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Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Duplication forces retraction of genomics paper

with 3 comments

biosA group of biologists has lost a paper about a genomics tool after they published the findings twice.

Here’s the notice for the now-retracted paper in BIOS:

Nagahama, Y., Szulewski, J., Mundorff, J., Burke, R., Wagner, M., Kochuba, M., Bireley, S., Fuesler, J., and Coren, J.S.. (2012). An arrayed human genomic library constructed in the PAC shuttle vector pJCPAC-Mam2 for genome-wide association studies. BIOS 83(3), 56-62.

The authors retract the article due to duplicate publication of tables that were previously published in the journal Gene.

Last author Jonathon Coren, who is corresponding author of the Gene paper, is chair of Elizabethtown College’s biology department. Co-author John Fuesler, who worked with Coren as a student and is now in graduate school at Princeton, is first author on the Gene paper. Yasunori Nagahama, the first author of the BIOS paper, was also a student at Elizabethtown.

The Gene paper, which has the identical title but only six of the BIOS paper’s nine authors, has yet to be cited, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.

We’ve contacted a few of the authors, and will update with anything we learn.

BIOS is published by the the Beta Beta Beta National Biological Honor Society,

a society for students, particularly undergraduates, dedicated to improving the understanding and appreciation of biological study and extending boundaries of human knowledge through scientific research.

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Written by Ivan Oransky

June 25, 2013 at 9:30 am

3 Responses

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  1. It stuns me that such top level US researchers can think that they can just re-publish the exact same tables. I am curious to know what is taught about plagiarism, publishing ethics, and duplication in high schools, colleges and universities, especially those programs associated with life and medical sciences. Do these higher institutes of learning not have courses in ethics 101? Something is seriously not tallying here. Either that, or they have never heard of ORI.

    JATdS

    June 25, 2013 at 3:43 pm

  2. Maybe I am underreacting, but the scenario that comes to mind is that some of the undergraduate assistants in the lab wanted to show off their work in a student-focused publication that nobody except their parents reads. If it was re-written for an undergraduate audience, that would essentially satisfy the editorial board at BIOS.

    Of course, they probably did violate the copyright agreement with Gene, which may have been the sticking point.

    stpnrazr

    June 25, 2013 at 4:15 pm

    • I am inclined to agree stpnrazr, there was no fake data, just very honest researchers being over enthusiastic and perhaps did ot realise they were not allowed to publish identical data in two papers.

      Lets be honest, how many introductions to papers from experienced researchers in the cardiac, respiratory or endocrinology field are very, very similar? Presumably that may be extended to all fields of research.

      Stewart

      June 25, 2013 at 6:01 pm


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