The American Heart Association’s journal Circulation has issued an expression of concern for a paper about the molecular underpinnings of arrhythmias that was co-authored by a biomedical engineer who committed fraud on a massive scale.
According to an investigation by the Office of Research Integrity (ORI), former Vanderbilt engineer Igor Dzhura faked nearly 70 images and drastically over-estimated the number of experiments he conducted. He was banned from receiving federal funding for three years.
The fraud has resulted in six retracted papers, Dzhura has agreed to retract six papers, which have been cited more than 500 times. [Ed. note: at this time, only one paper has actually been retracted]
The Circulation paper will not be retracted, because Dzhura only contributed to some panels of one figure, and the authors “have confirmed the veracity of the remaining data.” The journal cautions future readers that “the authors are unable to vouch for the accuracy of the data in Figure 6 panels a, c, and d.”
The paper has been cited 163 times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge.
The ORI tweeted the link:
— Research Integrity (@HHS_ORI) February 24, 2015
Here’s the notice for “Calmodulin kinase II and arrhythmias in a mouse model of cardiac hypertrophy”:
As described in the Federal Register notice, Vol 79, No. 227, dated Tuesday, November 25, 2014 (http://ori.hhs.gov/content/case-summary-dzhura-igor), Dr Igor Dzhura, formerly of Vanderbilt University, engaged in research misconduct by providing falsified and/or fabricated data to his supervisor. Accordingly, the authors are unable to vouch for the accuracy of the data in Figure 6 panels a, c, and d in an article that appeared in the September 3, 2002, issue of the journal:
Wu Y, Temple J, Zhang R, Dzhura I, Zhang W, Trimble R, Roden DM, Passier R, Olson EN, Colbran RJ, Anderson ME. Calmodulin kinase II and arrhythmias in a mouse model of cardiac hypertrophy. Circulation. 2002;106:1288–1293. [PMID: 12208807]
Dr Dzhura’s contributions to this article were limited to Figure 6 panels a, c, and d. The authors have confirmed the veracity of the remaining data in Figures 1 through 5 and Figure 6 panel b. The authors regret any confusion or inconvenience this has caused for the scientific community.
The editors felt it best to post this Expression of Concern to alert our readers to an investigative finding regarding this article that has been issued by the Office of Research Integrity.
We’ve emailed the editor, and will update if we hear back.
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