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While writing up my introduction for my transfer report (first year exam of the PhD in the UK) I want to give importance to the topic saying something like:

It lead to huge research, being N amount of papers published between 2005-2015 in high-end publications.

I will look at this in Nature database. Should I add a bibliography to this? In the affirmative case, what format should the bibliography item have? In the negative case, I shouldn't add a bibliography, but is it OK to put an statement like this one in a report/thesis?

I am using bibtex but just the output format will do.

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It is a non obvious claim, so it should be cited. An alternative would be to give a few examples of high impact papers on the field.

The style should be as any other database, if your style manual specifies it, or as an online resource.

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