Archive for the ‘springer retractions’ Category
A nearly ten-year-long series of investigations into a pair of plant physiologists who received millions in funding from the U.S. National Science Foundation has resulted in debarments of less than two years for each of the researchers.
The NSF Office of Inspector General recently posted its close-out report on its decision and a review of the University’s investigation, which had recommended a total of eight retractions or corrections. Although the investigator’s names have been redacted, the text of retractions and corrections quoted in the report corresponds to papers by Read the rest of this entry »
Journals have retracted three out of the four papers flagged by the Office of Research Integrity during its investigation of a University of Oregon neuroscience student, David Anderson.
Last month, when we first reported on the case, Anderson told us that he “made an error in judgment,” and took “full responsibility.” Two of the retraction notes say that Anderson “knowingly falsified data,” and cited the Office of Research Integrity case summary.
All three papers focus on memory.
The note for the first retraction, from the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, reveals exactly how Anderson falsified data in the paper. It’s paywalled — tsk, tsk — but printed here in full:
Read the rest of this entry »
The original text is not online. The note in its place reads, in full:
This article has been retracted due to unintended publication.
The author of the editorial is psychologist Erik Hollnagel, based at the University of Southern Denmark, who left the journal after a decade. Interestingly, his own research includes studies of “When Things Go Wrong” (per the title of one of his book chapters), ranging from financial crises to the Fukushima disaster.
The error that led to this reaction seems tiny, in comparison. Hollnagel explains:
A 2002 paper that investigates a kind of equation used to describe physical systems has been “has been detected to be a case of plagiarism.”
Here’s the abstract of the Journal of Applied Mathematics and Physics (Zeitschrift für angewandte Mathematik und Physik) article, “Some blow-up results for a generalized Ginzburg-Landau equation,”
We investigate the blow-up of the solution to a complex Ginzburg-Landau like equation in u coupled with a Poisson equation in ϕ defined on the whole space ℝn, n=1 or 2.
What did this paper plagiarize from? Read the rest of this entry »
The “nearly identical” papers came to our attention via a retraction in Inflammation. Editor in chief Bruce Cronstein explained how he learned of the mass duplication:
The editors were contacted en masse by somebody doing a Cochrane Review on hypertension and who noticed that the content of the 6 papers was nearly identical. Frankly, not one of us would have noticed otherwise.
Another of those papers, in the European Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences, has also been retracted. That note is similar to the retraction notice for the Inflammation paper, both of which have been cited twice:
This is officially becoming a trend: Springer is pulling another 64 articles from 10 journals after finding evidence of faked peer reviews, bringing the total number of retractions from the phenomenon north of 230.
Given that there have been about 1,500 papers retracted overall since 2012, when we first reported on the phenomenon, faked reviews have been responsible for about 15% of all retractions in the past three years.
This isn’t the first time Springer has faced the issue. As owner of the BioMed Central journals, it issued 43 retractions for faked reviews earlier this year.
A pair of papers about the risks of titanium dioxide nanoparticles that share many of the same authors has been retracted from a toxicology journal following an investigation at Soochow University in China.
Particle and Fibre Toxicology is retracting the papers for problems with the statistical methods and missing data, as well as for sharing figures.
Biotechnology Letters has retracted a paper on a new gene delivery technique due to “the deliberate and fraudulent use of data in the paper that had previously appeared in other papers of these two authors.”
I can say that a person who was familiar with the work of Dr Sarkar got in touch with about their concerns about her publications and, in particular, her paper published in Biotechnology Letters. They supplied a dossier of her publications showing the obvious duplications of figures and that she had been using the same figures in different papers to illustrate the results from supposedly different experiments.
He found that, indeed, multiple figures in the Biotechnology Letters had appeared in other publications of Sarkar’s, some prior to the paper’s October 2013 publication, and one after. The details are in the whole retraction note:
Read the rest of this entry »
Editors at BioMed Central have taken the unusual step of updating a retraction notice after an investigation found the authors were not responsible for a peer review process gone awry. The paper is one of dozens of other papers retracted in March for fake peer reviews.
That month, the paper “Clinical application of contrast enhanced ultrasound to diagnose benign prostatic hyperplasia” in Diagnostic Pathology was among the 43 papers retracted due to fake peer reviews. (Retractions for the phenomenon — more about it in our Nature feature here — are up to about 170.)
According to the update posted in July, an investigation into the paper by the Jiading Central Hospital in Shanghai, where the authors work, found that they “did not participate in influencing the peer review process.”
Here’s more from the update to the notice: