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Curr Med Res Opin. 2019 Apr 12:1. doi: 10.1080/03007995.2019.1607270. [Epub ahead of print]

Reporting quality in systematic reviews of in vitro studies: a systematic review.

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a Faculty of Medicine , Al-Azhar University , Cairo , 11884 , Egypt.
b Kasralainy School of Medicine, Cairo University , Cairo , 11562 , Egypt.
c Teaching assistant at Microbiology and Immunology Department, Faculty of Medicine , Tanta University , Tanta , 31527 , Egypt.
d Faculty of Medicine , Menoufia University , Egypt.
e Faculty of Medicine , Suez Canal University , Ismailia , Egypt.
f Surgery Department , School of Medicine, Tan Tao University , 70000 , Vietnam.
g Department of Vascular Surgery , Uniklinik Magdeburg , 39112 , Germany.
h Ministry of Health , 11516 , Cairo , Egypt.
i Department of Pediatrics , Zagazig University Hospitals, Faculty of Medicine , Sharkia , 44511 , Egypt.
j Department of Medical statistic and Informatics, Faculty of Public Health , University of Medicine and Pharmacy at Ho Chi Minh City , Ho Chi Minh City , 700000 , Vietnam.
k Department of Immunogenetics , Institute of Tropical Medicine (NEKKEN), Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Nagasaki University , 1-12-4 Sakamoto , Nagasaki 852-8523 , Japan.
l Evidence Based Medicine Research Group & Faculty of Applied Sciences, Ton Duc Thang University , Ho Chi Minh City , Vietnam.
m Department of Clinical Product Development , Institute of Tropical Medicine (NEKKEN), School of Tropical Medicine and Global Health, Nagasaki University , Nagasaki , Japan.



Systematic reviews (SRs) and/or meta-analyses of in vitro research have an important role in establishing the foundation for clinical studies. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the reporting quality of SRs of in vitro studies using PRISMA checklist.


Four databases were searched including PubMed, Virtual Health Library (VHL), Web of Science (ISI), and Scopus. The search was limited from 2006 to 2016 to include all SR and/or MA of pure in vitro studies. The evaluation of reporting quality was done using the PRISMA checklist.


Out of 7702 search results, 65 SRs were included and evaluated with PRISMA checklist. Overall, the mean overall quality score of reported items of PRISMA checklist was 68%. We have noticed an increasing pattern of the numbers of the published SR of in vitro studies over the last ten years. In contrast, the reporting quality was not significantly improved over the same period (pā€‰=ā€‰0.363). There was a positive but not significant correlation between the overall quality score and the journal`s impact factor of the included studies.


The adherence of SRs of in vitro studies to the PRISMA guideline was poor; Therefore, we believe that using reporting guidelines and journals paying attention to this fact will improve the quality of SRs of in vitro studies.


; Meta-analysis; PRISMA; Reporting quality; Systematic review

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