Failure to disclose drug company sponsor among litany of reasons for cancer retraction

tumor biologyThis one’s a real mess.

In June, a paper in Tumor Biology was retracted for at least four reasons, including bad data and hiding a trial sponsor (Merck). Some people who contributed work weren’t cited; at least one author had no idea his name would be on it. And that’s just what they tell us in the notice.

Here’s the notice for “Neutropenia and invasive fungal infection in patients with hematological malignancies treated with chemotherapy: a multicenter, prospective, non-interventional study in China:”

The above article has been retracted at the request of the authors, on the grounds of (1) inaccurate or non-validated data (which preclude the results from being replicated); (2) absence of acknowledgement of many participants, including some who should be listed as authors, and the role of the trial sponsor, Merck & Co., Inc.; and (3) one corresponding author not knowing that he was on the author list at the time of submission.

The paper has yet to be cited since its publication in March, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.

We’ve reached out to the journal editor, both corresponding authors, and Merck, and will update with anything we learn.

Hat tip: Rolf Degen

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