Recommendations for the conduct of systematic reviews in toxicology and environmental health research (COSTER)

Whaley, Paul and Aiassa, Elisa and Beausoleil, Claire and Beronius, Anna and Bilotta, Gary S. and Boobis, Alan and de Vries, Rob B. M. and Hanberg, Annika and Hoffmann, Sebastian and Hunt, Neil and Kwiatkowski, Carol F. and Lam, Juleen and Lipworth, Steven and Martin, Olwenn and Randall, Nicola and Rhomberg, Lorenz and Rooney, Andrew and Schunemann, Holger J. and Wikoff, Daniele and Wolffe, Taylor and Halsall, Crispin (2020) Recommendations for the conduct of systematic reviews in toxicology and environmental health research (COSTER). Environment International, 143: 105926. ISSN 0160-4120

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Background There are several standards that offer explicit guidance on good practice in systematic reviews (SRs) for the medical sciences; however, no similarly comprehensive set of recommendations has been published for SRs that focus on human health risks posed by exposure to environmental challenges, chemical or otherwise. Objectives To develop an expert, cross-sector consensus view on a key set of recommended practices for the planning and conduct of SRs in the environmental health sciences. Methods A draft set of recommendations was derived from two existing standards for SRs in biomedicine and developed in a consensus process, which engaged international participation from government, industry, non-government organisations, and academia. The consensus process consisted of a workshop, follow-up webinars, email discussion and bilateral phone calls. Results The Conduct of Systematic Reviews in Toxicology and Environmental Health Research (COSTER) recommendations cover 70 SR practices across eight performance domains. Detailed explanations for specific recommendations are made for those identified by the authors as either being novel to SR in general, specific to the environmental health SR context, or potentially controversial to environmental health SR stakeholders. Discussion COSTER provides a set of recommendations that should facilitate the production of credible, high-value SRs of environmental health evidence, and advance discussion of a number of controversial aspects of conduct of EH SRs. Key recommendations include the management of conflicts of interest, handling of grey literature, and protocol registration and publication. A process for advancing from COSTER’s recommendations to developing a formal standard for EH SRs is also indicated.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Environment International
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? systematic reviewresearch standardsresearch synthesis methodshealth assessmentmeta-analysisenvironmental healthtoxicologyepidemiologyenvironmental science(all) ??
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Deposited On:
13 Jul 2020 10:20
Last Modified:
08 Jun 2024 00:32