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Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Ripping off someone else’s thesis sinks paper on chicken temperatures

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ISB_IJBProof that people will plagiarize anything they think they can get away with: a Brazilian scientist plagiarized a masters’ student’s thesis on the surface temperature of chickens.

We spoke with International Journal of Biometeorology editor-in-chief Scott Sheridan about the case: Read the rest of this entry »

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Written by Cat Ferguson

October 14, 2014 at 9:30 am

How meta: Paper on errors retracted for “too many stupid mistakes”

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Measurement-in-Physical-Education-and-Exercise-ScienceA paper published in Measurement in Physical Education and Exercise Science has been retracted for statistical and typographical mistakes.

Here’s the notice for “Comparing Measurement Error Between Two Different Methods of Measurement of Various Magnitudes”: Read the rest of this entry »

Asthma study yanked for serious ethical violations

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springerplusA paper in SpringerPlus on treating asthma with antioxidants was retracted on September 25 for something of a trifecta of ethical problems.

The retraction notice indicates that the patients never consented, there was no ethical review, and the university supposedly overseeing the study had no knowledge of it:

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

October 13, 2014 at 9:30 am

European Science Foundation demands retraction of criticism in Nature, threatens legal action

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Amaya Moro-Martin

Amaya Moro-Martin

The European Science Foundation (ESF) has threatened legal action against a scientist for calling an evaluation process supported by the agency “flawed” in a commentary piece in Nature.

Amayo Moro-Martin, an assistant astronomer at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) and an associate research scientist at The Johns Hopkins University, apparently angered the ESF with the bolded phrase below: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

October 12, 2014 at 10:58 am

Posted in nature

Weekend reads: Senator loses degree for plagiarism; bad colitis poetry; fraud on the big screen

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booksThe week at Retraction Watch featured papers by a fake author with a brilliant if profane name, and the unmasking of fraudster Diederik Stapel as a sock puppet. Here’s what was happening elsewhere: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

October 11, 2014 at 9:34 am

Posted in weekend reads

After 16 retractions, management professor Lichtenthaler resigns post

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Ulrich Lichtenthaler

Ulrich Lichtenthaler

Ulrich Lichtenthaler, a management professor at the University of Mannheim who has had to retract 16 papers for data irregularities, has resigned his faculty position.

According to a terse release from the university (translated from German): Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

October 10, 2014 at 3:05 pm

Cell line switch sinks PLoS ONE cancer paper

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plosWe’ve written before about how common cell line mix ups are in cancer research; according to a 2012 Wall Street Journal article (paywalled), between a fifth and a third of cancer cell lines tested by suspicious researchers turned out to be misidentified.

Obviously, mistakenly studying the wrong kind of cancer is a waste of precious resources, both time and money. And it’s clear the problem hasn’t gone away. PLoS ONE just retracted a cancer paper originally published in December 2012 for studying two cell lines that had been contaminated by other cell types.

Here’s the notice for “Epithelial Mesenchymal Transition Is Required for Acquisition of Anoikis Resistance and Metastatic Potential in Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma”:
Read the rest of this entry »

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