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Instructions to authors

New from 2017 – no online colour charges!!

Open Access Options for Authors
International Immunology is part of the Oxford Open initiative. For more information please click here or see the 'Open Access' section below.

All JSI members receive a 20% discount on Open Access fees in International Immunology. Once your article is accepted, we will confirm your member status if you choose this option.

Please note that qualifying JSI members should finalise payment for Open Access fees once confirmation of the 20% discount has been received.

International Immunology processes submitted articles online. Please see the detailed instructions page for further information.


International Immunology publishes experimental and theoretical studies from all areas of immunology and includes research conducted in laboratories throughout the world.

Areas that are covered include allergy, autoimmunity, chemical and structural immunology, clinical immunology, cytokines and chemokines, development of lymphoid organs, infection immunity, innate immunity and inflammation, lymphocyte and repertoire development, lymphocyte signalling, mucosal immunity, phylogeny of the immune system, regulation of immune responses, systems immunology, translational immunology, tumour immunity, and transplantation. Studies from related biological disciplines that have direct implications for immunology are also considered.

The editorial procedures of International Immunology are designed to involve a large and geographically diverse group of Associate Editors and Editorial Board members, who are specialists in their field and help to decide which papers are accepted for publication. Through the most careful selection of papers published, International Immunology provides a concentrated source of leading research.

The journal publishes only new material. Submission of a paper will be taken to imply that it reports unpublished work and that the work is not being considered for publication elsewhere. Relevant permission must be obtained for any ‘personal communication’ of unpublished work that is cited in this manuscript. Submission will, furthermore, be taken to imply that, if the paper is published, hybridomas, cell lines, gene clones, rDNA constructs, etc., used in the studies described therein will be made available to interested investigators for their use only in their own research.

International Immunology takes publication ethics very seriously. If misconduct is found or suspected after the manuscript is published, the journal will investigate the matter and this may result in the article subsequently being retracted.

There is no absolute restriction on length of manuscripts. International Immunology does not have page charges, but authors submitting colour figures will incur a colour printing charge of £350/$600/€525 per figure if they choose to have any figures printed in colour (online colour is free of charge). Following publication, the corresponding author will be sent URL links providing free online access to their paper.


The main part of each issue is devoted to original research papers, which should present new results of interest to a broad spectrum of immunologists. These articles must describe significant and original observations, especially those that provide mechanistic biological insights. Papers describing only specialized methods are not acceptable unless they contain meaningful results obtained with the methods. The mere description of, for example, a new monoclonal antibody, a protein or DNA sequence, a structure or an epitope is generally unacceptable unless it provides significant insight about the immune system.

We will consider clinical studies that provide novel insights into basic immunological mechanisms or infectious/inflammatory disease processes; or innovative breakthroughs in therapeutic manipulation of human immune responses. We will not consider Case Reports or simple descriptions/correlations of e.g. cytokine levels, gene-expression profiles or allelic variations.

We also include Short Communications. These can have up to four figures and the "Results" and "Discussion" sections should be combined.

The journal also publishes Letters to the Editor-in-Chief and Author's Replies. The Letter should discuss an article recently published in International Immunology. The maximum word-count for Letters is 450 and there can be up to five references, including reference to the original article; figures can be included as supplementary data. The Letter will be sent to the authors of the original article, who can publish a Reply. If you are interested in commenting on a published paper in this way, please e-mail the Editor-in-Chief.

To provoke and encourage debate, the journal includes Forum articles, which can include opinionated or controversial viewpoints. If you are interested in submitting a Forum article, please e-mail the Editor-in-Chief.


It is the policy of the journal to represent the whole immunological community. The reviewing system has been devised for rapid response and fair processing by means of the large number of Associate Editors, whilst preventing the dominance of a few major institutions by ensuring that no paper is accepted unless it has been looked at by at least one referee from another institution. During the manuscript submission process, authors are requested to nominate three Associate Editors with the appropriate subject-area expertise to handle the paper. Although we cannot guarantee who will handle each manuscript, we will normally start by inviting the nominated Associate Editors in turn. Papers are usually read by two external referees, and the Associate Editor will contact authors for revision, if necessary.

An Editorial Board Member or the Editor-in-Chief will make the final decision on each paper and will notify the author about its acceptance or rejection once the Associate Editor has made a recommendation.


International Immunology processes submitted articles online. Please see the detailed instructions page. Authors should keep copies of all material submitted.

Manuscripts, which should be written in English, are handled by one of the Associate Editors. For details of our Associate Editors' Subject-area expertise please see our Associate Editor page.

Contributors are asked to nominate Associate Editors outside their own institution whenever possible.


Prepare the main text and tables of your manuscript using a word processing program and save it as a .doc, .rtf or .ps file (not .pdf or .jpg). A wider range of formats can be used for Illustrations (see below).

Title pages must include the following: title (an accurate and concise description of the article’s content, intelligible to non-specialists and avoiding jargon and non-standard abbreviations), full first name and surname of each contributor followed by the name, full postal address, e-mail address and fax/telephone numbers of one contributor (the Corresponding Author) who will deal with all correspondence including proofs and a running title not in excess of 50 characters. The total number of pages and figures being submitted should also be indicated on this page.

A maximum of five keywords not appearing in the title should be provided for use by indexing services.

Research papers should start with an ABSTRACT which will appear before the main body of the text. It should be written as one paragraph in complete sentences and should summarize the materials, methods, results, and major conclusions in 250 words or less in a form comprehensible to any immunologist and suitable for abstracting services. If references are used in an abstract, they must include the author(s), journal title, volume number, starting page, and year. Abbreviations should be avoided in abstracts where possible.

The main part of a research paper should start with a brief INTRODUCTION, which outlines the historical or logical origins of the study without repeating the abstract or summarizing the results, a section on METHODS, and one on RESULTS in which the observations are presented with minimal reference to earlier literature or to possible interpretations. The final DISCUSSION may usefully start with a brief summary of the major findings, but repetition of parts of the results section should be avoided.

Supplier names and locations (city and country) should be given for any reagents/equipment used.

An alphabetized list of abbreviations used in the text must be provided on a separate page. A list of standard abbreviations, and whether they should or should not be defined in the text can be found here.

Funding. Details of all funding sources for the work in question should be given in a separate section entitled 'Funding'. This should appear before the 'Acknowledgements' section.

The following rules should be followed:

  • The sentence should begin: ‘This work was supported by …’
  • The full official funding agency name should be given, i.e. ‘The National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health’ or simply 'National Institutes of Health' not ‘NCI' (one of the 27 subinstitutions) or 'NCI at NIH’ (full RIN-approved list of UK funding agencies).
  • Grant numbers should be complete and accurate and provided in brackets as follows: ‘[grant number ABX CDXXXXXX]’.
  • Multiple grant numbers should be separated by a comma as follows: ‘[grant numbers ABX CDXXXXXX, EFX GHXXXXXX]’.
  • Agencies should be separated by a semi-colon (plus ‘and’ before the last funding agency).
  • Where individuals need to be specified for certain sources of funding the following text should be added after the relevant agency or grant number 'to [author initials]'.

An example is given here: ‘This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health [P50 CA098252 and CA118790 to R.B.S.R.] and the Alcohol & Education Research Council [HFY GR667789].

Crossref Funding Data Registry
In order to meet your funding requirements authors are required to name their funding sources, or state if there are none, during the submission process. For further information on this process or to find out more about the CHORUS initiative please click here.

Acknowledgements should follow the main text. Grants or contribution numbers can be acknowledged.

Tables should be numbered with Arabic numberals in the order that they appear in the text. Footnotes to tables should be included with the table. There should be an indication in the main text of the most appropriate placement of each table and illustration.


References are to be cited in the text by a number in parentheses and should be numbered in order of first appearance. An example is: “Ikeda (3) has reported . . .”. Where there are more than two authors, the citation in the text should use the formulation 'et al.'. An example is: 'This observation has been reported by Vormehr et al. (1)'.

In the list of references, papers from journals should be listed thus:

1 Vormehr, M., Diken, M., Boegel, S., Kreiter, S., Türeci, Ö. and Sahin, U. 2016. Mutanome directed cancer immunotherapy. Curr. Opin. Immunol. 39:14.

If seven or more authors are included on a paper, list just the first three, then “et al.”

2 Hugo, W., Zaretsky, J. M., Sun, L. et al. 2016. Genomc and transcriptomic features of response to anti-PD-1 therapy in metastatic melanoma. Cell 165:35.

Please provide as many details as possible for ‘in press’ references and references to published meeting abstracts:

3 Ikeda, H. 2016. T-cell adoptive immunotherapy using tumor-infiltrating T cells and genetically engineered TCR-T cells. Int. Immunol. in press: doi:10.1093/intimm/dxw022

4 Hodi, F. S., Kluger, H., Sznol, M. et al. 2016. Durable, long-term survival in previously treated patients with advanced melanoma (MEL) who received nivolumam (NIVO) monotherapy in a phase I trial. In AACR Annual Meeting, April 16–20 2016, New Orleans, LA. Abstract Number CT001.

5 Pinata, S., Lorusso, D., Scambia, G. et al. 2014. MITO-11: a randomised multicenter phase II trial testing the addition of pazopanib to weekly paclitaxel in platinum-resistant or refractory advanced ovarian cancer (AOC). J. Clin. Oncol. 32(Suppl. 1): Abstract no. 5503.

6 Eggermont, A. M., Chiarion-Sileni, V., Grob, J. J. et al. 2014. Ipilimumab versus placebo after complete resection of stage III melanoma: Initial efficacy and safety results from the EORTC 18071 phase III trial. J. Clin. Oncol. 32(Issue 18 Suppl., June 20, 2014 ASCO Annual Meeting Abstracts Part 2): Abstract LBA9008, June 11.

Chapters from books, or whole books, should be listed in the following styles:

7 Swallow, K. 2016. Allergy. In Hall, A., Scott, C. and Buckland, M., eds, Clinical Immunology, 2nd edn, p. 63. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.

8 Ratcliffe, M. J. H. 2016. Encyclopedia of Immunobiology, 1st edn. Academic Press, Cambridge, MA, USA.

Websites should be listed in the following style:

9 Available at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01611558

If preparing your manuscript with EndNote, be sure to download the latest International Immunology EndNote reference style file (Intl Immunology.ens), which can be found here [http://endnote.com/downloads/style/international-immunology]


Each figure should be relevant to the text and figures should be presented in the order in which they are mentioned in the text.

Electronic files of figures accepted for publication must be saved at a resolution of at least 300 d.p.i. at the final printed size (86 mm single and 178 mm double column width) for colour and half-tone figures and 1200 d.p.i. for black and white line drawings. Prepare your figures using applications capable of generating high-resolution files. When naming your files, please use simple filenames and avoid special characters and spaces. If you are a Macintosh user, you must also type the three-letter extension at the end of the file name you choose (e.g. .doc, .rtf, .jpg, .gif, .tif, .ppt, .xls, .pdf, .eps, .mov). Colour figures must be supplied in CMYK format rather than RGB. Lettering should be in proportion, ideally providing characters 2 mm high on the printed page. Figure parts should be labelled upper case A, B, etc., in the top left hand corner.

FACS data. Clearly identify the parameter for each axis, e.g. forward scatter, CD4, propidium iodide. Draw appropriate gates on the figures when pertinent.

Figure legends should explain each figure as fully as possible, referring the reader to the text only on rare occasions in order to avoid repeating in the legends material that must be included in the text. All abbreviations used in the figures should be explained in each legend where possible. When large numbers of abbreviations are necessary in the figures, the authors should include these in a separate list of abbreviations.

The legend should state what the figure depicts and specify the number of measurements summarized in each part; for example “the mean ± SEM from three independent experiments is shown”. Any “representative” figures should depict typical findings from single experiments; for example “one representative of three independent experiments, each with five subjects, is shown”.

Third-Party Content in Open Access papers
If you will be publishing your paper under an Open Access licence but it contains material for which you do not have Open Access re-use permissions, please state this clearly by supplying the following credit line alongside the material:

Title of content
Author, Original publication, year of original publication, by permission of [rights holder]

This image/content is not covered by the terms of the Creative Commons licence of this publication. For permission to reuse, please contact the rights holder.


From January 2017 all figures submitted to the journal in colour will be published in colour online at no cost. Authors may choose to also publish their figures in colour in the print journal for £350/$600/€525 per figure: in this case authors should confirm at the point of submission that they will bear the cost of colour reproduction. An invoice will be issued at the time of publication. Figure captions must be suitably worded to apply to both the print and online versions of the article. Black and white figures will be printed without additional cost, but should be well prepared with high contrast. These charges do not apply to invited review articles.


Supporting material that is not essential for inclusion in the full text of the manuscript, but would nevertheless benefit the reader, can be made available by the publisher as online-only content, linked to the online manuscript. The material should not be essential to understanding the conclusions of the paper, but should contain data that is additional or complementary and directly relevant to the article content. Such information might include more detailed methods, extended data sets/data analysis, or additional figures (including colour). All text and figures must be provided in suitable electronic formats (instructions for the preparation of Supplementary Data can be viewed here). All material to be considered as Supplementary Data must be submitted at the same time as the main manuscript for peer review. It cannot be altered or replaced after the paper has been accepted for publication. Please indicate clearly the material intended as Supplementary.


If your first language is not English, you may wish to have your paper professionally edited. This will ensure that the academic content of your paper is fully understood by journal editors and reviewers. Language editing is optional and does not guarantee that your manuscript will be accepted for publication. For further information on this service, please click here. Several specialist language editing companies offer similar services and you can also use any of these. Authors are liable for all costs associated with such services.


All authors listed on the manuscript should have contributed significantly to the experimental design, its implementation, or analysis and interpretation of the data. All authors should have been involved in the writing of the manuscript at draft and any revision stages, and have read and approved the final version. Anyone who made major contributions to the writing of the manuscript should be listed as an author (e.g. “ghost writing” is prohibited by the journal). Any other individuals who made less substantive contributions to the experiments or the writing of the manuscript should be listed in the acknowledgement section. Any change in authorship (including author order) after the initial manuscript submission must be approved in writing by all authors. Assurance that all authors of the paper have fulfilled these criteria for authorship should be given in the covering letter.


Upon receipt of accepted manuscripts at Oxford Journals authors will be invited to complete an online copyright licence to publish form.


For information about this journal's policy, please visit our Author Self-Archiving policy page.


At the point of submission, International Immunology’s policy requires that each author reveal any financial interests or connections, direct or indirect, or other situations that might raise the question of bias in the work reported or the conclusions, implications, or opinions stated - including pertinent commercial or other sources of funding for the individual author(s) or for the associated department(s) or organization(s), personal relationships, or direct academic competition. When considering whether you should declare a conflicting interest or connection please consider the conflict of interest test: Is there any arrangement that would embarrass you or any of your co-authors if it was to emerge after publication and you had not declared it?

As an integral part of the online submission process, Corresponding authors are required to confirm whether they or their co-authors have any potential Conflicts of Interest to declare, and to provide details of these.

If the manuscript is published, Conflict of Interest information will be communicated in a statement in the published paper.


Submitted material, including all of the text and figures, must be original and not have been published, or submitted anywhere else, even if it was in a different language. To allow assessment of novelty, relevant previously published findings must be described.


Manipulation of data is generally unacceptable and any unavoidable modification of figures must be kept to a minimum and must be detailed in the figure legend and/or methods section. Each image must still accurately represent the original data. Any change must be applied to the whole image and to controls, and no features should be added, altered or moved. Data from separate experiments should never be merged into a single image.


The cover letter should state whether or not the manuscript contains experiments involving humans, live non-human vertebrates or live higher invertebrates. The “Methods” section must state that experiments involving human tissue accord with the ethical standards of the appropriate institutional and national committees and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975 (revised in 2008) and that care of animals was in accord with institution guidelines; if no such rules are in place, this must be stated. Where applicable, the dose and schedule of anesthetics and analgesics should be reported.
When preparing your manuscript, we recommend referring to the ARRIVE guidelines.


International Immunology authors have the option to publish their paper under the Oxford Open initiative; whereby, for a charge, their paper will be made freely available online immediately upon publication. After your manuscript is accepted the corresponding author will be required to accept a mandatory licence to publish agreement. As part of the licensing process you will be asked to indicate whether or not you wish to pay for open access. If you do not select the open access option, your paper will be published with standard subscription-based access and you will not be charged.

Oxford Open articles are published under Creative Commons licences.
RCUK/Wellcome Trust funded authors publishing in International Immunology can use the Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC BY) for their articles.
Other authors may also choose the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial licence (CC BY-NC)

Please click here for more information about the Creative Commons licences.

You can pay Open Access charges using our Author Services site. This will enable you to pay online with a credit/debit card, or request an invoice by email or post. The applicable open access charges vary according to which Creative Commons licence you select. The Open Access charges for International Immunology are as follows.

Charges for CC BY
• Regular charge: £2000/ $3200 / €2600
• List B Developing country charge*: £1000/ $1600 / €1300
• List A Developing country charge*: £0 /$0 / €0

Charges for CC BY-NC:
•Regular charge: £1750/ $2800 / €2275
•List B Developing country charge*: £875/ $1400 / €1138
•List A Developing country charge*: £0 /$0 / €0

*Visit our developing countries page (click here for a list of qualifying countries).

Please note that these charges are in addition to any colour charges that may apply.

Orders from the UK will be subject to the current UK VAT charge. For orders from the rest of the European Union, OUP will assume that the service is provided for business purposes. Please provide a VAT number for yourself or your institution and ensure you account for your own local VAT correctly.


If you experience any problems regarding your submission, please contact the editorial office:
Email: ii.editorialoffice@oup.com
Tel: +81 6 6816 3387
Fax: +81 6 6816 3765

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