Title Page

The first page should contain the full title of the manuscript, a short title, the author(s) name(s) and affiliation(s), and the name, postal and email addresses of the author for correspondence, as well as a full list of declarations. The title should be concise and informative, accurately indicating the content of the article. The short title should be no more than six words long.


A concised and factual abstract is required (of no more than 200 words). The abstract should state briefly the purpose of the research, the principal results and major conclusions. An abstract is often presented separately from the article, so it must be able to stand alone. For this reason, References should be avoided, but if essential, then cite the author(s) and year(s). Also, non-standard or uncommon abbreviations should be avoided, but if essential, the must be defined at their first mention in the abstract itself.

Graphical Abstract

A Graphical abstract is optional and should summarize the contents of the article in a concise, pictorial form designed to capture the attention of a wide readership online. Authors must provide images that clearly represent the work described in the article. Graphical abstracts should be submitted as a separate file in the online submission system. Image size: Please provide an image with a minimum of 531 × 1328 pixels (h × w) or proportionally more. The image should be readable at a size of 5 × 13 cm using a regular screen resolution of 96 dpi. Preferred file types: TIFF, EPS, PDF or MS Office files. Authors can make use of Elsevier's Illustration and Enhancement service to ensure the best presentation of their images also in accordance with all technical requirements


Immediately after the abstract, the author should provide a maximum of 6 keywords, using British or American spelling, but not a mixture of these, and avoid general and plural terms and multiple concepts (avoid, for example, "and", "of"). The author should be sparing with abbreviations: only abbreviations firmly established in the field may be eligible. These keywords will be use for indexing purposes.


The author should define abbreviations that are not standard in this field in a footnote to be placed on the first page of the article. Such abbreviations that are unavoidable in the abstract must be defined at their first mention. There must be consistency of abbreviations throughout the article.


Tables must be prepared using the Table feature of the word processor. Tables should not duplicate information given in the text, should be numbered in the order in which they are mentioned in the text and should be given a brief title.


All figures should be numbered in the order in which they are mentioned in the text. All figures must be accompanied by a figure legend. If figures are supplied in separate files, the figure legends must all be listed at the end of the main text file.

Line drawings should be produced electronically and clearly labelled using a sans serif font such as Arial. Graphs may be supplied as Excel spreadsheets (one per sheet). Other line drawings should be supplied in a suitable vector graphic file format (e.g. .eps)

All photographic images should be submitted in camera-ready form (i.e. with all extraneous areas removed) and, where necessary, magnification should be shown using a scale marker. Photographic images must be supplied at high resolution, preferably 600 dpi. Images supplied at less than 300 dpi are unsuitable for print and will delay publication.


Footnotes should be used sparingly. Number them consecutively throughout the article, using superscript Arabic numbers. Many word processors build footnotes into the text, and this feature may be used. Should this not be the case, indicate the position of footnotes in the text and present the footnotes themselves separately at the end of the article. Do not include footnotes in the Reference list.

Table footnotes: Indicate each footnote in a table with a superscript lowercase letter.