Cossu-UCL follow-up: PLOS ONE paper to be corrected
We have a follow-up from last week’s story about a University College London (UCL) investigation into the work of Giulio Cossu that found errors but no “deliberate intention to mislead.”UCL said it will not make the full report available:
…on the advice of UCL’s Freedom of Information officer UCL will not be releasing the report given that it includes information provided in confidence, as well as personal information.
The university’s panel looked at eight of Cossu’s papers highlighted by pseudonymous whistleblower Clare Francis. One will be corrected: “Magic-Factor 1, a Partial Agonist of Met, Induces Muscle Hypertrophy by Protecting Myogenic Progenitors from Apoptosis,” which appeared in PLoS One in 2008. The paper has been cited nine times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.
UCL also told us that they “did not consider” a now-retracted Journal of Cell Biology paper as part of its investigation, “but simply noted it.” They sent the relevant paragraph from the report:
In his communications with the Panel, Professor Cossu had highlighted an article published in theJournal of Cell Biology that had subsequently been retracted. He explained that this was not from his group but from a neighbouring laboratory that included him as a senior author on the basis of his mentorship activities (J. Cell Biol.172, 233-44, 2006). The Chair explained to Professor Cossu that the Panel had noted this article, but wished only to consider the specific allegations submitted by ‘Clare Francis’, in line with the Panel’s terms of reference.