There are an increasing number of publications describing associations of clinical symptoms like reduced sperm counts, asthma, obesity and diabetes type II and phthalate exposure. European Plasticisers has initiated a project that intends to investigate whether the studies published do meet the basic quality requirements as outlined in the STROBE criteria for epidemiological studies. The corresponding author, first author and co-authors will be contacted and asked to participate. The project will be done by two researchers from Maastricht University in The Netherlands: Dr. Gerard Swaen, senior epidemiologist and Prof. Dr. Maurice Zeegers, senior epidemiologist and Department Head, Complex Genetics. The study protocol has been reviewed before publication by an independent scientific advisory board.
Members of the scientific advisory board:
Matthias Egger, Professor at Bern University, co-author of the STROBE guidelines
Andre Knottnerus, University of Maastricht, former Chair of the Dutch Health Council, and chair of the chief science advisory committee to the Dutch Government
Rebecca Smith, University of Manchester, author of a recent Reporting Bias study published in BMJ
The final study protocol is available at: https://bit.ly/2Qnju2v
The study is registered at PROSPERO, the International prospective register of systematic reviews: http://www.crd.york.ac.uk/PROSPERO/display_record.asp?ID=CRD42015016017#.VL_cK3Z0wVd