Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Cancer biologist stops research as his retraction count rises to 13

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Anil Jaiswal

A cancer biologist based at the University of Maryland is transitioning out of research, as a journal has retracted three more of his papers.

Anil Jaiswal has now lost 13 papers, including, as we reported on February 6, six retractions issued earlier this month.

The Baltimore Sun reported this week that Jaiswal would no longer be conducting research at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, which we confirmed from a spokesperson:

He has been a research-scientist here for the past 9 1/2 years. However, he is now transitioning out of research.

Jaiswal’s latest retractions were issued by the Journal of Cell Science. The notices for all three papers — on which Jaiswal was corresponding author — mention an investigation by the University of Maryland, Baltimore. One notice says the first author does not agree with the retraction; another notice says none of the authors agree with the journal’s decision.

Let’s start with that paper, “Oncogene PKCε controls INrf2–Nrf2 interaction in normal and cancer cells through phosphorylation of INrf2,” which has been cited twice since it was published in 2013, according to Clarivate Analytics’ Web of Science, formerly part of Thomson Reuters. Here’s more information from the journal about why it decided to retract it:

Journal of Cell Science was alerted by readers to potential image manipulation and reuse in papers published in the journal by Dr Anil K. Jaiswal, the corresponding author. An investigation was conducted by the author’s institution, the University of Maryland, Baltimore.

Following their assessment, the University of Maryland, Baltimore, concluded that the above-named publication had been compromised as follows, and requested that it be retracted:

“Figures 1, 2, 3C, 4 and 6E: Excel files appear to show that data from a single subject (3 samples from each) were presented as data from 3 independent subjects (Figures 3C, 6E). At least in one case, a single datum is presented as an average of several data points (Figure 6E). In addition, Figure 1 (panels C to E), 2 (panels A to C) and 4 (panels B & E) all show clear evidence that bands on the depicted gels were digitally spliced so as to remove certain blots. As presented, the figures do not support the claim that data are averages of independent samples.”

The authors do not agree to this retraction.

Next, here’s the notice for “Antioxidant-induced modification of INrf2 cysteine 151 and PKC-δ-mediated phosphorylation of Nrf2 serine 40 are both required for stabilization and nuclear translocation of Nrf2 and increased drug resistance,” cited 102 times since it appeared in 2009:

Journal of Cell Science was alerted by readers to potential image manipulation and reuse in papers published in the journal by Dr Anil K. Jaiswal, the corresponding author. An investigation was conducted by the author’s institution, the University of Maryland, Baltimore, during which they documented alleged irregularities in Figures 3A, 3C, 5A, 7C, 8D and 9B of the paper named above. The investigatory committee recommended that we retract the above paper.

The first author (Suryakant K. Niture) does not agree to this retraction.

Attempts on the part of the journal office to contact Abhinav K. Jain were unsuccessful.

That paper was corrected in 2010 to fix the text and label for figure 9B, flagged by the retraction notice.

Finally, here’s the retraction notice for the third paper, “Antioxidant-induced INrf2 (Keap1) tyrosine 85 phosphorylation controls the nuclear export and degradation of the INrf2–Cul3–Rbx1 complex to allow normal Nrf2 activation and repression:”

Journal of Cell Science was alerted by readers to potential image manipulation and reuse in papers published in the journal by Dr Anil K. Jaiswal, the corresponding author. An investigation was conducted by the author’s institution, the University of Maryland, Baltimore.

Following their assessment, the University of Maryland, Baltimore, concluded that the above-named publication had been compromised as follows, and requested that it be retracted:

“Data presented in this manuscript are duplicated and relabeled from data in Tyrosine phosphorylation controls nuclear export of Fyn, allowing Nrf2 activation of cytoprotective gene expression. Kaspar, J. W., Jaiswal, A. K. FASEB J. (2011) 25, 1076–87. Three western blots from Figure 2D in FASEB J. (2011) 25, 1076–87 are duplicated and relabeled as Figure 1C in J. Cell Sci. (2012) 125, 1027-38. Two western blots from FASEB J. (2011) 25, 1076–87, Figure 5D are duplicated and relabeled as Figure 6F in J. Cell Sci. (2012) 125, 1027-38. The figures do not support the analyses or the hypotheses.”

Attempts on the part of the journal office to contact James W. Kaspar were unsuccessful.

The 2012 paper has been cited 20 times.

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