Publication Fees

Authors whose research was supported by grants, special funds (including departmental and institutional), or contracts (including governmental) or whose research was done as part of their official duties (government or corporate, etc.) are required to pay the article processing charge (APC) and supplemental material fee (if relevant) noted in the table below.
All fees are subject to change without notice. Nonmember corresponding authors may join ASM to obtain discounts on publication fees. Former members who wish to renew their membership at the same level may do so online. However, to change your membership level, please contact customer service at [email protected].
If the research was not supported by any of the means described above, a request to waive the fee may be made through the online submission form or submitted via e-mail to [email protected]. The request must include the manuscript control number assigned by ASM and indicate how the work was supported.
Minireviews, Commentaries, Perspectives, Editorials, and Letters to the Editor are not subject to APCs.

Fee Type Member Corresponding Author Non-member Corresponding Authors
Article Processing Charge (APC) $1800 $2500
Supplemental Material $230 $355


Why was Microbiology Spectrum  developed?
ASM publishes several journals that span the field of microbial sciences. All these journals assess potential impact of the study in addition to technical strength. Microbiology Spectrum was developed to peer review and publish studies solely based on technical soundness regardless of potential impact.

Does Microbiology Spectrum accept direct submissions?
Yes. Microbiology Spectrum is now accepting submissions. Click here to submit.

Can I transfer my article to Microbiology Spectrum from another ASM journal?
Yes. You may transfer your article to Spectrum from ten distinct ASM journals listed below using the transfer link provided in the decision letter. If your paper was reviewed at one of these journals, the reviews and the identities of the reviewers will be transferred along with the most recent version of the paper.

  • Journal of Bacteriology
  • Journal of Virology
  • Journal of Clinical Microbiology
  • Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy
  • Infection and Immunity
  • Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • Applied and Environmental Microbiology
  • mBio
  • mSphere
  • mSystems
Please note that Spectrum only publishes primary research. Reviews, Perspectives and mini-reviews may not be transferred to Spectrum. If in doubt, please reach out to a Spectrum staff member ([email protected]).

Can I update and/or add files prior to transferring the paper to Microbiology Spectrum?
At the moment, we do not have a way of updating files prior to transfer. However, once you have transferred your paper, please feel free to reach out to Spectrum staff ([email protected]) with your manuscript ID and a staff member will help you update and/or add files.

Can I contact Editors at Microbiology Spectrum before transferring my paper from another ASM journal?
You don’t have to. If you would like to, please send an email to Anand Balasubramani ([email protected]), Managing Scientific Editor who will be respond to your query. Please be sure to include the manuscript ID in your query.

My paper was accepted on behalf of Microbiology Spectrum at another ASM journal. Do I still need to transfer my paper to Microbiology Spectrum using the link in the decision letter?
Yes. Editors at ten ASM journals listed below may offer to accept papers on behalf of Spectrum. Please use the transfer link in the decision letter to transfer your paper to Microbiology Spectrum. Following transfer, the Editors and staff at Microbiology Spectrum will work with you towards acceptance and final publication of the paper in Microbiology Spectrum.  Please note that you may be asked to respond to concerns raised during peer review and that you may also be asked to edit and/or reformat the paper prior to formal acceptance at Spectrum.  The date of acceptance is the date that you receive the formal acceptance letter from Spectrum. If you any questions prior to or following transfer, please feel free to email Spectrum staff at [email protected]. 

  • Journal of Bacteriology
  • Journal of Virology
  • Journal of Clinical Microbiology
  • Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy
  • Infection and Immunity
  • Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • Applied and Environmental Microbiology
  • mBio
  • mSphere
  • mSystems

Does Microbiology Spectrum offer Open Peer Review?
Yes. We encourage our authors to share the reviews and their responses to reviews at publication. Reviewers are under no obligation to disclose their identities and may choose to remain anonymous.

What areas of research does Microbiology Spectrum  publish?
Microbiology Spectrum welcomes scientific studies from all areas of basic, clinical and applied microbiology.

What distinguishes Microbiology Spectrum  from other open access journals that cover the broad discipline of microbiology?
Microbiology Spectrum is intended to serve as a forum for microbiologists to quickly publish scientifically sound studies. The Editors and Reviewers are instructed to not take into consideration potential impact and to focus on the technical strength of the study. Furthermore, in addition to primary research, Spectrum also welcomes replication efforts, negative results and protocols.

Does Microbiology Spectrum  charge a submission fee?

Does Microbiology Spectrum  consider submissions of manuscripts that have previously appeared on preprint servers?
Yes. For more information, please review the ASM journals preprint policy.

What will it cost to publish in Microbiology Spectrum?
Authors (or their funding agencies or institutions) pay a flat publication fee for each article published. This fee includes immediate open access and unlimited color figures.

Fee Type Member Corresponding Author Non-member Corresponding Authors
Article Processing Charge (APC) $1800 $2500
Supplemental Material $230 $355

Will authors retain copyright of research published in Microbiology Spectrum?
Yes, authors retain copyright. To allow for maximum dissemination of research, articles in Spectrum are published under the Creative Commons CC BY license, which allows unrestricted reuse of the material with proper attribution. Users have the right to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles.

Is Microbiology Spectrum  indexed on PubMed?

Editorial Policies


Errata provide a means of correcting errors that occurred during the writing, typing, editing, or publication (e.g., a misspelling, a dropped word or line, or mislabeling in a figure) of a published article. Submit Errata via the Microbiology Spectrum online submission and peer review system. In the Abstract section of the submission form (a required field), put “Not Applicable.” Upload the text of your Erratum as a Microsoft Word file.

Author Corrections

Author Corrections provide a means of correcting errors of omission (e.g., author names or citations) and errors of a scientific nature that do not alter the overall basic results or conclusions of a published article (e.g., an incorrect unit of measurement or order of magnitude used throughout, contamination of one of numerous cultures, or misidentification of a mutant strain, causing erroneous data for only a [noncritical] portion of the study). Note that the addition of new data is not permitted.

For corrections of a scientific nature or issues involving authorship, including contributions and use or ownership of data and/or materials, all disputing parties must agree, in writing, to publication of the Correction. For omission of an author’s name, letters must be signed by the authors of the article and the author whose name was omitted. The editor who handled the article will be consulted if necessary.

Submit an Author Correction via the Microbiology Spectrum online submission and peer review system. In the submission form, select Author Correction as the manuscript type. In the Abstract section of the submission form (a required field), put “Not Applicable.” Upload the text of your Author Correction as a Microsoft Word file. Signed letters of agreement from all authors must be included as Miscellaneous Files Not for Publication (scanned PDF files).


Retractions are reserved for major errors or breaches of ethics that, for example, may call into question the source of the data or the validity of the results and conclusions of an article. Submit Retractions via the online manuscript submission and peer review system (see Submission, Review, and Publication Processes). In the Abstract section of the submission form (a required field), put “Not Applicable.” Upload the text of your Retraction as a Microsoft Word file. Letters of agreement signed by all of the authors must be supplied as Miscellaneous Files Not for Publication (scanned PDF files). The Retraction will be assigned to the editor in chief of the journal, and the editor who handled the paper and the chairperson of the ASM Journals Committee will be consulted. If all parties agree to the publication and content of the Retraction, it will be sent to the Journals Department for publication.


Please refer to ASM Journals' Ethics Resources and Policies page (https://journals.asm.org/content/ethics-and-policies) for the ethical standards expected of manuscript submissions, as well as for specific recommendations on the proper use of microbiological information, the use of human subjects or animals in research, publishing ethics (including authorship, plagiarism, and image manipulation), conflicts of interest, and availability of data and materials.
Authors should comply with the ASM Journals Data Policy (https://journals.asm.org/content/open-data-policy). In a "Data availability" paragraph at the end of Materials and Methods (or at the end of the text in article types that do not have this section), include the following: a description of the data, the name(s) of the repository(ies), and digital object identifiers (DOIs) or accession numbers. The data described should include accession numbers for nucleotide and amino acid sequences, microarray data, protein structures, gene expression data, and MycoBank data.

Clinical Trials

Microbiology Spectrum requires the prospective registration (i.e., before the first patient is enrolled) of a clinical trial in a public trials registry in accordance with guidelines established by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) (http://www.icmje.org/recommendations/browse/publishing-and-editorial-issues/clinical-trial-registration.html). The ICMJE defines a clinical trial as “any research project that prospectively assigns human subjects to intervention or concurrent comparison or control groups to study the cause-and-effect relationship between a medical intervention and a health outcome.” Such intervention may include drugs, surgical procedures, devices, behavioral treatments, process-of-care changes, etc.
Microbiology Spectrum does not require registration in a particular registry, but the registry chosen must meet the following criteria, in agreement with ICMJE recommendations. It must be (i) accessible to the public free of charge, (ii) open to all registrants, (iii) managed by a not-for-profit organization, (iv) monitored by a mechanism to ensure validity of registration data, and (v) searchable electronically. A registration with missing fields or uninformative terminology will be deemed inadequate.
The registry and the trial registration number must be included at the end of the abstract. If a registration number is available, state this number the first time a trial acronym is used to refer to the trial being reported or to other trials mentioned in the manuscript.


Copyright of all material published in Microbiology Spectrum remains with the authors. The authors grant the American Society for Microbiology a nonexclusive license to publish their work if it is accepted. Upon publication, the work becomes available to the public to copy, distribute, or display under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license (CC BY 4.0). The corresponding author must sign the Microbiology Spectrum Warranty and Provisional License to Publish on behalf of all coauthors.
Authors can sign the license electronically during submission. Supplemental material is also covered by the Microbiology Spectrum License to Publish (see “Supplemental Material”). Please also see our page on permissions (https://journals.asm.org/content/permissions).

Warranties and Exclusions

Articles published in this journal represent the opinions of the authors and do not necessarily represent the opinions of ASM. ASM does not warrant the fitness or suitability, for any purpose, of any methodology, kit, product, or device described or identified in an article. The use of trade names is for identification purposes only and does not constitute endorsement by ASM.


Microbiology Spectrum has implemented Crossmark. Crossmark is a multi-publisher initiative to provide a standard way for readers to locate the current version of an article. Clicking on the Crossmark logo will indicate whether an article is current or whether updates have been published. Additional information about Crossmark can be found on the Crossref website and on ASM's Crossmark policy page.

Author reprints and eprints

Authors of accepted manuscripts will be directed to the Author Billing System, where they (or any of their coauthors) can purchase reprints (in multiples of 100).

Author Warranty and Provisional License to Publish

Microbiology Spectrum authors will be required to complete the "Author Warranty and Provisional License to Publish" through the online submission system for articles accepted for publication.
Please note that if your employer claims copyright, this form must also be completed by an authorized individual from your organization who may complete the form on behalf of your organization, as confirmation that your employer agrees to the terms of this license.

License to Publish

In consideration of publication of the article (“the Work”) in Microbiology Spectrum (including but not limited to text, figures, tables, artwork, abstracts, cover images, summaries, and supplemental material submitted with the Work), the Author hereby grants to the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) for the full term of copyright and any extensions thereto the irrevocable, nonexclusive, worldwide license on a commercial and noncommercial basis to (a) publish, reproduce, distribute, transmit, display, and store the Work in all forms, now known or later developed; (b) to translate the Work into other languages, create adaptations, summaries, or extracts of the Work or other derivative works based on the Work and exercise all of the rights set forth in (a) above in such translations, adaptations, summaries, extracts, and derivative works; (c) to sublicense to others to do any or all of the above; and (d) take any and all action to protect the copyright in the Work on behalf of the Author. It is understood that the Author will receive no royalty or other monetary compensation. In the event that ASM decides not to publish the Work, this license shall be terminated and all rights revert to the Author.

Author's Agreement and Representations

The Author signing below (the “Corresponding Author”) warrants that the Work is original and that the Corresponding Author has full power and authority to grant the rights hereunder. The Corresponding Author represents that he or she has been authorized by any and all coauthors to act on their behalf for this purpose and that he or she is a joint author of the Work or has been authorized by the copyright owner to enter into this agreement. If the Work is a work made for hire and an Author’s employer owns the copyright, this license to publish must be signed by the Author and an authorized representative of the employer. If Crown copyright is claimed because Author is an employee of the Australian, Canadian, or UK Government, then the text at the bottom of this Agreement applies. The Corresponding Author further warrants that all coauthors have contributed significantly to the content and preparation of the Work and that they have seen and approved the content, authorship and order of author representation. It is the responsibility of the Corresponding Author to review subsequent revisions of the Work with all coauthors.

Prior Publication:The Corresponding Author warrants that all coauthors agree that the Work and the substance of its data have not been previously published in print or online, e.g., in a journal, book, conference report, symposium proceedings, company white paper, or on a funder’s website. The Corresponding Author further warrants that the Work is not currently under consideration for publication elsewhere. If accepted for publication by Microbiology Spectrum, it will not be submitted elsewhere. However, publication of an article in Microbiology Spectrum does not preclude a later publication on the same organism, e.g., a full comparative analysis, in an ASM journal.

Preprint Policy: ASM Journals will consider for publication manuscripts that have been posted in a recognized preprint archive provided that, upon acceptance of the manuscript for publication, the Author is still able to grant ASM copyright or agree to the terms of an Open Access license and pay the associated fee. It is the responsibility of authors to inform the journal at the time of submission if and where their article has been previously posted, and if the manuscript is accepted for publication in an ASM journal, authors are required to update the preprint with a citation to the final published article that includes the URL along with a link.

Competing Financial Interests: The Corresponding Author confirms that all coauthors have disclosed any interest that may constitute a conflict of interest regarding the Work, including but not limited to commercial affiliations, stock or equity interests, and patent-licensing arrangements.

Permission: The Corresponding Author is responsible for obtaining written permission for the use of any material in the Work that may be under copyright to others. Unpublished material that is provided by others and included in the Work must be accompanied by a signed permission letter from the provider of such information. The Corresponding Author warrants that copies of all such permissions have been submitted with the Work.

Retention of Rights

Ownership of copyright in the Work remains with the Author or Author’s employer as may be the case. The Author and ASM agree that in addition to any rights under copyright retained by the Author or Author’s employer, the Author or Author’s employer retains (i) the rights to reproduce, to distribute, to publicly perform, and to publicly display the Work in any medium; (ii) the right to prepare derivative works from the Work; and (iii) the right to authorize others to make any use of the Work provided proper credit is given to the original Microbiology Spectrum publication. For example, the Author may make and distribute copies in the course of teaching and research and may post the Work on personal or institutional Web sites and in other open-access digital repositories.

All rights, title, and interest in Microbiology Spectrum as a collective work shall remain with ASM. Nothing in this Agreement shall give the Author any proprietary rights in Microbiology Spectrum other than in the Work.

Special Notice for U.S. Government Employees

ASM understands that works authored solely by U.S. Government employees within the scope of their employment are not subject to U.S. copyright, and the license provision of this agreement only applies to any foreign copyright protection that may attach to the Work.

Open Access Publication

If accepted for publication, the Work will be made freely available to the public on ASM’s Microbiology Spectrum website. ASM will grant the public the nonexclusive right to copy, distribute, adapt, and transmit the published Work for commercial or non-commercial use with proper attribution under the Creative Commons, Attribution license, Version 4.0 (CC-BY) (for details, see https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ and https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode).

The Work is subject to Crown Copyright. Copyright is owned by the Crown rather than the Author if the Work was created during the course of Author’s employment with the Australian, Canadian, or UK Government.

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Please check the format of the address you have entered.
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error