Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

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University, funding agency clear researcher Rui Curi of fraud charges

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Rui Curi

Rui Curi

The University of São Paulo and Brazil’s National Council of Technological and Scientific Development funding agency (CNPq) have cleared a researcher of fraud following a six-month investigation.

The CNPq’s Commission on Integrity in Scientific Activity noted, however, that “there was failure to exercise rigor in the conduct and dissemination of results [in Rui Curi’s work], essential to quality research.” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

August 4th, 2013 at 10:06 am

A mega-correction for Rui Curi, whose lawyers threatened to sue

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plos oneA Brazilian researcher whose legal threats helped lead to the shutdown of and who has had two papers retracted has had to correct another paper.

The fourth correction for Rui Curi — and we’d call it a mega-correction — is of a paper in PLOS ONE. Curi is the fourth out of 11 authors; someone named Tania Pithon-Curi is the final author:
Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

June 7th, 2013 at 11:00 am

Streisand Effect meets tough editors as journal retracts already-corrected paper by Rui Curi

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curiRui Curi — the Brazilian scientist who threatened to sue the now-shuttered site for criticizing his work — has rung up his second retraction, this one for a paper that he corrected earlier this year.

Here’s the Journal of Endocrinology notice, whose headers and language are a bit confusing, understandably, because it is retracting two things, a correction and the original paper: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

April 29th, 2013 at 11:00 am

Another correction for Rui Curi, whose legal threats helped force shutdown of Science Fraud site

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joeThe Journal of Endocrinology has run a correction for a paper by Rui Curi, the Brazilian scientist whose lawyers threatened after the site ran a number of posts critical of Curi’s work.

Here’s the notice for “Non-esterified fatty acids and human lymphocyte death: a mechanism that involves calcium release and oxidative stress”: Read the rest of this entry »

Curi-us: Author whose lawyers threatened Science Fraud corrects a paper the site criticized

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Rui Curi

A few weeks ago, we reported on the shutdown of, a site dedicated to highlighting problems with scientific papers, thanks to legal threats. At the same time, we noted that Rui Curi, one of the authors whose work had been questioned — and whose lawyers had sent the site a cease-and-desist letter — ended up retracting a paper the site had questioned.

Now, Curi has corrected another paper that featured on Here’s the notice: for “Comparative toxicity of oleic and linoleic acid on human lymphocytes,” which was originally published in Life Science in 2006: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

January 23rd, 2013 at 2:08 pm

Researcher logs three retractions for image duplications — two of which with familiar co-authors

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A researcher in Brazil is taking responsibility for accidentally mixing up images in three papers in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. 

The corresponding author on the three papers told us the mistake happened because the studies were conducted simultaneously, and relied on one computer.

There’s a side note to these retractions: The co-author list on two papers includes names that should be fairly well-known to our readers — Mario Saad, the researcher who unsuccessfully sued the American Diabetes Association to stop retractions of his papers, and Rui Curi, a researcher whose legal threats assisted in the shutdown of This makes Saad’s ninth retraction.

According to the retraction notices, Lício Velloso  — who, like his co-authors, is based at the University of Campinas in São Paulo, Brazil — assembled all the figures. He told Retraction Watch that the authors initially wanted to correct the papers, adding: Read the rest of this entry »

Researcher who unsuccessfully sued journal to stop retractions earns another expression of concern

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Mario Saad

Mario Saad

A journal has added expressions of concern (EOCs) to four papers about diabetes, including one co-authored by an author who previously sued a different journal when it took a similar action on his papers.

The Journal of Physiology flagged the papers after an investigation “could not rule out the possibility” that they contained duplicated Western blots. Though the three other papers do not include Mario Saad on their author list, he plays a role: The papers include blots duplicated from other papers of Saad’s. And they reveal that Saad may have published those blots multiple times in his own work.

The EOCs all start out with the same statement: Read the rest of this entry »

PubPeer Selections: Retracted papers, published elsewhere

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Here’s another installment of PubPeer Selections: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

September 9th, 2014 at 11:30 am

Posted in pubpeer selections

Researcher who called plagiarism “the worst type of fraud” retracts paper for…plagiarism

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arq brasAs a reporter on the police beat many years ago, one of us (Adam) used to hang out with a press officer whose desk at the station had the following sign: “Uma boca fechado não recolhe nenhum pé.”

At least, that’s what it would have been had we been in Rio. In Palmer Park, Maryland, the sign read: “A Closed Mouth Gathers No Foot.”

A group of Brazilian researchers has retracted their 2009 article on gut bacteria for plagiarism — but not before one of them decried such behavior as the nadir of scientific misconduct. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by amarcus41

January 15th, 2014 at 9:30 am

University of Utah finds former faculty member guilty of misconduct because of “reckless disregard”

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utahSince last May, we’ve been reporting on a case at the University of Utah involving two retractions and two corrections. When the story first broke, the lab blamed a former worker for inappropriately removing data from the premises, and the university has been investigating. Last month, we reported that Ivana De Domenico, the junior faculty member who was first author on those papers, had left the university, and that senior author Jerry Kaplan had retired.

But the problems went beyond the four papers we reported on, as the Salt Lake Tribune reported on Friday. In a 9-page report provided to the Tribune, the panel overseeing the investigation details its examination of 11 papers. This is the first of six findings: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

August 5th, 2013 at 9:30 am