metagear package

purpose of the metagear package

metagear is a comprehensive, multifunctional toolbox with capabilities aimed to cover much of the research synthesis taxonomy: from applying a systematic review approach to objectively assemble and screen the literature, to extracting data from studies, and to finally summarize and analyze these data with the statistics of meta-analysis. More information about metagear can be found at

installation instructions and dependencies

metagear has two external dependencies that need to be installed and loaded prior to use in R. The first is the EBImage R package (Pau et al. 2010) available only from the Bioconductor repository: To properly install metagear, start with the following R script that loads the Bioconductor resources needed to install the EBImage (also accept all of its dependencies):


The second is associated with metagear’s abstract_screener function that generates a GUI to help quickly sift bibliographic data from multiple studies. The first loading of metagear with library(metagear) will trigger the download of the gWidgets package and associated toolkits needed to build GUI interfaces. A small window will also prompt you to download GTK+ asking "Need GTK+ ?". From the listed options answer: "Install GTK+" and click "OK". Once installed, these will not be downloaded again.

Finally, sometimes the installation will freeze; however, re-starting the R session can fix this issue.

How to cite?

Lajeunesse, M.J. (2016) Facilitating systematic reviews, data extraction and meta-analysis with the metagear package for R. Methods in Ecology and Evolution 7, 323−330.