Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Author from China blames translation company for plagiarism in retracted vascular paper

with 2 comments

apjcpDo we need a “throwing vendors under the bus” category here at Retraction Watch?

Earlier this year, we reported on the retraction of a paper because of sloppy work by an outside lab. Now, we have the story of a retraction for “negligence” by a translator. Specifically, the author says the passages shared between the retracted 2015 vascular paper and another paper in EMBO Journal are a result of “negligence on the part of the translation company that I trusted to make my manuscript ready for submission.”

Here’s more from the notice in the Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention, written by Yong Jiang, of Laboratory Medical College, Jilin Medical College, China:

At my request the paper entitled ‘The Expression of MRTF-A and AQP1 Play Important Roles in the Pathological Vascular Remodeling’ Asian Pac J Cancer Prev, 16, 1375-83 has been retracted. The reason was a charge of plagiarism with regard to the paper entitled ‘Reciprocal expression of MRTF-A and myocardin is crucial for pathological vascular remodelling in mice’ published earlier in EMBO Journal (EMBO J. 2012 Nov 28;31(23):4428-40. doi: 10.1038/emboj.2012.296. Epub 2012 Oct 26.). I am very sorry that this occurred but I sincerely believe this was due to negligence on the part of the translation company that I trusted to make my manuscript ready for submission.

One of Jiang’s papers in Scientific Reports was subject to a series of corrections in March, including removing four authors (and adding another) — it’s hard to imagine how a translation company might be responsible for that.

We’ve contacted Jiang and the editors for comment, and will update with anything we learn.

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  • Ray Collins April 23, 2015 at 10:25 am

    Having edited English translations for their technical content from 1991-2010, I can tell you there is a possibility that the author speaks the truth. I personally have returned work to translators who have block copied and pasted work from a previous translation they had done themselves or found on the Internet, even though the content of the source language material was different. The translators either thought I wouldn’t notice or they didn’t notice themselves that somewhat similar content was indeed different.

  • Yurii Chinenov April 23, 2015 at 2:24 pm

    It is uncommon, but I agree with Ray. I Have seen another related problem. An author put english snippets from a review into a chinese text as a reference for a translator. These snippets were appropriately marked by the authors. Yet somehow following translation some of those have lost quotation marks and made it into a final text. Needless to say some serious weeding out had to happen after this “translation”.

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