Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Archive for the ‘oncogene (journal)’ Category

A university asked for numerous retractions. Eight months later, three journals have done nothing.

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Anil Jaiswal

When journals learn papers are problematic, how long does it take them to act?

We recently had a chance to find out as part of our continuing coverage of the case of Anil Jaiswal at the University of Maryland, who’s retracted 15 papers (including two new ones we recently identified), and has transitioned out of cancer research. Here’s what happened.

As part of a public records request related to the investigation, we received letters that the University of Maryland sent to 11 journals regarding 26 “compromised” papers co-authored by Jaiswal, four of which had been retracted by the time of the letter. The letters were dated between August and September 2016 (and one in February) — although, in some cases, the journals told us they received the letter later. Since that date, three journals have retracted nine papers and corrected another, waiting between four and six months to take action. One journal published an editorial note of concern within approximately two months after the university letter.

And six journals have not taken any public action.

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Huh? Cancer paper gets retracted because of its correction

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Here’s a rather odd case: When readers raised issues about some of the images in a 2008 cancer paper, the authors issued a correction last year. But when readers asked additional questions about the corrected images, the authors decided to retract the paper entirely, along with its correction.

Both the original and corrected versions were questioned on PubPeer.

Here’s the retraction notice for the 2008 article “PRIMA-1MET induces mitochondrial apoptosis through activation of caspase-2,” published in Oncogene, which includes a link to the July 2016 correction: Read the rest of this entry »

Cancer research pioneer Robert Weinberg corrected Oncogene paper

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onc_cimageRobert Weinberg, a prominent cancer researcher at the Whitehead Institute, issued a correction to a paper in Oncogene in May, fixing two errors missed during proofing.

We found this one a little late, obviously. It also appears to be a relatively minor correction, not one that appears worthy of retraction. We’ve gotten feedback from readers asking why we cover corrections; we chose to flag this one because Weinberg has had such an impact on his field — he discovered the first tumor-causing gene in humans, as well as the first tumor-suppressor gene — and his papers are often highly cited. He also has issued five retractions in the past, most of which for papers whose first author was a member of his lab, who is not a co-author on the Oncogene paper.

Here’s the correction note for “Thrombospondin-1 repression is mediated via distinct mechanisms in fibroblasts and epithelial cells:”

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Written by Shannon Palus

December 14th, 2015 at 11:30 am

MD Anderson researcher Aggarwal up to six corrections

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cover (2)A highly cited cancer researcher at MD Anderson has notched three major corrections, all associated with problems in figures. One note cites “human error” as the cause.

Bharat Aggarwal is the last author on all three papers. He is now up to six corrections, two unexplained withdrawals, and two Expressions of Concern. He’s also threatened to sue us in the past, and has told us that his institution has been looking into his work.

Only one note specifies that the correction does not affect the paper’s conclusions.

First up: “Inhibition of growth and survival of human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma cells by curcumin via modulation of nuclear factor-κB signaling,” published in the International Journal of Cancer and cited 168 times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge. The issues span two figures, according to the erratum note:

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Oncogene to retract breast cancer paper following years-old misconduct investigation

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Oncogene is retracting a 2010 paper on the molecular details of breast cancer cells as they undergo metastasis following an investigation that discovered the first author had committed misconduct.

The thing is, the investigation concluded in 2012, and the paper — “miR-661 expression in SNAI1-induced epithelial to mesenchymal transition contributes to breast cancer cell invasion by targeting Nectin-1 and StarD10 messengers” — isn’t being retracted until next week.

According to Lucinda Haines, senior publishing manager at Nature Publishing Group, the paper will be retracted June 29.

We heard from Iris Behrmann, Head of the Life Sciences Research Unit at the University of Luxembourg:

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Fudged figures sink breast cancer paper

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oncogeneA prestigious cancer journal has pulled an article over “concerns” regarding some of the figures, which PubPeer commenters had tagged as suspect.

A few weeks after the paper was published on June 9, comments on PubPeer began accumulating. Commenters called out both potentially manipulated and repeated images. The exact timeline is not clear, because Oncogene does not list a date on the retraction notice, but by August 29 the paper had been retracted.

Here’s the notice for “IL-6 secreted by cancer-associated fibroblasts induces tamoxifen resistance in luminal breast cancer,” by researchers at Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine and Ruijin Hospital, both in Shanghai, China, and the University of Michigan: Read the rest of this entry »

UT-Southwestern cancer researchers up to 8 retractions

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oncogeneA group at the University of Texas Southwestern led by Adi F. Gazdar that found evidence of inappropriate image manipulation in a number of their papers has retracted its seventh and eighth studies.

Here’s the notice for 2005’s “Aberrant methylation profile of human malignant mesotheliomas and its relationship to SV40 infection,” in Oncogene: Read the rest of this entry »

Brutal honesty: Author takes to PubPeer to announce retraction — and tells us she’ll lose PhD, professorship

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Eriko Suzuki

Eriko Suzuki

Over the past week, there have been a number of comments on PubPeer — a site of which we’re big fans — about a 2007 paper in Oncogene.

The comments suggested that the figures in the paper had problems. Some bands seemed to be duplicated, and one of the images looked very much like that of another paper.

Then, today, first author Eriko Suzuki left this comment: Read the rest of this entry »

Shigeaki Kato up to 23 retractions

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katoShigeaki Kato, the former University of Tokyo endocrinology researcher found to have manipulated images in dozens of papers, has six more retractions, bringing his total to 23.

Five of them appear in Molecular and Cellular Biology: Read the rest of this entry »

Lifted figure prompts retraction of Oncogene paper by Roman-Gomez

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onc_cimageThe journal Oncogene has retracted a 2005 paper from a group led by Jose Roman-Gomez, a Spanish researcher who appears to be a serial image manipulator/misappropriator.

The article, “Promoter hypomethylation of the LINE-1 retrotransposable elements activates sense/antisense transcription and marks the progression of chronic myeloid leukemia,” was published online in September 2005 and has been cited 106 times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.

Now comes this: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by amarcus41

February 8th, 2013 at 11:00 am