Archive for the ‘romania’ Category
After a research group submitted two similar papers only days apart to different journals, one journal has retracted the paper — and told the other it should do the same.
The papers, by a group of authors based in Romania, describe a new polymer to stop the formation of biofilms. After a reader flagged the papers — which were submitted within eight days of each other in September, 2015 — as being similar, a journal has retracted one, and recommended the other journal retract the second. Although the second journal told us it planned to flag the paper with a notice alerting readers to the duplication, the notice has not yet appeared online.
The journal that issued the retraction — the International Journal of Polymer Analysis and Characterization (IJPAC) — called it a “a clear case of self-plagiarism,” according to the notice:
Journals have retracted two papers after they were flagged by a pseudonymous blogger, who suspected all had copied text from other sources.
What’s more, a third paper seems to have simply disappeared from the journal’s website, after the blogger, Neuroskeptic, alerted the journal to the text overlap.
Neuroskeptic became suspicious about the three unrelated papers – about food chemistry, heart disease, and the immune system and cancer – after scanning them with plagiarism software. After alerting the journals, two issued formal retractions for the papers – but neither specifies plagiarism as the reason.
The retractions were the result of a larger project, Neuroskeptic told us:
Here’s a strange one: We discovered a paper about an antibiotic-resistant strain of bacteria that bore two retraction notices, and each provided a different reason for retraction. One alleged misconduct; that notice still appears now. The other — which has since disappeared — said the paper was submitted by mistake.
“In vitro effect of boric acid and calcium fructoborate esters against methicillinresistant Staphylococcus aureus strain” was published in the South-Western Journal of Horticulture, Biology and Environment. The full text isn’t available on the journal’s website.
Since April, the Romanian Journal of Internal Medicine (RJIM) retracted nine papers (eight for plagiarism, one for duplication); four of these were co-authored by Manole Cojocaru, a researcher at the Titu Maiorescu University (TMU) in Bucharest, Romania. Subsequently, the journal has banned Cojocaru from submitting manuscripts, and has also informed the ethics committee at his institution.
We first came across on the now-retracted paper in the International Journal of Obesity (IJO) in April when we reported on the authors’ other retraction in Diabetes. The 2014 paper had a corrigendum, published the same year, and also for image-related issues. Since then, however, the journal has pulled the IJO paper and its associated corrigendum at the request of the French National Institute of Agronomic Research (INRA) in Paris. Read the rest of this entry »
A pair of researchers affiliated with the University of Galati in Romania were suspended after duplicating work in their papers on materials used to build ships, earning them four retractions last year, and one the year before.
According to Romanian newspaper Impact Est, in December an ethics committee found that co-authors Ionel Chirica and Elena-Felicia Beznea committed “a number of breaches of ethics,” including self-plagiarism. Both received two-year suspensions from holding certain research positions.
These aren’t the only problems Chirica has faced: In 2013, he resigned from his position as the director of the Doctoral School of Engineering, according to Impact Est, for reasons that are unclear. In 2012, he also lost two additional papers on which he is the sole author.
Last fall, Computational Materials Science retracted four papers by Chirica and Beznea, publishing almost identical notices. We’ll start with the one for “Response of ship hull laminated plates to close proximity blast loads:”
A paper linking the fecal microbiome to obesity has been retracted after it became clear that one of the co-authors faked some of the data.
The 2014 paper in Diabetes — which found that rats given fecal transplants from obese mice were more likely to become obese themselves if given a particular diet — was pulled after after an institutional investigation found a co-author guilty of falsifying data underlying one figure and fabricating the data of two others.
Co-author Yassine Sakar — formerly based at the French National Institute of Agronomic Research (INRA) in Paris, France — was found responsible for the misconduct. But an official from the institution said that some responsibility must also be shared by the corresponding author Mihai Covosa, who has since resigned from the institution.
The retraction follows criticism from a Romanian blogger, who contacted the journal about several issues, and posted communications she received about the paper, “Sustainability of Social Enterprises: A Discourse Analysis.” It was part of a volume of Procedia Economics and Finance from a 2014 conference, “Economic Scientific Research – Theoretical, Empirical and Practical Approaches,” also known as ESPERA 2014.
According to the paper, peer review was
under responsibility of the Scientific Committee of ESPERA 2014.
Apparently, the peer review process missed a few errors. The retraction note explains:
The crackdown is occurring after a surge in jail literature in the last two years— approximately 200 inmates have authored around 400 scientific works — according to figures recently released by the Romanian Ministry of Justice.
Although the law has existed since 1969, only four such scientific papers were published until 2010 (one each year from 2007). The numbers have, however, since escalated to Read the rest of this entry »
Here’s what Beall wrote about the paper on December 16:
The article is entitled “Basic Principles Underlying Human Physiology” , and you don’t have to be a scientist to know that it’s junk, for it is a manifestation of AIDS denialism. The conclusion’s first paragraph says,
HIV is not etiologically involved in AIDS. It is just a common retrovirus found in AIDS conjuncturally. There is only AIDS that may not be strictly associated neither to a primary immune deficiency nor to an acquired immune deficiency. Actually, heart failure represents the causal factor of AIDS and many other “primary” immune deficiencies (p. 1821).