Wednesday, October 24, 2007

B - Strengthening the reporting of observational studies

Von Elm E, Altman DG, Egger M, Pocock SJ, Gotzsche PC, Vandenbroucke JP
for the STROBE Initiative. Strengthening the reporting of observational
studies in epidemiology (STROBE) statement: guidelines for reporting
observational studies.
BMJ 2007;335:806-808

The reporting of observational research in biomedicine is often
inadequate, which hampers the assessment of its strengths and weaknesses
and of a study's generalisability. The Strengthening the Reporting of
Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) Initiative developed
recommendations on what should be included in an accurate and complete
report of an observational study. In September, 2004 methodologists,
researchers, and journal editors helped to draft a checklist of items,
which was revised during several meetings of the coordinating group and in
e-mail discussions with the larger group of STROBE contributors. This
resulted in a checklist of 22 items (the STROBE statement) that relate to
the title, abstract, introduction, methods, results, and discussion
sections of articles. 18 items are common to all three study designs and
four are specific for cohort, case-control, or cross sectional studies. A
detailed explanation and elaboration document is published separately and
is freely available on the websites of PLoS Medicine, Epidemiology, and
Annals of Internal Medicine.

posted for Margaret Cooter

B - A graphical method for depicting randomised trials

Perera R, Heneghan C, Yudkin P. A graphical method for depicting
randomised trials of complex interventions.
BMJ 2007;334:127-9.

Making the what, when, and who of non-drug treatments easier to understand
would benefit researchers and readers. Using a single graphical
representation could clarify descriptions, and would prompt researchers to
focus on the structure and timing and ensure appropriate comparisons.
Readers would be able to see the differences between comparison groups

posted for MArgaret Cooter

Thursday, October 04, 2007

B - Scientific citations in Wikipedia

Nielsen FA. Scientific citations in Wikipedia. First Monday 2007;(8).

Wikipedia, the Internet–based encyclop√¶dia is steadyly growing in popularity also for scientific research, but some critics have questioned the quality of entries.
Citing Wikipedia as an authoritative source may be questionable: biased coverage and lack of sources are among the most common “ Wikipedia risks.” this study examines the outbound links from Wikipedia articles to articles in scientific journals and compares them against journal statistics from Journal Citation Reports such as impact factors. The results show an increasing use of structured citation markup and good agreement with citation patterns seen in the scientific literature, though with a slight tendency to cite articles in high–impact journals such as Nature and Science . These results increase confidence in Wikipedia as a reliable information resource for science in general.

Thanks to Margaret Cooter