Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

PubPeer files motion to dismiss Sarkar defamation case

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sarkarAttorneys representing PubPeer in its defense against a subpoena by cancer researcher Fazlul Sarkar, of Wayne State University in Michigan, have submitted a motion to the Wayne County Circuit Court to quash the matter.

Sarkar’s work has appeared on the anonymized post-publication peer review site, and he isn’t happy about it. In October, he sued the site’s commenters, demanding that PubPeer release the names of his accusers. Sarkar, who has not been found to have committed research misconduct, claims he lost a lucrative job offer at the University of Mississippi as a result of the posts.

The motion — available here — argues that even if the claims of image irregularities levied against Sarkar by anonymous PubPeer posters are untrue, they don’t meet conventional standards of defamation: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by amarcus41

December 10th, 2014 at 12:56 pm

Rash decision? Duplicate submission of dermatitis paper leads to publishing ban

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IJDA trio of skin specialists in Egypt has lost a 2009 paper in the Indian Journal of Dermatology for duplication. And the journal wasn’t happy about it.

The article, “Serum mucosa-associated epithelial chemokine in atopic dermatitis : A specific marker for severity,” came from a group at Ain Shams University in Cairo. According to the abstract: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by amarcus41

December 10th, 2014 at 11:30 am

Paper on controversial stem cell “stamina therapy” retracted

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A Korean stem cell journal has retracted a paper on a controversial Italian treatment that involves harvesting stem cells from bone marrow and injecting them back into the patient.

Stamina therapy” has been pitched as a treatment for everything from Parkinson’s disease to coma, based on a U.S. patent application filed in 2010. The Italian government pledged about $3.9 million in 2013 to support a clinical trial for stamina therapy. More than 100 people signed up for the trials, with a wide range of neurological ailments; half were children.

However, allegations of fraud led to a criminal investigation into the Stamina Foundation’s leader, psychologist David Vannoni, as well as 17 other members of the organization. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

December 10th, 2014 at 9:30 am

Faking data earns stem cell researcher a ban on federal funding

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Screen shot 2014-12-09 at 12.01.19 PMThe Office of Research Integrity (ORI) has sanctioned Kaushik Deb, a former post-doc at the University of Missouri-Columbia, who “engaged in misconduct in science by intentionally, knowingly, and recklessly” fabricating data in papers in both Science and Nature (which ultimately rejected his manuscript).

Deb was big news in 2007, when Science retracted his paper. Articles about the case appeared in many outlets, including The Scientist and USA Today. At the time, Missouri’s research integrity officer, Rob Hall, told the Columbia Tribune that: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by amarcus41

December 9th, 2014 at 12:24 pm

Italian researcher facing criminal charges notches seventh retraction

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proteomicsAlfredo Fusco, a researcher in Italy under criminal investigation, now has a seventh retraction for manipulated images.

Here’s the notice for “Retraction: Identification of new high mobility group A1 associated proteins,” to which not all of the authors agreed: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

December 9th, 2014 at 9:30 am

JCI lymphoma paper retracted after authors can’t find underlying data to explain duplicated bands

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Screen Shot 2014-11-25 at 5.12.55 PMA paper in the Journal of Clinical Investigation has been retracted for manipulated images, including duplicated bands in a Western blot.

Take a look at figure one to the right and see if you can spot all the doubles.

Click here for a more zoomable image.

Here’s the notice: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

December 8th, 2014 at 1:15 pm

Plagiarism scandal tarnishes student newspaper at Trinity College, Dublin

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utbanner4Irish eyes definitely are not smiling at Trinity College in Dublin, where the campus paper, The University Times, has acknowledged that one of its editors seems to have been a serial plagiarist.

According to an editorial in the paper published on Friday: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by amarcus41

December 8th, 2014 at 10:30 am

Phantom authorship forces retraction of electron paper

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ULTRAMICUltramicroscopy has retracted a paper it published earlier this year after the corresponding author admitted to submitting the paper without the consent of his colleagues.

The article, “The post-peak spectra in electron energy loss near edge structure,” came from a group led by one Feng Tian, a materials scientist at Shanghai University for Science and Technology. The other authors were Peter Shattschneider and Micheal Stoger-Pollach, of the Vienna University of Technology. Except that they weren’t.

According to the retraction notice: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by amarcus41

December 8th, 2014 at 9:30 am

Weekend reads: Death of a scientist; Science, the Lake Wobegon of experiments

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booksNews elsewhere about scientific integrity, publishing, and related issues abounded this week: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

December 6th, 2014 at 7:54 am

Posted in weekend reads

Is Rolling Stone retracting its story on UVA sexual assault?

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Rolling-Stone-LOGO-2Rolling Stone has published an editor’s note that calls into question their November 19 story, “A Rape on Campus,” which details a UVA student’s alleged gang rape at a fraternity party and her subsequent struggle to get justice from the school.

Shortly after publication, the magazine was criticized for not seeking a statement from the alleged perpetrators, despite the fact that they were not named in the story, and for relying almost entirely on the testimony from one individual.

Here is managing editor Will Dana’s editor’s note: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

December 5th, 2014 at 4:28 pm

Posted in Uncategorized