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Categories of Articles

Cancer Research welcomes submission of the following article types to be considered for publication in the journal, subject to peer review as noted below for each type. Please see About Cancer Research for information about the journal, and Instructions for Authors for important policies and instructions relevant to all authors submitting to an AACR journal. Where applicable, the journal’s editorial team reserves the right to edit the title, abstract, and any article summary statement to improve the article's clarity, brevity, and quality prior to publication.

Please note: The article size recommendations below, and most formatting requirements for final publication, are not enforced for initial submissions and do not impact the manuscript’s assessment for potential publication. Word counts are exclusive of cover page, abstract, methods section, tables, and references.

Research Articles

Original studies offering broad impact across the fields of basic, preclinical, clinical, prevention, and epidemiologic cancer research. The reports should be well-documented, novel, and significant to the field as a whole.

  • 250-word abstract
  • 32-word statement of significance
  • 5,000 words of text
  • 8 tables and/or figures (Please keep the number of panels per figure to an absolute minimum)
  • 50 references

Priority Reports

Short, definitive reports of findings of high impact, significance, and timeliness. The format for Priority Reports is the same as for Research Articles with the exception that the Results and Discussion may be combined.

  • 250-word abstract
  • 2,500 words of text
  • 4 tables and/or figures (Please keep the number of panels per figure to an absolute minimum)
  • 20 references


Articles that review a timely subject important to cancer researchers. Reviews must be written as concisely as possible. All Reviews, whether invited or not, will be subject to peer review. Non-invited Reviews are subject to publication fees. Reviews not within the length restrictions below will be considered only at the discretion of the Deputy Editor for Reviews.

  • Maximum of 200 words abstract
  • 5,000-6,000 words of text
  • Maximum of 150 references
  • Limit of a total of two display items—whether figures or tables—with a 3-5 sentence legend. While figures with multiple panels are possible, please avoid overly complex or overly detailed submissions.

Letters to the Editor

In the spirit of open scientific dialogue, the Editors invite the submission of correspondence that presents considered opinions in response to articles published in the journal. Letters to the Editor will be peer reviewed and, if found to meet the requisite publication criteria (scholarly commentary on a subject of importance and interest to the broad readership), the Letter may be sent to the author(s) of the originally published article and possibly to other interested parties for a response to be published in the same issue of the journal as the Letter. Please note that the journal will not consider Letters to the Editor regarding Cancer Research that were published more than 3 months prior. Correspondence concerning articles that have not been published in Cancer Research will not be considered.

  • 400 words of text
  • 5 references, the first of which must be the citation for the original article under discussion
  • Letters may contain figures or tables only if they show data that refute the conclusions of the originating article. Figures or tables showing unpublished data in support of the conclusions of the originating article will not be considered
  • Include a title: "Running title of the original article — Letter"

Resource Reports

Concise descriptions of a new technology, research database, software tool, or internet-based service that represents a useful resource for cancer researchers. A practical application of the resource must be clearly described.

For manuscripts describing a software tool or internet-based service, a strong emphasis is placed on the usability of the resource, and reviewers will be asked to assess this through hands-on testing, including any required installation procedure. The resource must be freely available for non-commercial use, and at least a minimum level of support provided for no less than two years.

  • 250-word abstract
  • 5,000 words of text
  • 8 tables and/or figures (Please keep the number of panels per figure to an absolute minimum)
  • 50 references
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