Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Archive for the ‘china retractions’ Category

Materials science paper yanked over data pilfering

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materials lettersMaterials Letters has withdrawn an article in press after the editor found out the first author, Yan Li, had taken all the data without permission.

According to the notice, the senior author told the journal that the data came from the lab Li used to work in at the University of Rome Tor Vergata, but the P.I. in Italy didn’t know about the paper.

From the notice: Read the rest of this entry »

Cry me a retraction: Scientists pull Cry protein paper for irreproducibility

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world journal of microbialA paper on the biological insecticide Cry protein — most famously produced by genetically modified “Bt” corn — has been retracted because the authors couldn’t reproduce the findings.

The initial paper concluded that their modified gene produced a Cry protein that was significantly more toxic than the one currently spliced into food crops to make them resistant to moths, beetles, and other insects. However, when repeating the experiments, the modified proteins weren’t any more deadly than the original version.

Here is the notice: Read the rest of this entry »

Conflict of interest, figure issues net retraction for cancer paper

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am j pathologyTwo major problems sunk this cancer paper.

For one, many of the images were copied from another paper. In addition, one of the authors did not disclose that he was the president of a related company, nor that his company provided reagents for the experiments.

It’s not clear when the paper was published, but The paper was published on October 16, 2014, and a withdrawal notice went up on January 16, 2015. Here’s the retraction for “Enhanced Detection and Phenotypic and Karyotypic in Situ Characterization of Circulating Tumor Cells”: Read the rest of this entry »

Lancet retracts and republishes cardiology paper with admirable notice

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logo_lancetOne of the papers from a massive heart disease study in China, published in the Lancet, has been retracted and republished after the authors noticed a statistical error.

The article, by authors from Peking Union Medical College in China, Yale University, and elsewhere, presented the results of the China PEACE-Retrospective Acute Myocardial Infarction Study, part of a national initiative to study and improve care for cardiac problems. After being posted online on June 24, 2014, the authors noticed that they’d incorrectly weighed one of the cities in their calculations, which threw off a number of national estimates.

After the corrections were made, the paper was peer-reviewed again, and reviewers stated that despite the mistakes, the original conclusions were sound.

Today is a banner day on Retraction Watch: This is our second excellent example of transparency in 24 hours, and therefore the second entry in our “doing the right thing” category. An editorial lays out exactly what happened, including a timeline, allowing scientists to feel confident they’re basing the next research step on solid and accurate data. (We also appreciate the hat tip to the Committee on Publication Ethics retraction guidelines, which we often send out to editors of bad notices as a gentle reminder.)

Here’s the notice for “ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction in China from 2001 to 2011 (the China PEACE-Retrospective Acute Myocardial Infarction Study): a retrospective analysis of hospital data”: Read the rest of this entry »

“The main improvements reported are invalid”: Quantum communication paper retracted

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scientificreportsA paper on quantum communication has been retracted for failing to address several important problems, making the conclusions invalid.

Quantum communication involves sending a series of photons in specific quantum states over fiberoptic cables. It’s a little like the 1s and 0s of traditional computing, but much more secure. If the photons are intercepted on their way to the intended target, the quantum states will change, and the recipients can know their information was accessed by other parties. This is especially interesting to governments with a lot of secret information to transmit: both China and the U.S. have programs to develop these networks.

The retracted paper was a discussion of how to efficiently send lots of quantum information from different sources through the same fiberoptic cables at once.

Here’s the notice for “Efficient Quantum Transmission in Multiple-Source Networks”: Read the rest of this entry »

New favorite plagiarism euphemism: “Inadvertently copied text”

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biodata miningPlagiarism earned genomics researchers an erratum, not a retraction, in BioMed Central journal BioData Mining.

We keep a list of best euphemisms for plagiarism, and this one is right up there.

Here’s the notice for “An iteration normalization and test method for differential expression analysis of RNA-seq data”: Read the rest of this entry »

Far from earth-shatteringly new: Plagiarism topples Chinese quake paper

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scientificreportsA group of scientists at the Chinese Earthquake Administration in Beijing have lost their 2014 paper in Nature Scientific Reports for lifting chunks of text from a previously published article.

The abstract of the paper, “Early magnitude estimation for the MW7.9 Wenchuan earthquake using progressively expanded P-wave time window,” states: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by amarcus41

January 26th, 2015 at 9:30 am

“Immorally” affecting the literature: Authors blame sloppy work from an outside lab for retraction

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SpandidosA group of Chinese researchers has retracted a paper, saying that an outside lab switched their immunofluorescent stains with another research group’s.

The group has decided to repeat the experiments on their own next time.

Here’s the notice in Molecular Medicine Reports for “Protective role of Klotho on cardiomyocytes upon hypoxia/reoxygenation via downregulation of Akt and FOXO1 phosphorylation”: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

January 23rd, 2015 at 11:00 am

A ewe-turn: Researchers lose sleep, and paper, over miscounted sheep

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Suspicious sheep via John Haslam

Suspicious sheep via John Haslam

A group of Chinese cardiologists at Capital Medical University have done a quick ewe-turn, pulling a paper after mixing up both the author order and wrongly reporting how many sheep were killed in the making of this experiment.

We covered another retraction from the CMU cardiology department in September. The sheep paper was published in October.

Here’s the notice for “Mosaic tissue-engineered porcine pulmonary artery valved conduit: long-term follow-up after implantation in an ovine model”: Read the rest of this entry »

Fake peer review fells two more papers

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Written by Ivan Oransky

January 2nd, 2015 at 9:30 am