://www.icmje.org


Acta Neurochirurgica-the references need to appear in alphabetical order and numbered consecutively.

References should be ALPHABETICALLY arranged A,B,C...

Personal communications should only be mentioned in the text. Citations in the text should be identified by numbers in square brackets, and the list of references at the end of the paper should be both alphabetized under the first author's name and numbered. References by the same author or team of authors should be listed in chronological order.

The list of References should only include works that are cited in the text and have been previously published or accepted for publication. Personal communications should only be mentioned in the text. Papers which have been accepted for publication but not yet published should be included in the list of references with the name of the journal and the Digital Object Identifier (DOI) code of the cited literature. The author is responsible for the accuracy of the references.

     The reference list must be alphabetically arranged

    Citations in the text should be identified with numbers in square brackets [1]

    The reference list should be both alphabetical and chronological.


Reference list:

    Epstein D, Kirchhof B (2005) The delicate topic of authorship. Graefe’s Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol 243:1-2

    Kirchhof B, Epstein D (2003) Manuscript submission and processing:the new electronic pathway. Graefe’s Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol 241: 965

    Krieglstein G.K, Epstein D (2003) The 2002 balance of Graefe’s Archive. Graefes’s Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol 241: 167

Important points regarding the referencing within the text:

Do not write the name of the authors i.e: (Kirchhof B et al.,) but use square brackets [2]. If you wish to cite more than more reference: [1,2,3]

Graefe's Archive for Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology, Documenta Ophthalmologica, Sleep and Breathing – the references should be listed in the order they appear.




Reference citations in the text should be identified by numbers in square brackets. Some examples:

1. Negotiation research spans many disciplines [3].

2. This result was later contradicted by Becker and Seligman [5].

3. This effect has been widely studied [1-3, 7].

Reference list

The list of references should only include works that are cited in the text and that have been published or accepted for publication. Personal communications and unpublished works should only be mentioned in the text. Do not use footnotes or endnotes as a substitute for a reference list.

The entries in the list should be numbered consecutively.

        Journal article

Gamelin FX, Baquet G, Berthoin S, Thevenet D, Nourry C, Nottin S, Bosquet L (2009) Effect of high intensity intermittent training on heart rate variability in prepubescent children. Eur J Appl Physiol 105:731-738. doi: 10.1007/s00421-008-0955-8

Ideally, the names of all authors should be provided, but the usage of “et al” in long author lists will also be accepted:

Smith J, Jones M Jr, Houghton L et al (1999) Future of health insurance. N Engl J Med 965:325–329

        Article by DOI

Slifka MK, Whitton JL (2000) Clinical implications of dysregulated cytokine production. J Mol Med. doi:10.1007/s001090000086


South J, Blass B (2001) The future of modern genomics. Blackwell, London

        Book chapter

Brown B, Aaron M (2001) The politics of nature. In: Smith J (ed) The rise of modern genomics, 3rd edn. Wiley, New York, pp 230-257

        Online document

Cartwright J (2007) Big stars have weather too. IOP Publishing PhysicsWeb. http://physicsweb.org/articles/news/11/6/16/1. Accessed 26 June 2007



Trent JW (1975) Experimental acute renal failure. Dissertation, University of California

Always use the standard abbreviation of a journal’s name according to the ISSN List of Title Word Abbreviations, see


For authors using EndNote, Springer provides an output style that supports the formatting of in-text citations and reference list.

        EndNote style (zip, 2 kB)

Authors preparing their manuscript in LaTeX can use the bibtex file spbasic.bst which is included in Springer’s LaTeX macro package.


Health Policy and Planning

References must follow the Harvard system and must be cited thus:

Baker and Watts (1993) found...

In an earlier study (Baker and Watts 1993), it...

Where works by more than two authors are cited, only the first author is named followed by 'et al.' and the year. The reference list must be typed double-spaced in alphabetical order and include the full title of both paper (or chapter) and journal (or book), thus:

Baker S, Watts P. 1993. Paper/chapter title in normal script. Journal/book title in italics Volume number in bold: page numbers.

Baker S, Watts P. 1993. Chapter title in normal script. In: Smith B (ed). Book title in italics. 2nd edn. Place of publication: Publisher's name, page numbers.

Up to five authors should be cited. If there are more, cite the first three authors and follow with 'et al.', e.g.:

Baker S, Watts P, Smith B et al. 1993. Paper title in normal script. Paper presented at meeting/conference title, place, date. Unpublished document

There are software programmes available which can help in formatting the references accordingly:

Zotero: is a free, easy-to-use Firefox extension to help you collect, manage, and cite your research sources. It lives right where you work — in the web browser itself see. http://www.zotero.org/

Jabref Reference manager: http://jabref.sourceforge.net/ (also free but the installation may be more complicated than the previous one).


BibTeX is free, but is only usable with LaTeX. That said, LaTeX is free too, and while it is a learning curve, it's the only practical way of writing maths-heavy manuscripts.


OSalt.com is a useful resource for locating open-source software, while download.com is useful for paid for and free (closed source) items. In this case, a quick search of download.com for 'EndNote' highlighted Scholar's Aid Lite (version 4), a free, less feature-rich version of the Scholar's Aid package. It is available from http://www.scholarsaid.com/aboutsafree.html or on download.com


Endnote: www.endnote.com


In addition to the preinstalled output styles, users of EndNote can download additional journal styles via the software vendor’s website (www.endnote.com). There is, for instance, an ens-file for Graefes,DOOP and Sleep and Breathing available at http://endnote.com/support/enstyledetail.asp?SORT=0&PAGE=1&METH=0&DISC=none&JOUR=ophthalmology&BSRT=none&FF1=none&FF2=none&FF3=none&CITE=none&DKEY=317201070010RAA



Since these output styles are aggregated by the software vendor or possibly users, there is no guarantee that they work as expected. Thus, authors should make sure that the end result conforms to the journal’s requirements for the reference list.

Reference Manager


Additional advice can be found on the "Instructions" page.