Aims & Scope

Nature Methods is a forum for the publication of novel methods and significant improvements to tried-and-tested basic research techniques in the life sciences. This monthly publication is aimed at a broad, interdisciplinary audience of academic and industry researchers actively involved in laboratory practice. It provides researchers with new tools to conduct their research and places a strong emphasis on immediate practical relevance and potential to advance new biological applications.

The journal publishes method developments (Articles, Brief Communications), performance comparisons of related, established methods (Analyses), and collections of tools or datasets of broad interest (Resources) as primary research papers. The journal also publishes overviews of recent technical and methodological developments (Reviews, Perspectives) and opinion pieces (Comments). We are actively seeking papers of relevance to the broad life sciences basic research community, including methods grounded in chemistry, physics and computer science.

To enhance the practical relevance of each paper, the description of the method must be accompanied by strong validation, an application to an important biological question and results illustrating its performance in comparison to available approaches. Papers are selected for publication based on broad interest, thorough assessments of methodological performance and comprehensive technical descriptions that facilitate immediate application.

Specific areas of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Methods for genome sequencing and structure profiling
  • Single cell analysis methods, including sequencing, 'omics and multi-omics approaches
  • Methods for spatial 'omics 
  • Methods for metagenome analysis
  • Methods for genome engineering
  • Techniques for the analysis and manipulation of gene expression, including epigenetics, gene targeting, transduction 
  • Methods for proteomics, including mass spectrometry, analysis of binding interactions and analysis of post-translational modifications
  • Methods for systems biology and interactome profiling
  • Methods for glycobiology
  • Methods for metabolomics
  • Structural biology techniques, including cryo-electron microscopy, cryo-electron tomography, and crystallography
  • Methods for protein engineering
  • Chemical biology techniques, including chemical labeling, methods for expanding the genetic code and chemogenetic tools 
  • Biophysical methods, including single molecule and lab-on-a-chip technologies
  • Optical and non-optical imaging technologies, including microscopy, spectroscopy and in vivo imaging
  • Probe design, including genetically encoded and organic dye-based probes and sensors, as well as labeling strategies
  • Methods for cell culture and manipulation, including microbiology approaches
  • Methods to culture, manipulate and study stem cells, organoids and assembloids
  • Immunological techniques, including antigen discovery methods, repertoire discovery methods and methods for studying immune cell interactions
  • Methods for the study of physiology and disease processes including cancer, tumor microenvironment, and pathophysiology
  • Neuroscience methods, such as approaches for studying the brain at different scales, including optical microscopy and MRI, and methods to study animal behavior
  • Methods involving model organisms and their manipulation
  • Computational, statistical and machine learning methods for analysis, modeling and visualization of biological data