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Literature review examples with explanations

Literature review paragraph example 1

[summarising the state of knowledge and key findings:] In recent years, there is increasing evidence that cancer cells also rewire the metabolism of amino acids [7, 8]. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and also serve as neurotransmitters and alternative substrates for glycolysis and are required for nucleotide synthesis [7]. Tumour cells often exhibit specific metabolic dependencies, such as the increased requirement of certain amino acids to fuel their growth or to modulate the immune response to the tumour [9]. Exploiting unique aspects of tumour metabolism aims to selectively “attack” those tumour cells, effectively avoiding normal tissue toxicity [10]. [identifying research trends in the field:] The concept of targeting amino acid metabolism has been studied for many decades, and the most successful example to date is the depletion of asparagine in the treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukaemia [11]. [...] [highlighting knowledge gap:] To date, the status of arginine auxotrophy has not been fully characterised in any paediatric brain tumour tissue at the protein level. However, analysis of genomic data from the R2 platform ( suggests that several brain tumours, including gliomas, are auxotrophic for arginine, with cells deficient in both OTC and ASS [25]. Additionally, two high-grade glioma (HGG) cell lines (GO-C-CCM and U-870-MG) were shown to require arginine for tumourigenic growth and both died within 5 days of cell culture without arginine [26]. The immediate downstream metabolite of arginine is polyamine, which contributes to the pathogenesis of glioblastomas, and unsurprisingly, arginine depletion reduces the invasiveness of glioblastoma cell lines [27]. [stating how the present study addresses the knowledge gap:] This paper characterises the expression of arginine pathway enzymes in several paediatric CNS tumours, namely, high-grade glioma (pHGG), paediatric low-grade glioma (LGG), ependymoma (EPN), and medulloblastoma (MB).

Literature review paragraph example 2

[highlighting popular research trends:] There is a breadth of qualitative evidence exploring the experiences reported by women regarding their management of GDM, both within Australia and internationally. [reporting findings of key metastudies:] A systematic review of 10 studies highlighted that women with GDM found it difficult to change their eating habits because the recommended eating plan was so different from their previous dietary habits [13]. A systematic review of 41 studies revealed several barriers influencing a woman’s ability to make lifestyle changes such as conflicting and confusing information given by health professionals, personal and professional commitments, women feeling like they do not have a choice in treatment, and the lack of understanding and knowledge [14]. [highlighting knowledge gap] Yet, while women report to face such challenges, there is far less information on healthcare providers who are key personnel that provide this information to women.

[zooming in on a more specific research theme:] Among 12 general practitioners within Australia, many expressed discomfort about managing GDM on their own and reporting to lose touch with the patient for the remainder of the pregnancy [15]. Among 21 healthcare providers, there were reported challenges in providing care to South Asian women living in Australia, particularly regarding their self-management of blood glucose levels with lifestyle modification [16]. A small study of 6 diabetes educators which focused on their experiences of disadvantaged women with GDM highlighted that low socioeconomic status, low levels of education and literacy, and poor dietary habits significantly impacted on their understanding of GDM information, with a demonstrated need to target educational programs for women with low literacy [17]. [comparing findings across several studies:] Studies among health professionals internationally echo these findings, both in relation to women from resource-limited settings in South India [18] and in higher socioeconomic women in Singapore [19]. [reiterating knowledge gap:] The experiences and perceptions of diabetes educators and dietitians, who are integral in providing education and promoting behaviour change, have not so far received a lot of attention. [highlighting the need for further research, paving the way for the relevance of the present study:] Further insight into the knowledge and practices, particularly regarding the diet and lifestyle management of women with GDM, is essential to the development of meaningful care programs. [highlighting how further research will have useful applications, further arguing for its need:] This will support improved and consistent care, increase the usefulness of information given to women with GDM, and optimise the overall health of pregnant women and their children.

[stating how the present study addresses the knowledge gap:] This study is aimed at exploring the knowledge and practice of diabetes educators and dietitians on diet and lifestyle management in women with GDM and, specifically, the barriers and facilitators influencing practice.


Example paragraph 1: Eleanor Bishop, Monika Dimitrova, Alexander Froggatt, Maria Estevez-Cebrero, Lisa C. D. Storer, Francis Mussai, Simon Paine, Richard G. Grundy, Madhumita Dandapani, "Characterisation of Expression the Arginine Pathway Enzymes in Childhood Brain Tumours to Determine Susceptibility to Therapeutic Arginine Depletion", BioMed Research International, vol. 2022, Article ID 9008685, 8 pages, 2022. Example paragraph 2: Amber J. Hanks, Clare Hume, Siew Lim, Jessica A. Grieger, "The Perspectives of Diabetes Educators and Dietitians on Diet and Lifestyle Management for Gestational Diabetes Mellitus: A Qualitative Study", Journal of Diabetes Research, vol. 2022, Article ID 3542375, 11 pages, 2022.

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