Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Archive for the ‘image manipulation’ Category

Image issues force retraction of liver transplant papers

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ajtranspA group of researchers in Hong Kong and China have lost a pair of papers on liver transplantation after concerns were raised about the “origin of images” in the two studies.

The articles appeared in the American Journal of Transplantation in January and February of 2006, and came from the lab of S. T. Fan, of the University of Hong Kong. When the authors were asked about the images, they “were unable to satisfactorily mitigate the concerns.”

According to this bio from the journal Hepatobiliary Surgery and Nutrition, Fan: Read the rest of this entry »

Investigation ends in 6th retraction for Voinnet

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PLOS PathogensA sixth paper co-authored by plant researcher Olivier Voinnet has been retracted by PLOS Pathogens “following an investigation into concerns.”

The investigation found “several band duplications” in one figure provided by fifth author, Patrice Dunoyer, who took it from “the Master thesis of a former student working under his supervision, without the prior consultation or consent of this student,” according to the notice. There was also an incorrect “loading control” in another figure, attributed to first author Raphael Sansregret and last author Kamal Bouarab. 

Voinnet and Bouarab, the study’s corresponding authors, took full responsibility for “the publication of this erroneous paper.”

Although investigators found that the raw data in the duplicated figure backed up its conclusions, “given the nature and extent of data manipulation,” the authors asked the journal to retract the paper .

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Author objects to retraction for not “faithfully represented” immunology figures

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The Journal of ImmunologyAll but one of the authors of a study about the immune response to H. pylori have agreed to a retraction in The Journal of Immunology, due to two of the paper’s figures not being “faithfully represented.”

Authors of the 2006 paper said they were unable to provide the original unedited scans “due to inadequate archiving dating back almost 10 years.” The authors — with the exception of the first author, Sushil Kumar Pathak, apologized for the error.

The notice, which has been appended to the pdf, reads:

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Mirror image in plant study flagged on PubPeer grows into retraction

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djs_mpmi_28_9_cover-online.inddA 2010 paper on plant fungus has been retracted after a comment on PubPeer revealed that a study image had been flipped over and reused to represent two different treatments.

In May, a commenter pointed out the plants in Figure 2a of the paper in the journal Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions “look remarkably similar.” A commenter writing under the name of corresponding author, Yukio Tosa at Kobe University in Japan, posted a response two days later agreeing with the assessment and stating that the paper should be retracted.

The notice reads: Read the rest of this entry »

Fourth retraction for Einstein oncologist due to image manipulations

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home_cover (1)Two papers on a potential cancer drug have been retracted following an investigation that found “inappropriate manipulation of bands in gels.”

This makes four retractions by our count for Roman Perez-Soler, an oncologist at the Einstein College of Medicine, and for co-author Yi-He Ling, whose current affiliation is unknown.

Their previous two retractions, which we reported on in 2013, were also for image manipulation. At the time, Perez-Soler told us that Ling “accepted full responsibility for the changes” and he had “returned to his home country.”

The fresh retraction notes, from Molecular Pharmacology, provide a few specifics about the figures that were manipulated this time around.

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Investigation leads to retraction of breast cancer paper, second for one author

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Journal of Biological Chemistry.coverThe authors of a Journal of Biological Chemistry paper on a breast cancer gene are withdrawing it following an investigation at Roswell Park Cancer Institute that found a figure contained “manipulated” data.

Last author Toru Ouchi is based at Roswell in the department of cancer genetics.

Second to last author Sam W. Lee, at Massachusetts General Hospital, lost a Molecular Cell paper in 2013 after some figures were “inappropriately manipulated.”

Here’s the withdrawal note from JBC (which, unusually — but happily so — includes some explanation of what’s wrong with the paper): Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Alison McCook

September 4th, 2015 at 2:30 pm

Stem cell researcher Jacob Hanna’s correction count updated to 10

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Jacob Hanna

Jacob Hanna

Thanks to some eagle-eyed readers, we’ve been alerted to some corrections for high profile stem cell scientist Jacob Hanna that we had missed, bringing our count to one retraction and 13 errata on 10 papers.

The problems in the work range from duplications of images, to inadvertent deletions in figures, to failures by his co-authors to disclose funding sources or conflicts of interest. Hanna is the first or last author on 4 of the papers, and one of several on the rest.

First up, a correction to a Cell paper on which Hanna is the first author:

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Retraction of grizzly bear-diabetes study follows departure of Amgen scientist for data manipulation

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The retracted paper made the cover of the August 2014 issue of the journal.

A study that looked to hibernating bears to understand the mechanisms behind diabetes has been retracted because an author based at the biotech company Amgen “manipulated specific experimental data” in two figures.

According to the The Wall Street JournalAmgen discovered the manipulation while reviewing the data following publication of the paper,”Grizzly bears exhibit augmented insulin sensitivity while obese prior to a reversible insulin resistance during hibernation.” Published in Cell Metabolism last year, the paper has been cited 8 times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.

A press release from the journal last year — coverage in Science and Nature followed — explained the purpose of the study:

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Written by Shannon Palus

September 2nd, 2015 at 9:30 am

Investigation digs up data falsification in two papers on roundworm stress

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18.coverAn investigation at the University of Florida has led to the retraction of a pair of papers on the stress responses of Caenorhabditis elegans in Molecular and Cellular Biology.

One paper has been retracted, and one “partially” retracted, as the main conclusion was “not compromised.” According to the retraction notes, the investigation found the data were “falsified” by first author Chi Leung, a former postdoc at UF.

Here’s the note in full for the partial retraction of “A Negative-Feedback Loop between the Detoxification/Antioxidant Response Factor SKN-1 and Its Repressor WDR-23 Matches Organism Needs with Environmental Conditions:”

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EMBO investigation yields two more retractions and three corrections for Voinnet

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Olivier Voinnet

Olivier Voinnet

An investigation into the work of Olivier Voinnet by The EMBO Journal has led to another two retractions and three more corrections for the high-profile plant scientist, now suspended from the CNRS for two years.

According to the authors, Voinnet was responsible for some of the errors; all papers have been questioned on PubPeer.

The EMBO J, the flagship publication of the European Molecular Biology Organization, posted four notices earlier today and told Retraction Watch that the notice for the fifth paper would be posted by tomorrow.

This latest round brings our count for Voinnet up to Read the rest of this entry »