Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Archive for the ‘Ranjit Kumar Chandra’ Category

Nutrition researcher Chandra, who lost libel suit, charged with health care fraud

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R K Chandra

R K Chandra

A nutrition researcher with multiple retractions who unsuccessfully sued the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) for libel has been charged with defrauding a state health insurance plan.

The Toronto Star reports that a warrant has been issued for the arrest of Ranjit Kumar Chandra for billing the Ontario Health Insurance Plan for “services that were either not provided or billed inappropriately.” The charges do not appear to be related to his research: Chandra worked once a week as an allergist for the past four years, the Star reports, and the alleged fraud was at least $5,000. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

August 25th, 2016 at 9:30 am

Who is Ranjit Kumar Chandra? A timeline of notoriety

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R K Chandra

R K Chandra

Last month, Ranjit Kumar Chandra was denied an extension to file an appeal of his lawsuit against the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). It seemed to mark the end of a long fall for the self-proclaimed “father of nutritional immunology,” who has ended up with multiple high-profile retractions and on the wrong end of a costly libel lawsuit.

The case had a lot of twists and turns, however. So for your convenience, we’ve compiled a timeline of everything you need to know about the events that led up to the lawsuit — where it all began, and how it ended last July, when the Ontario Superior Court of Justice ruled in favor of the CBC, and the apparent epilogue this June.

In the 1980s, Chandra was a highly regarded nutrition researcher; in 1989, he was made a member of the Order of Canada. He authored over 200 papers during his time at Memorial University of Newfoundland. He has referred to himself as the “father of nutritional immunology,” but the link to his website no longer appears to be active.

Here’s how it all fell apart: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Michael Koziol

July 26th, 2016 at 9:30 am

Nutrition researcher loses two more papers after misconduct findings come to light

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R K Chandra, self-proclaimed father of nutritional immunology (from www.drrkchandra.com)

R K Chandra, self-proclaimed father of nutritional immunology (from www.drrkchandra.com)

The self-proclaimed “father of nutritional immunology,” Ranjit Kumar Chandra, has lost two more papers following the release of a misconduct investigation report by his former employer, Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN).

The report was released last year after Chandra lost his libel suit against the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC). The newly retracted papers were both published in Nutrition ResearchOn one, the author is listed as “Amrit Jain,” who is allegedly Chandra, as well.

Here’s the retraction notice for the article by Amrit Jain

Read the rest of this entry »

Lancet retracts 24-year-old paper by “father of nutritional immunology” after reopening inquiry

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lancetFollowing questions from outside experts, a retraction of a related paper, a university investigation and a court case, The Lancet has decided to retract a 1992 paper by Ranjit Kumar Chandra, the self-proclaimed “father of nutritional immunology.

In a lengthy retraction note included in the January 30 issue, the journal explains that:

the balance of probabilities in our judgment is that the reliability of the 1992 Lancet paper by Chandra can no longer be assured.

Chandra is objecting to the retraction.

This retraction was a long time coming, so sit back and relax as we fill in the backstory. Read the rest of this entry »

After lawsuit, university releases misconduct report about nutrition researcher Chandra

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R K Chandra

R K Chandra, self-proclaimed father of nutritional immunology (from www.drrkchandra.com)

Memorial University in Canada has released a five-year-old report of an investigation, confirming a former nutrition professor had committed misconduct in a 2001 paper.

The 53-page report — about Ranjit Kumar Chandra, a prominent and once-lauded researcher — focuses on a Nutrition paper that examined the effectiveness of vitamins patented by Chandra. The report, authored by MUN professor emeritus William Pryse-Phillips, lists 41 problems with the paper, which it concludes:

…was not in full compliance with the scientific, ethical, and/or integrity standards of Memorial University at the time.

The paper was retracted in 2005; the report is dated 2009. We asked Pryse-Phillips why the university took so long to release it. He told us:

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Shannon Palus

December 2nd, 2015 at 3:52 pm

After court verdict, BMJ retracts 26-year-old paper

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downloadToday, The BMJ retracted a 1989 paper about the role of breastfeeding and formula in infant eczema — 20 years after the data were called into question by a university report.

However, the report was kept secret — due, by some accounts, to alleged threats of a lawsuit. That is, until this year, when author Ranjit Kumar Chandra — who once dubbed himself the “father of nutritional immunology” — lost a $132 million libel case. That case, against the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) for airing a three-part documentary series on allegations of fraud against Chandra, pushed the report by his former employer Memorial University of Newfoundland into the public domain.

At 26 years, the BMJ retraction is a runner up for the longest amount of time a journal has taken to retract a paper. (We know of another retraction that was 27 years in the making, and a scientist who requested the retraction of some passages of a 1955 article in 2007, after the article became fodder for creationists.)

Here’s the first part of the retraction note:

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Shannon Palus

October 28th, 2015 at 7:30 pm

Nutrition researcher Chandra loses libel case against CBC

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CBCThe self-proclaimed “father of nutritional immunology,” Ranjit Kumar Chandra, has lost a libel lawsuit against the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC).

The suit was in response to a 2006 three-part documentary from the CBC, which examined allegations of fraud against the former Memorial University researcher.

After the 58-day trial, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice “ruled in favour of CBC, on the grounds that the words in the broadcast were true,” according to CBC producer Lynn Burgess: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Shannon Palus

July 31st, 2015 at 10:21 am