“This publication should be ignored”: Authorship issues, flawed data fell neuro-oncology paper
The Journal of Neuro-Oncology wants you to ignore the following paper: “A single chain (scFv425):sTRAIL fusion protein with specificity for the EGF receptor is effective in vitro but not in an in vivo brain tumor animal model.”
The 2007 article, from a group in The Netherlands, suffered from two fatal problems. According to the retraction notice:
The article has been retracted by agreement between the authors and the editors. The reasons for retraction are twofold:
1 First author Mr Kuijlen failed to inform Dr. Helfrich on the contents of the manuscript, on the fact it was submitted for publication, and that Dr. Helfrich was listed as an author.
2 Only after online publication Dr. Helfrich became aware of this work in which he immediately detected mistakes in Mr Kuijlen’s assumptions and calculations.
All listed authors agree on the fact that the conclusion (also given in the title) about inactivity of the scFv425:sTRAIL fusion protein in vivo is unjustified. Therefore this publication should be ignored. Mr Kuijlen [Ed: that's MD-PhD to you, by the way] apologizes to all authors and to the editors and readership of the Journal of Neurooncology.
The paper has been cited 22 times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.
So the paper was wrong from the top down, and Kuijlen was wrong to have submitted it without the approval of Helfrich, who seems to be the big bat in this lineup. But where were the authorship attestations prior to publication?
Update, 11 a.m. Eastern, 12/10:12: Used a strike-through to delete line about citations. We were looking at citations for paper by a number of the same authors in the same journal, including similar keywords: “The efficacy of alginate encapsulated CHO-K1 single chain-TRAIL producer cells in the treatment of brain tumors.” Apologies for the error.
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