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Biochimica et Biophysica Acta

Biochimica et Biophysica Acta
Publication details
Standard abbreviations
ISO 4Biochim. Biophys. Acta

Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) is a peer-reviewed scientific journal in the field of biochemistry and biophysics that was established in 1947. The journal is published by Elsevier with a total of 100 annual issues in ten specialised sections.


Early years

Biochimica et Biophysica Acta was first published in 1947 and was the first international journal to be devoted to the joint fields of biochemistry and biophysics.[1] Published by Elsevier in cooperation with Interscience, it was the first international journal to be launched by Elsevier.[1] The journal first made a profit in 1951.[1]

Early papers were published in English, French, and German, with summaries in all three languages.[2] The majority of papers in the first volume originated in northern and western Europe, with a minority from the US and elsewhere; contributors included William Astbury, Jean Brachet, Hubert Chantrenne, Pierre Desnuelle, Claude Fromageot, Heinz Holter, Raymond Jeener, Felix Haurowitz, Edgar Lederer, Kaj Linderstrøm-Lang, Roger Vendrely, Jean-Marie Wiame, and Ralph W.G. Wyckoff.[3]

Important papers from these early years include "Studies on the structure of ribonucleic acids" by Boris Magasanik and Erwin Chargaff (1951),[4] part of the evidence on which Watson and Crick's model of the structure of DNA was based, and "Enzymic synthesis of deoxyribonucleic acid" by Arthur Kornberg and colleagues (1956),[5] an early report on the isolation of DNA polymerase I.[1]


Early cover of the General Subjects section

Biochimica et Biophysica Acta was published as a single title until 1962, when additional sections began to be published alongside the main journal: first Specialized Section on Nucleic Acids and Related Subjects and then, from 1963, Specialized Section on Enzymological Subjects and Specialized Section on Lipids and Related Subjects.[6]

In 1964, the main journal became Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) - General Subjects, and was published alongside the three established sections plus Specialized Section on Biophysical Subjects and Specialized Section on Mucoproteins and Mucopolysaccharides. In 1965, the specialist sections were renamed, becoming Biophysics including Photosynthesis, Nucleic Acids and Protein Synthesis, Enzymology and Biological Oxidation, Lipids and Lipid Metabolism and Mucoproteins and Mucopolysaccharides (ceased in 1965). In 1967, Biophysics including Photosynthesis split into Bioenergetics and Biomembranes, and Enzymology and Biological Oxidation split into Enzymology and Protein Structure; the latter pair rejoined in 1982 to become Protein Structure and Molecular Enzymology. Further sections were Molecular Cell Research, launched in 1982, and Molecular Basis of Disease, launched in 1990.[6]

In addition to the specialised research sections, three review sections were launched in the early 1970s: Reviews on Biomembranes (1972–2000), Reviews on Bioenergetics (1973–87) and Reviews on Cancer (from 1974). The former two were later incorporated into the respective research sections.[6]

Further name changes are given in the table in the following section.

Modern journal

As of 2014, Biochimica et Biophysica Acta encompasses ten specialised sections with a total of 100 annual issues in ten volumes. Over 16,000 pages were published in 2011. The journal sections are published separately, with one annual volume per section (two for Reviews on Cancer), but form part of the volume numbering for Biochimica et Biophysica Acta.[6] Sections are available individually or as part of a combined subscription. All papers are in English.[7] The overall editor-in-chief is Ulrich Brandt (Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany).[8]

The sections published in 2014 were as follows:[6]

Name ISSN Annual issues Impact factor[9] Notes
BBA – Bioenergetics[10] ISSN 0005-2728 12 4.428 Commenced 1967; formerly part of BBA – Biophysics including Photosynthesis (1965–1966). Incorporates BBA – Reviews on Bioenergetics
BBA – Biomembranes[11] ISSN 0005-2736 12 4.019 Commenced 1967; formerly part of BBA – Biophysics including Photosynthesis (1965–66). Incorporates BBA – Reviews on Biomembranes
BBA – Gene Regulatory Mechanisms[12] ISSN 1874-9399 12 6.304 Commenced 2008; continuation of BBA – Gene Structure and Expression (0167-4781; 1982–2007), BBA – Nucleic Acids and Protein Synthesis (1963–1981) and BBA – Specialized Section on Nucleic Acids and Related Subjects (1962–64)
BBA – General Subjects[13] ISSN 0304-4165 12 4.117 Commenced 1964; continuation of Biochimica et Biophysica Acta
BBA – Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids[14] ISSN 1388-1981 12 5.228 Commenced 1998; continuation of BBA – Lipids and Lipid Metabolism (1965–98) and BBA – Specialized Section on Lipids and Related Subjects (1963–64)
BBA – Molecular Basis of Disease[15] ISSN 0925-4439 12 6.633 Commenced 1990
BBA – Molecular Cell Research[16] ISSN 0167-4889 12 5.011 Commenced 1982
BBA – Proteins and Proteomics[17] ISSN 1570-9639 12 4.125 Commenced 2002; continuation of BBA – Protein Structure and Molecular Enzymology (1982–2002), BBA – Enzymology (1967–81), BBA – Protein Structure (1967–81), BBA – Enzymology and Biological Oxidation (1965–66), BBA – Specialized Section on Enzymological Subjects (1963–64)
BBA – Reviews on Cancer[18] ISSN 0304-419X 4 11.414 Commenced 1974

Indexing and online journal

BBA is abstracted and indexed by BIOSIS, Chemical Abstracts Service, Current Contents/Life Sciences, EMBASE, EMBiology, Index Chemicus, MEDLINE/Index Medicus, Science Citation Index, and Sociedad Iberoamericana de Informacion Cientifica.[19]

Articles are available online as PDFs and HTML; access is largely limited to subscribers, with a small number of sponsored open-access articles.


  1. ^ a b c d A short history of Elsevier (Elsevier; 2005) (accessed 12 December 2008)
  2. ^ NLM Catalog (search on "0217513[NlmId]") (accessed 12 December 2008)
  3. ^ Biochimica et Biophysica Acta Vol. 1 (accessed 12 December 2008)
  4. ^ Magasanik, Boris; Chargaff, Erwin (1951), "Studies on the structure of ribonucleic acids", Biochimica et Biophysica Acta, 7 (3): 396–412, doi:10.1016/0006-3002(51)90043-1, PMID 14904432
  5. ^ Kornberg A, Lehman IR, Bessman MJ, Simms ES. (1956) Enzymic synthesis of deoxyribonucleic acid. Biochim Biophys Acta 21: 197–198
  6. ^ a b c d e OHSU Library: BBA Decoder[permanent dead link] (accessed 10 December 2008)
  7. ^ Elsevier: BBA – Biochimica et Biophysica Acta: Guide for Authors Archived 22 February 2009 at the Wayback Machine (accessed 13 December 2008)]
  8. ^ Elsevier: BBA – Biochimica et Biophysica Acta: Editorial Board Archived 15 September 2008 at the Wayback Machine (accessed 12 December 2008)
  9. ^ "Web of Science". 2014. Retrieved 8 July 2014.
  10. ^ Elsevier: BBA – Bioenergetics (accessed 21 April 2011)
  11. ^ Elsevier: BBA – Biomembranes (accessed 21 April 2011)
  12. ^ Elsevier: BBA − Gene Regulatory Mechanisms (accessed 21 April 2011)
  13. ^ Elsevier: BBA – General Subjects (accessed 21 April 2011)
  14. ^ Elsevier: BBA – Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids (accessed 21 April 2011)
  15. ^ Elsevier: BBA – Molecular Basis of Disease (accessed 21 April 2011)
  16. ^ Elsevier: BBA – Molecular Cell Research (accessed 21 April 2011)
  17. ^ Elsevier: BBA – Proteins and Proteomics (accessed 21 April 2011)
  18. ^ Elsevier: BBA – Reviews on Cancer (accessed 21 April 2011)
  19. ^ Elsevier: Biochimica et Biophysica Acta: Abstracting and Indexing Archived 14 July 2008 at the Wayback Machine (accessed 10 December 2008)

Further reading

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Biochimica et Biophysica Acta
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