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Facility for the systematic review and meta-analysis of animal studies

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Mission and background

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Präklinische systematische Überprüfung und Meta-Analyse | © CAMARADES Berlin, BIH QUEST Center, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin

CAMARADES Berlin is a facility to promote the benefits of systematic review and meta-analysis of animal studies, and provides methodological support for Charité researchers to perform robust, high quality reviews. CAMARADES Berlin is located at the BIH QUEST Center for Transforming Biomedical Research.

Systematic reviews provide an overview of a research field and highlight knowledge gaps to help justify new studies, while decreasing the likelihood that unnecessary research is conducted. Empirical evidence from systematic reviews can directly inform 3Rs-related experimentation decisions, from housing and husbandry to sample size calculations, modelling, and outcome testing.

Systematic reviews have helped to define factors contributing to our failure to translate findings from animal models to clinical benefit, including threats to the internal and external validity of animal studies. Through targeted improvement measures, we can reduce the use of animals in research of low scientific value and increase reproducibility and translation.

This facility will position the Charité to lead the application of this methodology to address the 3Rs and provide an evidence base for robust animal experiments across Germany.

CAMARADES 3R Preclinical Systematic Review and Meta-analysis Platform, Oral presentation of Dr. Sarah McCann at Charité 3R Symposium 2021
© Sarah McCann 2021

Wiki on Systematic Reviews

CAMARADES Berlin created a Wiki on Systematic Reviews. Please review it anytime regarding your specific questions on performing a systematic review.

Methodological Support

If you are interested in conducting a systematic review of animal data and want some help to get started, CAMARADES Berlin warmly welcomes enquiries from researchers interested in learning more about preclinical systematic review and meta-analysis or starting their own review. The team provides assistance with:

  • Refining your research question
  • Protocol development
  • Search strategy development
  • Meta-analysis statistical plan and conducting meta-analysis
  • Help with systematic review software and tools including support using the free preclinical systematic review software SyRF

Please send your request via email:

TRAINING: Preclinical Systematic Review & Meta Analysis

CAMARADES Berlin is offering a regular hands-on workshop for students and researchers as well as bespoke courses for your research group.

Next course

In the "Introduction to Preclinical Systematic Review & Meta Analysis" workshop you will learn the major steps required to undertake a systematic review and meta-analysis of preclinical animal studies. Until further notice, it is an online workshop using a mix of lectures, hands-on practical activities and tutorials.

Next course is scheduled for: 31.01. - 02.02.2022, 12 - 4 pm.

Please find course details and the link for registration here. Participation in all sessions is mandatory and will be awarded with 0.9 ECTS-CP for PhD/doctoral students.

CAMARADES Berlin also offers on-demand workshops on:

  • Systematic review protocol development
  • Systematic literature searching
  • Critical appraisal of animal literature in systematic reviews

To discuss your interests and develop a tailored workshop for your graduate programme, research group, or department, please contact:


Prof. Dr. Ulrich Dirnagl

Director Department of Experimental Neurology

Alexandra Bannach-Brown, PhD

CAMARADES Berlin – Präklinische Systematische Review & Meta-Analyse, BIH QUEST Center for Transforming Biomedical Research

Sarah McCann, PhD

CAMARADES Berlin – Präklinische Systematische Review & Meta-Analyse, BIH QUEST Center for Tranforming Biomedical Research

Charité 3R