Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Lancet Oncology retracts previously questioned Anil Potti paper

without comments

courtesy Duke

Early in December, as the house of cards that is Anil Potti‘s publication record started to really collapse, we called attention to a paper in The Lancet Oncology that had already been the subject of a correction and Expression of Concern in July of last year. Today, the journal officially retracted the paper, “Validation of gene signatures that predict the response of breast cancer to neoadjuvant chemotherapy: a substudy of the EORTC 10994/BIG 00-01 clinical trial.” The paper was cited more than 100 times, according to Google Scholar.

The retraction notice:

The Lancet Oncology and the European co-authors of the article mentioned above, recently expressed concern over the validity of the results. The chemotherapy sensitivity predictions reported in the Article were based on an approach described by Anil Potti and colleagues in Nature Medicine. Re-examination of the validation datasets used for the Nature Medicine study has uncovered errors in the labeling of the clinical response in some of the datasets. Reanalysis of the predictive accuracy with correctly labeled data has shown that in two instances the reported signatures do not predict the response of the validation samples to chemotherapy. The authors of the Nature Medicine paper have therefore decided to retract that paper. Because the Article published in The Lancet Oncology was based on the approach reported in the Nature Medicine paper, we have decided to retract The Lancet Oncology paper. We apologise to readers for any inconvenience caused by the publication of our paper in The Lancet Oncology.

This is the third retraction of a paper by Potti. For more on recent developments in the case, see coverage by Nature, Science, and The Cancer Letter.

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