Q: We do not find anything in the manual on how to treat “24/7.” Would you recommend spelling it out?
A: You are right. We don’t address this. But Webster’s 11th does. Both “24-7” and “24/7” are offered as equal variants. I think the latter is more common and would prefer that, without spelling it out.
Q: I understand that human genes are set all caps and italic, with the protein products set all caps and roman. But what to do with proto-oncogenes? Do the examples in section 15.6.2 indicate that, if the c- prefix is used, the lowercase (retroviral) form of the 3-letter oncogene is always used, regardless of whether we’re dealing with humans or mice? I am often presented with c-KIT, c-Kit, and c-kit in one document and would appreciate a clear explanation.
A: For oncogenes, it would always be c-kit and then, based on page 633 of the style manual, KIT for the human gene homologue and Kit for the mouse gene homologue.
Q: To follow your reference style, if “et al” is used, is a period used after “al”? And should the reference number be set as a superscript?
A: To answer your second question first, yes, the reference number should be set as a superscript if you follow the style set forth in the AMA Manual. And unless “et al” ends the sentence, “al” would not be followed by a period (even though it is an abbreviation).—Cheryl Iverson, MA