Last August, we reported on an Expression of Concern in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine for a paper on HIV and lung injury. The notice said that the University of Nebraska, home to several of the paper’s authors, had begun an inquiry.
Today, the university issued a statement on the case, clearing the researchers of misconduct:
The University of Nebraska Medical Center conducted an internal investigation of issues raised by the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine and found no evidence of research misconduct. The Department of Health and Human Services Office of Research Integrity (ORI) will review the findings as required by federal research misconduct regulations. We can provide an update when the ORI review is complete.
The university issued the statement in response to an inquiry from the Omaha World-Herald, which was first to report it this morning. It’s actually somewhat unusual, in our experience, to hear anything between the start of an investigation and the ORI’s final determination.
Sheila Wrobel, the university’s chief compliance officer, told Retraction Watch she couldn’t comment on the specific findings, nor what prompted the original inquiry, which the Expression of Concern said was “a result of an examination of the images.”
Hat tip: TheWriteScript