Systematic reviews are commonly used in human health evaluations to provide overviews of existing data, but have been rarely used in food and feed safety and risk assessments. As the existing methodology in other disciplines may not be directly applicable, EFSA has published a 90‑page guidance document that describes a general method for performing systematic reviews, taking into account issues that may be unique to safety assessments for food and feed. The Guidance describes a framework for identifying the different types of question suitable for systematic review (in general, these reviews are considered appropriate if they address a question that is answerable by a particular primary research study design), and for determining the need for systematic reviews when dealing with broad food and feed safety policy problems. It also provides suggestions (with examples) for eight key steps in the systematic review process. Regular updates of this Guidance are expected.

[European Food Safety Authority. Application of systematic review methodology to food and feed safety assessments to support decision making. Issued on 26 May 2010. EFSA Journal 2010, 8(5): 1637. Accessible at http://www.efsa.europa.eu/en/scdocs/doc/1637.pdf on the EFSA website.] {185360}

The above item was taken from the July 2010 issue of Toxicology and Regulatory News which is sent automatically to members of bibra (click here for more details).

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