I have problem with my bibliography. I try to figure out what was happening for tree days.. but I have no idea (I am new in latex) and I am using overleaft. please help me

Now I have this error:


 Missing $ inserted.

<inserted text> 
 l.11 ...1786321_Intercalators_as_Anticancer_Drugs}

this is my code

\documentclass[12pt, a4paper, oneside, onecolumn, openany]{book}

\setlength{\parskip}{\medskipamount} \setlength{\parindent}{0em}





































\usepackage[a4paper, top=3cm, bottom=2cm, left=2cm, right=3cm]{geometry}





unicode=true,          % non-Latin characters in Acrobat’s bookmarks

pdftoolbar=true,        % show Acrobat’s toolbar

pdfmenubar=true,        % show Acrobat’s menu?

pdffitwindow=true,      % page fit to window when opened

pdftitle={XXX},    % title

pdfauthor={XXX},     % author

pdfsubject={XXX},   % subject of the document

pdfnewwindow=true,      % links in new window

pdfkeywords={keywords}, % list of keywords

colorlinks=true,       % false: boxed links; true: colored links

linkcolor=cyan,          % color of internal links


citecolor=black,        % color of links to bibliography

filecolor=green,      % color of file links








\acresetall % Reset acronyms - they'll be displayed in full again

















\acresetall % Reset acronyms - they'll be displayed in full again




\include{4-structure protein}










I don't have bbl file, but I have different files as Zotero.bib, agsm.bst , alpha.bst, gla-thesis.sty, newPlain.bst, plain.bst, texcount.pl, url.sty.

what can I do?

  • 2
    the line identified in the error report is a url, which contains underscore characters. if these strings are properly identified with \url{...} this situation should be taken care of. but since you are getting the error message, it's apparent that they are not properly identified. try to identify the particular url that is reported; see how it is identified in the .bib file, and make the necessary correction there (and to similar entries). i'm not a biblatex user, so i can't say exactly what identifier should be used, but this is almost certainly the problem. Commented Aug 19, 2016 at 19:45
  • @barbarabeeton Neither is the OP. They've just mis-tagged the question.
    – cfr
    Commented Aug 20, 2016 at 0:04
  • 1
    If your bibliography style supports it, you may have an url field supported. Otherwise, you'll need to mark up the url manually. You should note that you are using many obsolete packages and that you are loading packages in the wrong order and issuing conflicting and entirely incompatible configuration commands in your preamble. Extensive pruning is recommended: it is worth your while as your life will be much easier and you will prevent problems and make diagnosis of any which nonetheless occur much easier.
    – cfr
    Commented Aug 20, 2016 at 0:08

2 Answers 2


You can't have a_b anywhere in your TeX document, including when TeX tries to compile the bibliography, except in math mode (i.e. $a_b$ is OK).

You have two basic choices: 1) as suggested above, wrap the offending bibtex entry \url{a_b} if it is indeed a url. 2) If not, you can simply escape the underscore in the bibtex entry a\_b.

  • This Stack Exchange post explains basics of .bst files.
  • You are using Overleaf, akin to online LTX. You might want to post help on their system?
  • You have only one first BIB file, to build your Biblio. However, why two Biblio-style files? If only one Biblio being built? Zotero.bib is your BIB.
  • I agree with the previous comment. Check your syntax. Find the line where it errs out. Or hack with deleting lines, till it does run? Then, you can narrow it down.
  • You can pack several of those packages, to be cleaner. usepackage{ae,aecompl,amssymb,mathptmx} Plus, this is not a MWE. So, I can't even try to run it?
  • I'd like to help. But without more details - too vague. Do you have this in a free GitHub repo? Then perhaps. It's what I use for versioning.


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