Skip to Main Content
Skip Nav Destination

Department Article Guidelines



The mission of Diabetes Spectrum is to assist health care professionals in the development of strategies to individualize treatment and diabetes self-management education for improved quality of life and diabetes control. These goals are achieved by presenting review as well as original, peer-reviewed articles on topics in clinical diabetes management, professional and patient education, nutrition, behavioral science and counseling, educational program development, and advocacy. In each issue, the From Research to Practice section explores, in depth, a diabetes care topic and provides practical application of current research findings.

In addition to the From Research to Practice (RTP) section, which is the centerpiece of each issue, Diabetes Spectrum offers feature articles, which can present either new material and concepts or reviews of the literature on a given topic in clinical diabetes care. The journal also includes several standing departments, which offer shorter articles focused on well-defined topic areas. Guidelines for department articles are provided below.

Some of the articles published in Diabetes Spectrum are invited by the editors. However, unsolicited original submissions will be reviewed and considered for publication if they contain information that would be helpful to the journal’s readership. All articles, whether invited or submitted, should be written with the multidisciplinary diabetes care team in mind as the main audience.

Department Articles

Diabetes Spectrum includes several standing departments, which offer shorter articles focused on well-defined topic areas. Guidelines and appropriate lengths for each department are as follows. Sample articles are available from the editorial team upon request.

Care Innovations
This department focuses on innovations in care models, care tools, and practice models. Each article should be 1600–2400 words (6–8 double-spaced, typed pages) long.

Guest Editorials
Guest editorials should be opinion articles 800-1600 words (3–6 double-spaced, typed pages) long.

Lifestyle and Behavior
This department focuses on current topics related to behavioral science, lifestyle interventions, and counseling. Each article should be 1600–2400 words (6–8 double-spaced, typed pages) long.

Nutrition FYI
This department focuses on current topics related to medical nutrition therapy for diabetes. Each article should be 1600–2400 words (6–8 double-spaced, typed pages) long.

Pharmacy and Therapeutics
This department focuses on current topics related to pharmacy and therapeutics, including updates on medications, treatment algorithms, and innovative pharmacist practice models. Each article should be 1600–2400 words (6–8 double-spaced, typed pages) long.

Deadlines for invited department articles must be met in order to publish Spectrum on time. If you foresee any difficulties in meeting the deadline, please call the associate editor in charge of the department as early as possible.

Manuscripts may be submitted via Manuscripts should be submitted under the user account of the designated corresponding author (the contact person listed on the title page of the manuscript). If the corresponding author does not have a user account, please follow the instructions on the submission site to request one. Please allow 24–48 hours for a user account to be created.

Useful Tips
For articles that do not have abstracts, please type “NONE” in the Abstract field of the online submission site when submitting these types of articles.

In the File Upload Center, you will be able to browse your computer for the files associated with your manuscript. When you upload each file, be sure to choose a designation from a pull-down menu that describes the file content (e.g., "Main Document," "Figure," "Table," etc.). In addition, please make sure each file name clearly describes its content (e.g., "figure1.jpg," "table2.doc," "coverletter.doc," etc.).

The system automatically converts files to PDF files. Please do not upload PDF files unless they are signed Manuscript Submission Forms. Also, please do not upload zip files.

Submitting Revisions
Revisions should be submitted as an “R” version of the original manuscript number. This is possible by selecting “manuscripts with decisions” from the Author Center menu. Find the manuscript to be revised in the manuscript list. Click “create a revision” in the right column and a revision file will be created automatically. Revisions that are submitted under a new manuscript number will be returned to the author for proper submission.

When revising your manuscript, it is required that your revised version show corrections made either by track changes or a colored font to show additions to text and strikeout to show deleted text. Please do not "lock" or "page protect" documents. Also, please make sure you respond to all reviewer comments on the original submission.

If you are submitting a revision, please include only the latest set of files. If you have updated a file, upload only the revised file. Do not include originally submitted files. Figures and tables must be uploaded with each version.

Once your text and image files are uploaded, please view these files to ensure they appear legibly and that all special characters have translated properly. Do not click "Submit Manuscript" until you are satisfied with the quality of the proofs. If you are having trouble uploading files, please click on the “Help” button in the top right corner of the manuscript submission screen or contact for guidance.


Once an article is submitted, it will be substantively reviewed. A member of the editorial team will contact you if substantive revisions are necessary. Otherwise, you will be notified of acceptance.

Accepted manuscripts will be scheduled for publication as soon as possible and forwarded to Diabetes Spectrum staff for copyediting for style, grammar, and clarity. The copyedited article will then be e-mailed to you with any final author queries for your final revision and/or approval. Typesetting and page design occur after your final approval. Authors do not review galley proofs. 

Correspondence concerning the copyediting and production of accepted manuscripts should be e-mailed to Debbie Kendall, Managing Editor, Diabetes Spectrum, at


All text and tables should be saved in Word document format. Doing so will allow our Editorial Office to verify the word count and our production staff to ready your article for publication. Please do not use headers, footers, or footnotes in your article. Please include each of the sections discussed below. 

Title Page
Every manuscript must have an accompanying title page. The title page should include the title; the first name, middle initial, last name, and the highest academic degree of each author; affiliation (in English) of each author; and name, current address, telephone number, fax number, and e-mail address of the corresponding author.

The acknowledgments should go after the main text and before the reference list. Acknowledgments should contain brief statements of assistance, financial support, prior publication of the study in abstract form where applicable, and duality of interest disclosures. 

The reference list should go at the end of the document, after the main text and acknowledgments and before the tables. References should be numbered in the order in which they are cited in the text. Reference numbers in the text should be in normal type and in parentheses [e.g., "In the study by Norton et al. (23)..."]. Please do not use the footnote/endnote functions found in some word processing programs. See the Manuscript Style section below for examples of how to style each reference in the reference list. 

Tables should be double spaced on separate pages and included at the end of the text document, with the table number and title indicated. Tables should be created using Word and the "Insert Table" command; please do not use tabs and/or spaces to create tables, columns, or rows. Tables with internal divisions (Tables 1A and B) should be submitted as individual tables, i.e., Tables 1 and 2. Symbols for units should be confined to column headings. Abbreviations should be kept to a minimum and defined in the table legend. For footnotes, use the following symbols consecutively, left to right, top to bottom of table: *, †, ‡, §, ||, ¶, #, **, ††, etc. If tables are taken from other sources, the author must be able to provide written permission for reproduction obtained from the original publisher and author. 

Diabetes Spectrum uses digital publishing methods throughout the journal production process. If your article is accepted, it will be published both in the printed journal and online. The following sections provide information on how to format your figures to ensure the best possible reproduction of your images. 

Size. Figures should be produced at the size they are to appear in the printed journal. Please make sure your figures will fit in one, two, or three columns in width. Multi-paneled figures should be assembled in a layout that leaves the least amount of blank space.
1 column = 13 picas wide, 2.2 in, 5.6 cm
2 columns = 28 picas wide, 4.6 in, 11.7 cm
3 columns = 41 picas, 6.8 in, 17.3 cm 

Font. At 100% size, fonts should be 8-10 points and used consistently throughout all figures. 

Text. Information on the axes should be succinct, using abbreviations where possible, and the label on the y-axis should read vertically, not horizontally. Key information should be placed in any available white space within the figure; if space is not available, the information should be placed in the legend. In general, figures with multiple parts should be marked A, B, C, etc., with a description of each panel included in the legend rather than on the figure. 

Line and bar graphs. Lines in graphs should be bold enough to be easily read after reduction, as should all symbols used in the figure. Data points are best marked with the following symbols, again assuring that they will be readily distinguishable after reduction: In the figure legend, please use words rather than the symbols; e.g., "black circles = group 1; white squares = group 2; black bars = blood glucose; white bars = C-peptide." Bars should be black or white only, unless more than two datasets are being presented; additional bars should be drawn with clear bold hatch marks or stripes, not shades of gray. Line or bar graphs or flow charts with text should be created in black and white, not shades of gray, which are difficult to reproduce in even tones.

Reproductions. If materials (e.g., figures and/or tables) are taken from other sources, the author must be able to provide written permission for reproduction obtained from the original publisher and author. In addition, the source should be cited at the end of the figure legend.

Figure legends. Figure legends should be clearly numbered and included at the very end of your main text document and should not be included on the separate figure/image files. Please use words to describe symbols used in the figure; e.g., "black circles = group 1; white squares = group 2; black bars = blood glucose; white bars = C-peptide." 

Formatting digital figures files for print and online reproduction. To meet ADA’s quality standards for publication, it is important to submit digital art that conforms to the appropriate resolution, size, color mode, and file format. Doing so will help to avoid delays in publication and maximize the quality of images, both online and in print. Please refer to ADA's Digital Art Guidelines when preparing your files. If you are unable to provide files that meet the specifications outlined in the Guidelines, you may submit your original source files (files from the program in which they were originally created).

Electronic submission of illustrations is encouraged; however, laser-printed, camera-ready artwork may be necessary if submitted electronic files fail to meet criteria for print publishing. Hard-copy versions of figures for accepted manuscripts should be computer-generated laser prints on high-quality laser printer paper. Authors may be asked to prepare new figures if those submitted are not suitable for reproduction. Each figure must have a legend that appears in the text and not on the figure. 


Terminology and Style

Articles should be written in clear, concise English following the recommendations for scientific writing found in Scientific Style and Format, the Council of Biology Editors (CBE) style manual (6th ed., 1994, Bethesda, MD, Council of Biology Editors). All accepted manuscripts will be edited according to the CBE style manual and The Chicago Manual of Style (15th ed., 2003, Chicago, IL, The University of Chicago Press) by ADA professional publications staff. The authors are responsible for all statements made in their articles or editorials, including any editing changes made by staff.

The designations type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes should be used when referring to the two major forms of diabetes. Abbreviations for diabetes, such as T2D for type 2 diabetes, should not be used. The term diabetic should not be used as a noun. Pharmaceutical agents should be listed by generic name. 

Abbreviations should be used only when necessary, e.g., for long chemical names (HEPES), procedures (ELISA), or terms used throughout the article. Abbreviate units of measure only when used with numbers. Abbreviations may be used in tables and figures. The CBE style manual contains lists of standard scientific abbreviations. 

Clinical laboratory values should be in Système International (SI) form. Kilocalories should be used rather than kilojoules. Glycated hemoglobin should be expressed as percentage of total and as standard deviation from mean control levels. 

References should be listed according to the following examples and should be numbered in the order that they are cited in the text. List up to the first six authors or editors; if there are seven or more authors/editors, list only the first three plus “et al.” Inclusive page numbers should be provided. Journal titles should be abbreviated as in the National Library of Medicine's List of Journals Indexed for Medline; for unlisted journals, complete journal titles should be provided. Material that is in press may be cited, but copies of such material may be requested. Material that has been submitted but not yet accepted for publication in a journal should not be cited as a reference. Such information can be discussed in text, followed by a parenthetical providing the researchers’ names and “unpublished observations”, e.g. (A. Ballard, unpublished observations). Authors are responsible for the accuracy of the references. 

Journal articles:
Robertson RP. Arachidonic acid metabolite regulation of insulin secretion: a role for the lipoxygenase pathway. Life Sci 1983;32:903–910

Garcia MC, Hermans MP, Henquin JC. Diet and insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. II. Monounsaturated fatty acids versus carbohydrates. Am J Clin Nutr 1988;56:205–209

Supplement to journal:
Helms RB. Implications of population growth on prevalence of diabetes: a look at the future. Diabetes Care 1992;15(Suppl. 1):6–14

Ikeda H, Taketomi S. Glucose and lipid metabolism in normal and insulin resistant animals. Diabetes Metab Rev 1992;44:S16–S38

Satoh S, Gonzalez OM, Kozka IJ. Surface GLUT4 glucose transporters in rat adipose cells photolabeled in the insulin-stimulated state (Abstract). Diabetes 1992;40
(Suppl. 1):A340

Consensus statement/position statement/technical review:
American Diabetes Association. Food labeling. Diabetes Care 1992;17:488–489

In press:
Murer E, Boden G, Gyda M, DeLuca F. Effects of Oleate and insulin on glucose uptake, oxidation, and glucose 

E-pub ahead of print:
Murer E, Boden G, Gyda M, DeLuca F. Effects of oleate and insulin on glucose uptake, oxidation, and glucose transporter proteins in rat adipocytes. JAMA. 19 September 2008 [Epub ahead of print]   

Bowes WA Jr. Pregnancy prevention and birth control. In Obstetrics: Normal and Problem Pregnancies. Gabbe SG, Niebyl JR, Simpson JL, Eds. New York, Churchill Livingstone, 1986, p. 636–638

Bortolussi R, Seeliger HPR. Listeriosis. In Infectious Disease of the Fetus and Newborn Infant. Vol. 1, 3rd ed. Remington JS, Klein JO, Eds. Philadelphia, W. B. Saunders, 1990, p. 812–831

Berezin N. After a Loss in Pregnancy: Help for Families Affected by a Miscarriage, a Stillbirth or the Loss of a New Born. New York, Simon & Schuster, 1982

Goverment publication:
Format varies, be sure that all pertinent information is available (i.e., authors, if applicable, department, publisher, date, title, etc.).

Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. Lymphocyte microcytotoxicity technique. In NIAID Manual of Tissue Typing Techniques, 1979–1980. Washington, DC, U.S. Govt. Printing Office, 1979, p. 13 (NIH publ. no. 80-545)

Harris MI, Entmacher P. Mortality from diabetes. In Diabetes in America. Harris MI, Hamman RF, Eds. Washington, DC, U.S. Govt. Printing Office, 1985, p. 000 (DHHS publ. no. 85-1468) 

Brown JA. How New Technology Affects Diabetes Research. Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill, 1992 

Steel JM. Prepregnancy counseling and the management of the pregnant woman with diabetes. In Proceedings of the 39th Annual Advanced Postgraduate Course, Orlando, FL, 1992. Alexandria, VA, American Diabetes Association, p. 97–98 

Computer program:
Format varies. The necessary information includes program name, name of the computer institute, location, page numbers. 

Newspaper article:
Brown KG. New treatments for diabetes. New York Times, 12 Nov 1993: Sect. B, p. 4

Associated Press. Timing your insulin. Washington Post, 5 May 1994: Sect. 1, p. 10

Articles presented at meetings (not published):
Kendall DM, Riddle MC, Zhuang D, Kim DD, Fineman MS, Baron AD. Effects of exenatide (exendin-4) on glycemic control and weight in patients with type 2 diabetes treated with metformin and a sulfonylurea. Late-breaking abstract presented at the 64th Annual Meeting of the American Diabetes Association, 4–8 June 2004, at the Orange County Convention Center, Orlando, Florida

Package inserts:
Cialis [package insert]. Indianapolis, IN, Eli Lilly & Co, 2006

Online publication:
Beta cell function in type 2 diabetes: glucose metabolism and insulin secretion in the normal pancreas [article online], 1999. Available from Accessed 4 May 2000 

Articles published in other languages:
Gullestad L, Jacobsen T, Dolva LO. Surface GLUT4 glucose transporters in rat adipose cells photolabeled in the insulin-stimulated state. Oui 1992;40:34 [in French] 


Copyright Assignment
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) holds the copyright on all material appearing in Diabetes Spectrum. All authors must check the appropriate boxes and sign the manuscript submission form, which transfers copyright to the ADA in accordance with the Copyright Revision Act of 1976.

Duality of Interest
All authors must sign, check the appropriate box(s) on, and submit a manuscript submission form (available on the website). Any author who has a duality of interest to disclose must attach an additional statement that explains the nature of the duality or conflict of interest. Relevant duality or conflict of interest (or lack thereof) should also be disclosed in the authors' comments to the editor during the submission process.

Reuse, Post-Prints and Public Access

Reuse. Authors are permitted to reuse portions of their ADA-copyrighted work, including tables and figures, in their own work, and to reuse portions or all of their ADA-copyrighted work for educational purposes, without submitting a request to ADA, provided that the proper citation and copyright information is given.

Post-prints. Authors are permitted to submit the final, accepted version of their manuscript to their funding body or institution for inclusion in their funding body or institution's database, archive, or repository, or to post the final, accepted version on their personal website. These manuscripts may be made freely accessible to the public upon acceptance provided certain conditions are observed. See the Policies and Procedures tab of the journal’s website for more details.

Public access. As a courtesy to authors, the final print versions of articles will be deposited in PubMed Central (PMC). In compliance with National Institutes of Health policy, these articles will appear on PMC 12 months after print publication in Diabetes Spectrum and will be indexed on PubMed/Medline.

Full-text HTML versions of all articles are freely accessible on Diabetes Spectrum online ( 6 months after the print publication date, and PDF content becomes freely accessible 12 months after the print publication date.

Close Modal

or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal