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Follow the guidelines below for the use of italics in mathematical, statistical and scientific contexts.
Italicize the scientific (Latin) names of genera and species in botanical, zoological and paleontological matter:
Do not italicize the names of the larger subdivisions (phyla, classes, orders, families and tribes):
Italicize letters designating unknown quantities and constants, lines, etc., in algebraic, geometric and similar matter:
Note in the second example that no space is left between the numerical coefficients and the variables, and that the italics help to differentiate between the variable x and the multiplication sign. Correct spacing and italic type also help to distinguish between algebraic variables and SI/metric symbols:
Italicize quantity symbols such as l for length, m for mass and v for velocity in order to distinguish them from unit symbols such as "L" for litre, "m" for metre and "V" for volt, which are normally printed in roman type:
(N = newton, m = mass, and m = metre)
Italicize Latin prefixes and Greek and Roman letters used as prefixes to the names of chemical and biochemical compounds:
A number of Greek and Roman letters used in statistical formulas and notations are italicized:
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