UT-Southwestern cancer researchers up to 8 retractions

oncogeneA group at the University of Texas Southwestern led by Adi F. Gazdar that found evidence of inappropriate image manipulation in a number of their papers has retracted its seventh and eighth studies.

Here’s the notice for 2005’s “Aberrant methylation profile of human malignant mesotheliomas and its relationship to SV40 infection,” in Oncogene:

This paper is retracted due to image duplication involving scientific misconduct. The Internal Review Committee at UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas has found evidence that Figure 2a (p16U) in the published manuscript was duplicated and manipulated in Figure 1 in the paper by M Suzuki, H Shigematsu, N Shivapurkar, J Reddy, K Miyajima, T Takahashi, AF Gazdar, and EP Frenkel, Methylation of apoptosis related genes in the pathogenesis and prognosis of prostate cancer. Cancer Lett 2006; 242(2): 222–230. All authors of this paper agree to this retraction except for AL Zern, who could not be reached to comment on the retraction.

The paper has been cited 55 times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.

The 2006 Cancer Letters paper mentioned in the notice, which has been cited 36 times, has also been retracted:

This article has been retracted: please see Elsevier Policy on Article Withdrawal (http://www.elsevier.com/locate/withdrawalpolicy).

This article has been retracted at the request of the first Author, who accepts responsibility. Following an internal review at the UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, evidence has been found of improper manipulation and duplication of Figure 1 in this article.

We’ve been reporting on this story since late 2012. Here’s what Gazdar told us about the case then. The other retractions were in Anticancer Research, the British Journal of Cancer, Clinical Cancer Research, and the International Journal of Cancer. The group has also had an Expression of Concern in Cancer Biology & Therapy.

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5 thoughts on “UT-Southwestern cancer researchers up to 8 retractions”

  1. Very, very, fascinating in light of Morty’s recent comment here


    Everything is “bigger in Texas” except, apparently, that the cover-ups are only sometimes but not always bigger. The number of retractions counted above will be painful to the PI and the institute. But they have gone ahead with this process and show that they have a respect for the scientific process and a disrespect for making it up as you go along science.

    Thank you!


      1. Those are two cases from Texas. I don’t think that being Texan or conducting research in Texas has anything to do with research reports.

  2. From the abstract of the first retraction: “Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is associated with asbestos exposure and the presence of SV40 viral sequences.” Has something changed since this failed to survive scrutiny back in 2001? A 2010 recap of the XMRV story doesn’t suggest otherwise.

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