Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Archive for the ‘society journal retractions’ Category

JACS imaging paper “under editorial review”

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The Journal of the American Chemical Society has issued an expression of concern over “the presentation of results” in a 2014 paper about a new probe for use in imaging.

We haven’t heard back from the journal nor the authors of the paper, so there’s not much we can officially say about what the journal is investigating.

Here’s the text from the expression of concern:
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Sparks fly in Finland over misconduct investigation

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JEMResearchers in Finland are criticizing an investigation by VTT Technical Research Centre into one of its scientists.

The investigation followed allegations about the VTT’s plasma and serum metabolomics (QBIX) group, previously led by Matej Orešič (who is now based at the Steno Diabetes Center in Gentofte, Denmark) and Tuulia Hyötyläinen. Kai Simons, who conducted an earlier investigation of the group, and the Chancellor Emeritus at the University of Helsinki, have criticized VTT, saying it cut corners in its investigation.

VTT found no evidence of data tampering or falsification in a 2008 paper co-authored by Orešič in the Journal of Experimental Medicine, but said the paper — which has not been corrected or retracted — included some “exaggerated conclusions.” In turn, Orešič and Hyötyläinen filed a complaint for “an alleged violation of good scientific practice” by Simons during the initial investigation. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Dalmeet Singh Chawla

February 9th, 2016 at 2:45 pm

Labor pains study brought into this world twice

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YJPAI_v16_i6_COVER.inddA group of authors published two articles about one study on pain during childbirth, so one journal is retracting it.

This may seem like a standard case of salami slicing — but this one comes with a nearly 600-word commentary co-authored by the editors of the two journals in question.

The commentary lays out — in a refreshingly transparent way — exactly why the journals came to a joint decision to retract one of the papers:

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Another case of plagiarism in papers published only months apart

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pageHeaderTitleImageRemember when we recently found PLOS ONE had published two papers with “substantial overlap” from two different groups, that were edited around the same time? Well, we have discovered another similarly perplexing case of plagiarism in two studies published only months apart. But in this instance, we have a possible explanation for how two groups of authors from different institutions could report a similar experiment and data, and even use some of the same text.

It also concerns a paper focusing on cancer biology — in this case, it’s a 2014 paper retracted by Clinical and Investigative Medicine after editors learned that it contained many similarities to a study published only a handful of months before in Tumour Biology.

According to an email from an author on the retracted paper to the editor, Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ross Keith

February 2nd, 2016 at 2:00 pm

Wikipedia page reincarnated as paper: Authors plagiarized paper on reincarnation

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When an entry on Wikipedia dies, can it come back as a paper in a peer-reviewed journal?

Apparently not, according to the Indian Journal of Psychiatry, which has retracted a 2013 article about reincarnation after discovering the authors lifted text from a “old revision” of a Wikipedia entry on the subject.

The article, “The mystery of reincarnation,” states that:

One of the mysteries puzzling human mind since the origin of mankind is the concept of “reincarnation” which literally means “to take on the flesh again.”

The article presents how different religions describe reincarnation, and apparently provides “some research evidence” about the phenomenon. But according to the retraction notice, the authors, led by AK Nagaraj of Mysore Medical College, took on the words again of other writers:

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You’ve been dupe’d: Data so nice, you see them twice

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j repro infertLast Friday we resurrected a previous feature of Retraction Watch, compiling five retractions that appeared to be simple acts of duplication.

This week, we spotlight another five unrelated retractions which, as we said last week, cover duplications in which the same – or some of the same – authors published the same – or some of the same – information in two different papers.

Most duplications are straightforward — all authors simply send the same or similar study to two or more journals, a violation of most journals’ terms of use.  For instance: Read the rest of this entry »

What to do when you make a mistake? Advice from authors who’ve been there

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cpp-150After a group of researchers noticed an error that affected the analysis of a survey of psychologists working with medical teams to help pediatric patients, they didn’t just issue a retraction — they published a commentary explaining what exactly went wrong.

The error was discovered by a research assistant who was assembling a scientific poster, and noticed the data didn’t align with what was reported in the journal. The error, the authors note, was:

an honest one, a mistake of not reverse coding a portion of the data that none of the authors caught over several months of editing and conference calls. Unfortunately, this error led to misrepresentation and misinterpretation of a subset of the data, impacting the results and discussion.

Needless to say, these authors — who use their “lessons learned” to help other researchers avoid similar missteps — earn a spot in our “doing the right thing” category. The retraction and commentary both appear in Clinical Practice in Pediatric Psychology.

Their first piece of advice in “Retraction experience, lessons learned, and recommendations for clinician researchers” — assume errors will happen, and not vice versa: Read the rest of this entry »

Following an earlier investigation, GW biologist earns two expressions of concern

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3.cover (1)The Journal of Biological Chemistry has flagged two papers by a George Washington University cancer biologist with expressions of concern, following an investigation completed by the university in 2014.

The notes contain little specific information; all we know is that there are questions about the data and conclusions in the papers.

The last author on both papers is Rakesh Kumar, who adds these EoCs to a count that includes, according to our records, three retractions and five corrections. Plus an $8 million lawsuit against his employer for emotional distress when they put him on leave from his position as department chair.

The studies — “Stimulation of inducible nitric oxide by hepatitis B virus transactivator protein HBx requires MTA1 coregulator” and “Regulation of NF-B circuitry by a component of the nucleosome remodeling and deacetylase complex controls inflammatory response homeostasis” — have been cited 22 times and 33 times respectively, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.

The expression of concern is the same for both papers — and matches others that we’ve seen from JBC:

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So, pot may not be as harmless as a recent study suggested

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Researchers are correcting a widely covered study that suggested chronic use of pot might not put users at risk of problems later in life.

It turns out that initial, unexpected finding — covered by Newsweek, The Washington Post, Quartzand (of course) The Stoner’s Cookbook — wasn’t quite right, and a reanalysis found users had a small uptick in risk for psychosis. The authors have issued a lengthy correction in Psychology of Addictive Behaviors that includes some supplemental analysis, too.

Not surprisingly, the study’s findings engendered some controversy, which prompted the authors to reanalyze their data, collected from 408 males with varying levels of marijuana use, who were followed from their teens into their 30s.

Now, an American Psychological Association press release that accompanied the initial findings in August contains an editors note explaining why those aren’t quite correct:

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Paper on pine tree genetics chopped for duplication

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naslovna_vol6_no2A paper on genetic variability in Austrian pine trees apparently didn’t vary enough from other work.

The journal is now retracting the 2012 paper for having significant overlap with another paper published in 2008. Another researcher pointed out the duplication — which was unintentional, according to the note, the result of

an apparent failure in communication between the co-authors on both papers which caused the papers to be overlapped.

The overlapping papers share a first author, Aleksandar Lucic, who works at the Institute of Forestry in Serbia. The other author on both papers is Vasilije Isajev, at the Faculty of Forestry in Belgrade.

Analysis of Genetic Variability of Austrian Pine (Pinus nigra Arnold) in Serbia Using Protein Markers” was published in South-East European Forestry. The journal is not indexed on Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.

Here’s the retraction note:

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