The Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine (ARCHIVES) is the official journal of the College of American Pathologists, an organization whose mission is to represent the interests of patients, the public, and pathologists by fostering excellence in the practice of pathology worldwide.

The ARCHIVES publishes original, peer-reviewed articles for pathologists and clinical laboratory scientists. This information is intended to help laboratorians keep abreast of the ever-increasing knowledge base necessary to the successful practice of pathology and laboratory medicine. The journal actively pursues articles that focus on new and/ or complex technologies/disciplines, such as molecular pathology, cytogenetics, HLA, cytometry, informatics, and the science of medical laboratory management.

The ARCHIVES is available full-text and images at www.

Manuscripts are considered with the understanding that they have not been published previously in print or electronic format and are not under consideration by another publication or electronic medium. All manuscripts to be considered for publication in the ARCHIVES must be submitted to our online peer review system, AllenTrack, which is available at This system allows authors to submit text and figures via the Internet. Helpful information about the submission process is available on the site. Authors may check on the status of their submissions at any time during the review process.

When first visiting the above site, authors will need to register. When registering, you will be asked to create a login name and password. If you forget your password, simply go to the AllenTrack Web page (listed above) and click on the Unknown/Forgotten Password? link. After entering either your AllenTrack login name or your name, you will receive an e-mail with a temporary password.

It is important to note that the instructions found on the AllenTrack site primarily refer to how to load submissions and specific information regarding figure requirements. Authors are strongly encouraged to review the Instructions for Authors shown below (available online at prior to submitting a manuscript to ensure their manuscripts are properly prepared and formatted. Submissions not prepared according to the Instructions for Authors will be returned to the authors for revision prior to the start of the review process.

Prior to submitting a manuscript, submitting authors should collect electronic files for the article file, author cover letter, figures, and tables. Completed authorship forms also should be collected from all authors.

Cover Letter

The information in the cover letter will not be supplied to reviewers. All author names, academic degree(s), and affiliations must be clearly listed. Specify who will serve as the corresponding author. If an author's affiliation has changed since the work was done, also list the new affiliation. The editorial office reserves the right to review the number of authors on all submissions. All coauthors should have contributed to the study and manuscript preparation and they should be thoroughly familiar with the substance of the final manuscript and be able to defend its conclusions (also see the authorship responsibility section of the accompanying authorship form).

Specify the address to which requests for reprints (if available) should be sent. If the manuscript was presented at a meeting, specify the complete name of the meeting (spell out association names), the city where it was held, and the exact date on which the paper was presented. Acknowledge financial support provided to the authors for the research presented in the manuscript.

If figures are being reprinted with the permission of a publisher, specify whether the permission letter(s) will be faxed or e-mailed to the ARCHIVES editorial office.


Authors will load figure files directly into the AllenTrack system. Halftone and color images should be submitted at a minimum of 300 ppi, while line art should be submitted at 1200 ppi. Figure files can be submitted using TIFF, EPS, Word, and PowerPoint formats. Important Note: Do not submit photomicrographs as either Word or Power-Point files. Digital color files must be submitted in CMYK mode. Label each figure in the lower left-hand corner; labels should not include the word ‘‘Figure.''

Figures that are not submitted in accordance with these guidelines are subject to revision, at the discretion of the editorial office. The ARCHIVES does not charge authors to print color figures.

  • Number illustrations according to the order in which they are cited in the text.

  • Double-space legends on a separate page. Avoid legends that are excessively long; most legends should not exceed 40 words. Indicate magnification and stain used for photomicrographs.

  • Acknowledge fully all illustrations and tables taken from other publications, and submit a copy of the permission letter to reprint from the copyright owner.

For information regarding the number of figures that may be submitted, see the instructions specific to each manuscript type beginning on the second page.


Double-space on separate pages. Title all tables and number them in the order of their citation in the text. If a table must be continued, repeat the title on a second page, followed by ‘‘(cont.).'' Abbreviations/acronyms used in a table must be defined in a footnote below the table.

Authorship Form

All authors must complete and sign the copyright, authorship responsibility, and financial interest statements shown on the authorship form (last page of instructions). All author names must be clearly printed on the form, and each author's signature should appear next to his/ her name. Manuscripts cannot be accepted until this completed form is submitted. Completed forms may be faxed to the ARCHIVES editorial office at 847-832-8400 or may also be mailed to the editorial office. Be sure to include the title of the manuscript and, if known, the manuscript number, at the top of the form. Note: Faxed forms must have legible names and signatures.

Review the following information concerning the preparation of the article file. Also see the following pages of these instructions for specific information related to Original Article, Review Article, Editorial, Letter to the Editor, and Resident Short Review submissions.

  • Authors should make certain that all identifying information, such as author names and affiliations, does not appear on the title page, text pages, and figures. However, all manuscripts should still include a title page (see Title Page below).

  • Manuscripts should be prepared in accordance with the American Medical Association (AMA) Manual of Style, 10th edition.

  • Double-space throughout, including title page, abstract, text, acknowledgments, references, legends for illustrations, and tables. The right margin should be unjustified (ragged).

  • The article file should not contain unnecessary formatting. Specifically, only use hard returns at the end of paragraphs and display lines; do not use an extra hard return between paragraphs; do not use tabs or extra space at the start of paragraphs or for list entries; do not indent runover lines in references; do not use different typefaces, page breaks, or headers; and turn off line spacing and hyphenation and justification.

  • Start each section on a new page, numbered consecutively in the upper right-hand corner, beginning with the title page.

  • Use conventional units of measurement throughout the manuscript, with conversion factors for Systéme International (SI) units expressed once in parentheses after the first mention of the conventional unit. Example: ‘‘The blood glucose concentration of 126 mg/dL (to convert to millimoles per liter, multiply by 0.0555) was used as a criterion for diagnosing diabetes.'' If several laboratory values are listed, conversion factors may be listed in a paragraph at the end of the Materials and Methods section. In tables and figures, conversion factors should be presented in the footnote or legend. Hematologic values should only be reported using conventional units.

  • Use generic names of drugs, unless the specific trade name of a drug used is directly relevant to the discussion.

  • Do not use abbreviations in the title or abstract, and limit their use in the text.

  • When using acronyms, make certain the full name is spelled out on first use.

  • Give sources (name of company and location) for all special reagents (eg, antibodies, enzymes, probes) and products.

Title Page (page 1 of manuscript)

List only the title and subtitle of the manuscript on this page. All author names, affiliations, financial support received, and related information should only be listed in the cover letter.

Abstract (page 2 of manuscript)

Providing a well-written abstract is critical to help guide researchers to articles. For reports of original data (Original Articles), submit a structured abstract of no more than 250 words under the headings of Context, Objective, Design, Results, and Conclusions. For review manuscripts, submit a structured abstract of no more than 250 words under the headings of Context, Objective, Data Sources, and Conclusions.

For reports of the results of meta-analyses, submit a structured abstract of no more than 250 words under the headings of Context, Objective, Data Sources, Study Selection, Data Extraction, and Conclusions. Authors submitting manuscripts that report consensus statements should provide a structured abstract of no more than 250 words under the headings of Objective, Participants, Evidence, Consensus Process, and Conclusions. For Resident Short Review submissions, include an unstructured abstract of no more than 150 words.

For detailed information concerning what to include under each abstract heading, refer to the AMA Manual of Style.

  • When writing abstracts, do not begin by repeating the manuscript's title. Do not list anything in the abstract that is not also in the manuscript. Do not cite references.


Number references in the order they are mentioned in the text; do not alphabetize. In text, tables, and legends, identify references with superscript Arabic numerals. Submit a preprint for references cited as in press. In listing references, follow AMA style, abbreviating names of journals according to Index Medicus. Note: List all authors and/or editors up to 6; if more than 6, list the first 3 and then ‘‘et al.'' Provide the issue number in parentheses after the volume number. For online journals or articles published online ahead of print, provide the DOI number, if possible, rather than the URL. URLs used in references will not be made hyperlinks.


1. Guler ML, Daniels JA, Abraham SC, Montgomery EA. Expression of melanoma antigens in epithelioid gastrointestinal stromal tumors: a potential diagnostic pitfall. Arch Pathol Lab Med. 2008;132(8):1302–1306.

For a reference to a chapter in a book:

2. Glinoer D. Thyroid disease during pregnancy. In: Braverman LE, Utiger RE, eds. Werner and Ingbar's The Thyroid: A Fundamental and Clinical Text. 8th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2000:1013–1027.

Authors are responsible for the accuracy of references.

Personal communications

Personal communications should be listed at the appropriate location in the text; they should not be listed as a reference. Authors who name an individual as a source of information via a personal communication, whether it is through a conversation, an e-mail, a telephone conversation, a fax, or a letter, must include the full name and highest academic degrees of the individual. Also include the date of the communication, and state whether it was an oral or written communication. Authors who cite personal communications must obtain written permission from the named individual and must include a copy of the permission letter with a new manuscript.

After loading manuscript files, submissions will be converted into a PDF file. It is important to note that the submitting author must approve the converted file before the submission process is complete.

Informed Consent

If the manuscript reports the results of an experimental investigation of human subjects, state formally that consent was obtained from the subjects after the nature of procedure(s) had been fully explained. Include a signed statement of consent from the patient (or, if the patient is a minor, from both parents or the legal guardian) with all identifiable photographs. Consent forms must contain a specific statement that photographs and information related to a case may be published separately or together, and that the patient's name will not be disclosed.

Ethical Requirements

For human or animal experimental investigations, specify in the Methods section of the manuscript what protocols were followed, eg, ‘‘Institutional guidelines regarding animal experimentation were followed.'' For those investigators who do not have formal ethics review committees (institutional or regional), the principles outlined in the Declaration of Helsinki1  should be followed.

In addition to the section-specific instructions shown below, authors are reminded to review the previous pages of these instructions for information concerning required manuscript files and manuscript preparation.

Submissions to the Original Article section should consist of original research. The research discussed in Original Articles must receive institutional review board approval and this approval must be stated in the Materials and Methods section.

Original Articles should generally not exceed 50 double-spaced text pages and have no more than 12 figures/tables. Submit a structured abstract of no more than 250 words under the headings of Context, Objective, Design, Results, and Conclusions.

Review Articles are considered on an invitation-only basis. Authors who wish to submit a review article should first send an e-mail to the ARCHIVES editorial office with a proposed topic. The ARCHIVES Editor in Chief will consider the topic with respect to current editorial priorities.

Review Articles should provide a comprehensive summary of the available information on a specific topic focusing on recent significant developments and/or a new, novel interpretation of the subject. The topic will ultimately dictate the overall length of a Review Article. The maximum length for Review Articles should generally not exceed 50 double-spaced text pages, and there should be no more than 12 figures/tables. Review Articles should not have more than 8 authors. Submit a structured abstract of no more than 250 words under the headings of Context, Objective, Data Sources, and Conclusions.

Editorials are considered on an invitation-only basis. Authors who wish to submit an editorial should first send an e-mail to the ARCHIVES editorial office with a proposed topic. The ARCHIVES Editor in Chief will consider the topic with respect to current editorial priorities.

Editorials generally should not exceed 1000 words. An abstract is not required. Editorials must be prepared in the same manner as a manuscript as described above.

Letters should be limited to 500 words or fewer and to no more than 5 pertinent references. An abstract is not required. Letters must be prepared in the same manner as a manuscript as described above.

These short review articles address a very specific disease or issue that is relevant for clinical practice and provide an evidence-based, balanced, pathology-oriented review on a focused topic in anatomic or clinical pathology. The topic should be restricted to a single defined diagnostic entity or test: for example, fibrolamellar hepatocellular carcinoma rather than liver tumors; polymerase chain reaction diagnosis of tuberculosis rather than polymerase chain reaction diagnosis of all infections. More exhaustive reviews of broader topics should become regular Review Articles.

Resident Short Review articles should include clinical features, gross pathology/histopathology/laboratory findings, ancillary studies, differential diagnosis, current treatment, and prognosis. No specific case report section should be included.

An unstructured abstract of no more than 150 words that summarizes the objective, main points, and conclusions of the manuscript is required. The minimum length for Resident Short Review articles is 6 double-spaced manuscript pages (10 or 12-point font size) and the maximum length is 15 double-spaced text pages (excluding the title page). The maximum number of references is 30, and the maximum number of figures and/or tables is 8. Note: Each figure included in a figure composite counts toward the figure maximum (eg, a composite of 4 figures is considered 4 of the 8 figures allowed).


Unless special conditions exist, there should be no more than 2 authors for Resident Short Review submissions. The first author should be a resident and the second author should be a faculty mentor. Resident Short Reviews will be subject to the same peer-review process as any manuscript submitted to the ARCHIVES.

All accepted manuscripts will be copyedited according to AMA style, and returned with proofs to the corresponding author for approval. Authors will receive their page proofs via e-mail as portable document format (PDF) files. Proofs are sent within approximately 6 weeks from date of acceptance. The authors are responsible for all statements made in their work, including any changes made by the copy editor and authorized by the corresponding author. Authors are strongly encouraged to review their page proofs.

Forms for ordering reprints are included with the edited typescript and page proofs sent for approval. Reprints are shipped 2 to 3 weeks after publication.

All accepted manuscripts become the permanent property of the CAP and may not be published elsewhere without written permission from the CAP or the ARCHIVES editorial office. Contact the editorial office (mailing and e-mail address shown below) for reprint permissions.

Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine

College of American Pathologists

325 Waukegan Rd

Northfield, IL 60093-2750

Phone: 847-832-7400; Fax: 847-832-8400

E-mail: [email protected]

Completed authorship forms may be mailed to this address.

World Medical Association.
Declaration of Helsinki: ethical principles for medical research involving human subjects

(rev. January 2014)