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For Authors

To check on the status of your submission, please visit the BMEF (BME Frontiers) manuscript submissions site.

For general guidance on using the manuscript submission system, please read the tutorials for Authors, Editors, and Reviewers. For questions on specific functionality, explore the Editorial Manager video library.

BMEF is committed to thorough and efficient evaluation of submitted manuscripts. All submissions to BMEF are assessed by our editorial office for language, accuracy, ethics and whether it falls within journal scope. BMEF establishes rigor early in the review process, and warranted rejections only come from individuals who have read the manuscript.

Categories of Manuscripts

The journal BMEF considers submissions for original research articles, review articles, rapid reports, perspectives, and editorials. Prior to submission, each author should review and be prepared to fulfill the submission requirements outlined in the Publication Ethics page and comply with following limitations.

Research articles present novel research study of outstanding significance in the field of biomedical engineering. Submissions must include a structured abstract (maximum of 250 words), and separate sections for the introduction, results, discussion, and materials and methods. Authors may include up to nine data elements (with a maximum of six figures and three tables) and a maximum of 40 references. Total length should be less than 5,000 words, excluding the abstract, materials and methods, and references. Supplementary materials should be limited to information that is not essential for the general understanding of the research presented in the main text and can include data sets, figures, tables, videos, or audio files. Authors are encouraged to use the research article templates in Word or LaTex.

Structured Abstract:

  • Objective: An opening sentence that states the objective of the research
  • Impact Statement: Brief description about the novelty and impact of the research
  • Introduction: Enough background information to give context to the study
  • Methods: A brief statement of the primary methods used by the study
  • Results: A brief statement of primary results
  • Conclusion: A short concluding sentence of the main take-home point(s) of the study

Review articles describe and synthesize recent developments of significance in biomedical engineering and highlight future directions. Review must include an abstract, an introduction that outlines the main theme, brief subheadings, and include a section describing important unresolved questions. Authors may include up to 10 figures and/or six tables (a maximum of 16 display items) and up to 120 references. Most Reviews are less than 8,000 words, although longer manuscripts are considered. Most Reviews are currently solicited by the editors. Author-initiated submissions require pre-approval by the editorial office. Contact BMEF to inquire about submitting an unsolicited Review.

Rapid reports present ground-breaking developments or discoveries in the field of biomedical engineering. Submissions must include a short abstract (maximums of 150 words), 10 references or fewer, and two data elements (any combination of figures or tables). Manuscript should be divided into an introduction, a combined results and discussion section, and materials and methods. Total length should be less than 1,000 words excluding the abstract, materials and methods, and references. BMEF encourages junior scientists to contribute their exciting validated short advances for consideration as a Rapid Report. Authors are encouraged to use the rapid report templates in Word or LaTex.

Perspectives highlight recent exciting research but do not primarily discuss the author's own work. Most provide context for the findings within a field or explain potential interdisciplinary importance. These short pieces (up to 1,000 words plus one figure or table or at EiC’s discretion for special cases) are meant to express a personal viewpoint. With rare exceptions, Perspectives should have no more than two authors.

Editorials are short, invited opinion pieces that discuss an issue of immediate importance to the research community. Editorials should have fewer than 1,000 words total, no abstract, a minimal number of references (no more than five) and no figures or tables. Editorials are only solicited by the editors.

    Preparation of Manuscripts

    English Language Editing Services

    Interested in English language assistance prior to submission? The Science Partner Journals publishing team has evaluated the work of the companies listed on the SPJ Author Services page and found their services to be effective for editing scientific English language in manuscripts prior to submission.

    Requirements for All Types of Manuscripts:

    • Provide a complete title with a maximum of 100 characters, including spaces
    • Provide full names of all authors, including initials (example, Joseph M. Author) and suffixes (example, Jane D. Scientist, Jr.)
    • Designate author affiliations with superscripted numbers
    • Designate corresponding author(s) with an asterisk; provide email address(es) for corresponding author(s)
    • Provide 6-10 keywords
    • Cite figures and tables in the order in which they appear
    • Number all figures and tables and supplementary materials in order of mention in the text
    • Provide an acknowledgment section that includes the following elements: general acknowledgments (if necessary), author contributions, funding sources, competing interests statement, data availability statement
    • Number references within the text consecutively in the order of first appearance, for example Liu et al. [1].
    • Cite references in the reference section using a format that includes all authors (do not use et al.), article title, journal title, year, and article identifying information, such as volume and page or article identifier or DOI
    • Do not use footnotes
    • Format text with 1.5 line spacing or double spacing and use line numbers

    Research Manuscripts (Research Articles and Rapid Reports):

    Reporting Guidelines

    Please follow published standard reporting guidelines for the study discipline. Many of these guidelines can be found at the EQUATOR website.

    It is recommended that in the Materials and Methods, include a diagram or flowchart of the entire experimental design that illustrates the most significant elements: materials, treatments, measurements, data collection, methods of data analysis.

    In the Materials and Methods, describe statistical methods with enough detail to enable a knowledgeable reader with access to the original data to verify the results. In the appropriate figure legend or table, include the values for N, P, and the specific statistical test performed for the data shown.

    For studies involving animals or human subjects, include in the Materials and Methods a statement that the study was approved by the appropriate institutional review boards(s). For human studies, include a statement that informed consent was obtained before the study. Research involving human subjects, human material, or human data must have been performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki and must have been approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) or an equivalent ethics committee. Research involving animals must be performed in accordance with the NIH Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals or the equivalent. The manuscript must include a statement indicating that research was approved and performed according to the required guidelines. The Materials and Methods must include the precise genotype, strain, source, number of backcrosses, sex, and age of animals. Littermate controls should generally be used for genetically modified animals and to avoid confounding effects of inbred strain background. Justification for other control animals should be included in the manuscript.

    Data Presentation Guidelines

    The editors may ask authors of manuscripts returned for revision to provide additional documentation regarding the primary data.

    To ensure reproducibility, data obtained from single experiments are generally not permitted. However, Rapid Reports may present individual case studies or other validated single-observation studies.

    Figures or panels within figures assembled from multiple photographs or images must indicate the separate parts with lines between them. Figure legends should specify if assembled images are from the same experiment or different experiments.

    Linear adjustment of contrast, brightness or color must be applied to an entire image or plate equally. Nonlinear adjustments are typically not allowed. If done, they must be specified in the figure legend.

    Selective enhancement or alteration of one part of an image to “beautify” the data is not permitted.

    Microscopy images must include scale bars.

      Figure, Table, & Supplementary Material Guidelines

      Creating Your Figures

      It is best to create your figures as vector-based files such as those produced by Adobe Illustrator. Vector-based file formats include EPS and AI files. Some PDFs are vector-based, depending on the program used to create them. Vector-based files provide the maximum flexibility for sizing figures, especially text elements, without losing resolution. High-resolution files are not required for initial submission, but these are required for submission of revised manuscripts and for publication. At initial submission, high-resolution figure files can be saved at a lower resolution to minimize file size.

      For submission of revised manuscripts, each figure or image must be in a separate editable file format. Images may be submitted as .eps, PostScript, Word, .ps, .ai, Excel, PowerPoint, .pdf, .emf, .wmf, FreeHand, CorelDraw, .pzf, .fig, .obj, and .cdx..

      Figure Layout and Scaling

      In laying out information in a figure, the objective is to maximize the space given to presentation of the data. Avoid wasted white space and clutter.

      Please follow these guidelines for your figures:

      • The figure’s title should be at the beginning of the figure legend, not within the figure itself.
      • Include the figure’s identifying number (for example, “Figure 1”) on the same manuscript page that includes the figure.
      • Keys to symbols, if needed, should be kept as simple as possible. Details can be put into the figure legend.
      • Use solid symbols for plotting data if possible (unless data overlap or there are multiple symbols). At final size in the figure in the published PDF, symbol sizes should be a minimum of 6 points and line widths should be a minimum of 0.5 points.
      • Panels should be set close to each other.
      • Common axis labels should not be repeated.
      • Scales or axes should not extend beyond the range of the data plotted.
      • All microscopic images should include scale bars, with their values shown either with the bar or in the figure legend.
      • Do not use minor tick marks in scales or grid lines.
      • Avoid using y-axis labels on the right that repeat those on the left.

      Color-mix and Contrast Considerations

      • Avoid using red and green together. Color-blind individuals will not be able to read the figure.
      • Do not use colors that are close to each other in hue to identify different parts of a figure.
      • Avoid using grayscale.
      • Use white type and scale bars over darker areas of images.

      Typefaces and Labels

      Please observe the following guidelines for labels on graphs and figures:

      • Use a serif font whenever possible.
      • Simple solid or open symbols reduce well.
      • Label graphs on the ordinate and abscissa with the parameter or variable being measured, the units of measure in parentheses and the scale. Scales with large or small numbers should be presented as powers of 10. (When an individual value must be presented as an exponential, use correct form: 6 × 10–3, not 6e-03.)
      • Avoid the use of light lines and screen shading. Instead, use black-and-white, hatched, and cross-hatched designs for emphasis.
      • Capitalize the first letter in a label only, not every word (and proper nouns, of course).
      • Units should be included in parentheses. Use SI notation. If there is room, write out variables—for example, Pressure (MPa), Temperature (K).
      • Variables are always set in italics or as plain Greek letters (for example, PTµ). Vectors should be set as roman boldface (rather than as italics with arrows above).
      • Type on top of color in a color figure should be in boldface. Avoid using color type.
      • When figures are assembled from multiple gels or micrographs, use a line or space to indicate the border between two original images.
      • Use leading zeros on all decimals—for example, 0.3, 0.55—and only report significant digits.
      • Use small letters for part labels in multipart figures enclosed in brackets, (a), (b), (c), etc.
      • Avoid subpart labels within a figure part; instead, maintain the established sequence of part labels, using small or lower-case letters. Use numbers (1, 2, 3) only to represent a time sequence of images.
      • When reproducing images that include labels with illegible computer-generated type (for example, units for scale bars), omit such labels and present the information in the legend instead.

      Restrictions on Figure Modification

      • BMEF does not allow certain electronic enhancements or manipulations of micrographs, gels or other digital images.
      • Figures assembled from multiple photographs or images must indicate the separate parts with lines between them.
      • Linear adjustment of contrast, brightness or color must be applied to an entire image or plate equally. Nonlinear adjustments must be specified in the figure legend.
      • Selective enhancement or alteration of one part of an image is not acceptable.
      • In addition, BMEF may ask authors of papers returned for revision to provide additional documentation of their primary data.

      Table Preparation

      Tables should supplement, not duplicate, the text or figures. They should be called out within the text and numbered in the order that they are called out. All tables must have a descriptive title. Within the text, the table title and legend should precede the body of the table where it appears embedded in the text. Observe the following guidelines for preparing tables:

      • Format tables using the Word Table commands and structures. Do not use spaces or tabs to create tables. Do not use vertical lines to separate columns.
      • Every vertical column should have a heading, followed by a unit of measure (if any) in parentheses. Units should not change within a column.
      • To break entries into groups, use centered headings in the body of the table
      • Place footnotes beneath the last row of the table. Footnotes should contain information relevant to specific cells of the table; use the following symbols in order, as needed: *, †, ‡, §, ||, ¶, #, **, ††, etc.
      • Do not use footnotes in column or row headings; include any such details in sentence form in the table legend.

      Supplementary Materials Preparation

      Include in the Supplementary Materials a title and description for each supplementary figure, table, and ancillary file, such as videos, data files, audio files, computer code, etc.

      Option 1 (preferred): Include supporting text (including supplementary materials and methods, tables, and figures) at the end of the main manuscript file, in a separate section titled Supplementary Materials.

      Option 2: Provide Supplementary Materials that can be presented in Word as a separate Word file.

      Acceptable File Formats


      We prefer that the initial submission be uploaded to the electronic submission site as a Word file (PDFs acceptable if LaTeX source files are used) that contains all components of the paper. Create a single file consisting of the text, references, figures and their legends, tables and their legends. Supplementary Materials that cannot be incorporated into a Word file must be sent to the Editorial Office separately.

      Alternatively, you may upload your manuscript as one file that contains all of the textual material plus separate figure files (one for each figure) and separate Supplementary Material files. The text file should be a Word .docx (preferred) or .doc file (as stated before, PDFs are acceptable in the case of LaTeX source files).

      Please use zipped files when necessary to upload unusually large supplementary files.


      See the guidelines above for creating and formatting your original figures. For initial submission, the figure files should be incorporated into the main text file at their proper places if at all possible. All figures should be cited in the manuscript in consecutive order. Figures should be supplied in TIFF, GIF, JPEG, PNG, BMP, PS, EPS, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, or PDF. Bitmap images should be of 300 dpi resolution at least unless the resolution is intentionally set to a lower level for scientific reasons. If a bitmap image has labels, the image and labels should be embedded in separate layers.


      Tables should be cited consecutively in the text. Every table must have a descriptive title and if numerical measurements are given, the units should be included in the column heading. Vertical rules should not be used.

      Supplementary Materials

      Text and figures. Include supporting text (including supplementary materials and methods, tables, and figures) at the end of the main manuscript file, in a separate section titled Supplementary Materials, if this can be easily done. Alternatively, Supplementary Materials can be included as a separate .docx file that can be uploaded. In that case, use one of the file types specified above (.doc or .docx preferred).

      Video files. Acceptable formats for videos are MP4, AVI, MOV, MPEG, and WMV. Keep videos short and the display window small to minimize the file size of the video. Supply caption information with the videos. Edit longer sequences into several small pieces with captions specific to each video sequence.

      Audio files. Please contact the editors regarding submission of such file types.

        Submission of Manuscripts

        All manuscripts should be prepared according to the guidelines above and submitted via Editorial Manager by following the link to Submit Manuscript.

        Additionally, if your manuscript is on bioRxiv, you can directly transfer it to our submission system.

        Submission Requirements

        In preparation for submitting a research manuscript to BMEF, authors should review the Template for BMEF Research Article Submission, which will facilitate accurate preparation and processing.

        The body text of a manuscript for a research article must include the sections in the list below in the same order listed.

        • Title
        • Authors and their affiliations
        • Abstract
        • Keywords
        • Introduction
        • Results
        • Discussion
        • Materials and Methods
        • Acknowledgments
        • Supplementary Materials
        • References

        Submission Checklist

        The following items are required for submission:

        • A cover letter, containing the following:
          • The title of the paper and a brief summary of the main point.
          • A statement that none of the material has been published or is under consideration elsewhere, including online, and that all authors listed on the paper have reviewed and agree to the journal’s Publication Ethics policies.
          • Names, email addresses and ORCID IDs for all authors, including selection of one to be corresponding author.
        • Names, affiliations and email addresses of potential referees.
        • Copies of any paper by you or your co-authors that is in press or under consideration elsewhere that relates to the work submitted to BMEF should be uploaded as a related paper during submission.

        During manuscript submission, the submitting author will be asked to confirm their understanding of or compliance with BMEF’s policies on:

        • Authorship
        • Prior publication
        • Informed consent
        • Animal care and use
        • Related papers
        • Citation to personal communications and unpublished data
        • Data deposition and availability
        • License selection
        • Materials sharing
        • Third-party image reuse
        • Publication of accepted version

          Citation Style

          Authors may submit their references in any style. If accepted, BMEF will reformat the references in Chicago style. Authors are responsible for ensuring that the information in each reference is complete and accurate.

          List all authors by first initial(s) and last name. Do not use op. cit., ibid., 3-m dashes, en dashes, or et al. (in place of the complete list of authors’ names).

          For journals that do not use page number ranges use the article number. For journals that do not use volume numbers, include the date of publication and DOI.

          All references should be numbered consecutively in the order of their first citation. Citations of references in the text should be identified using numbers in square brackets for example, “as discussed by Liu [9]”; “as discussed elsewhere [9, 10]”. All references should be cited within the text and uncited references will be removed.

          DOIs, if available, should be included for each reference.

          Posted preprints may also be included in the References list with appropriate identification information and an independent persistent identifier such as a DOI.

            Publication Forms

            Each submission to BMEF must be accompanied by Licenses to Publish and Conflict of Interest forms completed by each author prior to acceptance. Image Permission forms are required as needed for re-use of any third-party created figure, image, or other asset; permission is only needed if the copyright holder is not an author on the paper.

            These forms need to be completed prior to manuscript acceptance. They do not need to be completed prior to submission.

            Documents may be printed out, signed, and scanned or signed using an electronic signature. Once completed, please upload the files into Editorial Manager alongside your manuscript files.

            Download the Authorship and Conflict of Interest Form

            Download the License to Publish Form

            Download the Image Permission Form

              Appeal Process

              Appeals will be considered on a case by case basis and must be submitted in writing to the editorial office ( Appeals on the basis on novelty or scope are not likely to be granted.