Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Flu paper duplication earns Expression of Concern

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influenzaA six year-old review on bird flu that failed to credit some content from another six year-old review of bird flu is now stamped with an Expression of Concern.

Here’s the notice, from Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses:

The publishers, editor and authors have noted that the following commissioned Review Article: Ilaria Capua, Dennis J. Alexander, Avian influenza infections in birds – a moving target, Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses 2007; 1: 11–18 published online in November 2006 did not credit that some of the content of this article had previously appeared in the following Review Article: Dennis J. Alexander, An overview of the epidemiology of avian influenza, Vaccine 2007; 25: 5637–5644 and was not referenced as such. The publisher and editor apologize for not identifying this apparent overlap at the time of publication.

The Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses paper has been cited 20 times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge, while the Vaccines paper has been cited 205.

Update, 6:30 p.m. Eastern, 3/21/13: We’ve just learned that Ilaria Capua, one of the co-authors of the Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses paper, has just been elected to the Italian Parliament. Science reported last week:

Virologist Ilaria Capua, of the Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Venezie in Legnaro, Italy, will enter the Italian parliament this week for the first time as a newly elected deputy for the Civic Choice party. The party is led by outgoing Prime Minister Mario Monti, who asked Capua to join his crew for her commitment to meritocracy and transparency and for her expertise in science and public health.

The offer came at the right time; Capua had been considering leaving Italy, as her current laboratory space is not sufficiently equipped to continue her group’s research projects. “His call came on the sixth of January, after I had spent my Christmas holidays looking for a place abroad where I could go working,” Capua says. She hopes her new role as a politician could also help prevent other scientists from going abroad.

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