A retraction with “serious consequences to wheat production”

pmbrChinese researchers have had a 2012 paper in Plant Molecular Biology Reporter on genetically modified wheat retracted, in a notice that cites fraud.

The article, “Isolation and Functional Characterization of an Antifreeze Protein Gene, TaAFPIII, from Wheat (Triticum aestivum),” came from the same group we wrote about in April 2012 when they retracted a paper from Acta Biochimica et Biophysica Sinica, also about genetically altered wheat.

At the time, the authors said they were pulling the other paper because they were having trouble replicating their findings. That now seems accurate, but not entirely complete.

As the new retraction notice states:

This article has been retracted due to fraudulent content with serious consequences to wheat production and its economic impact.

We haven’t been able to reach anyone involved in the case to know whether this retraction and the misconduct that precipitated it are indeed dire for wheat production. We note that the leader of the group, Guangyuan He, directs a joint lab between China and the United Kingdom.

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