What Caught Our Attention: Quite frankly, anything with “gorilla gorilla gorilla” in the title will catch our eye, even if it is just the scientific name of the western lowland gorilla. In this case, the journal issued an expression of concern over an “unintended discrepancy” that may have affected the paper, which validates the use of a tool to measure oxytocin in the apes’ urine and saliva. The authors voluntarily notified the editors of Primate of the potential issue, and the journal issued an Expression of Concern only one month after the article was published — which is pretty fast for a notice, although not a record (see this one, issued six days after publication).
We contacted the editor, who told us:
As stated in the Expression of Concern, the authors voluntarily contacted the journal, having discovered an unintended discrepancy between their described extraction method and what was actually done. This raises questions regarding hormonal values included in the article. We are corresponding with the authors with a view to resolving the issue in the best way for all parties concerned. Further details will be made available in due course.
Arbor Assays lists this study on its Oxytocin EIA Kit website – the “commercial enzyme immunoassay” used in the study.
Authors: Austin Leeds, Patricia M. Dennis, Kristen E. Lukas, Tara S. Stoinski, Mark A. Willis, Mandi W. Schook
Affiliations: Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, Ohio, USA; Case Western Reserve University, USA; The Ohio State University, USA; Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International, USA; Disney’s Animals, Science and Environment, USA
This Expression of Concern relates to the article entitled “Biologically validating the measurement of oxytocin in western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) urine and saliva using a commercial enzyme immunoassay”, by Austin Leeds, Patricia M. Dennis, Kristen E. Lukas, Tara S. Stoinski, Mark A. Willis, and Mandi W. Shook. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10329-018-0651-1
The authors have drawn the Editors’ attention to an unintended discrepancy between the described hormone extraction process and the actual processing of their urine and saliva samples, with implications for the data reported in the article.
The implications of this issue are currently being carefully considered, and further information will be provided once the Editor-in-Chief has reached a final decision.
Date of Article: February 2018
Times Cited, according to Clarivate Analytics’ Web of Science: Article not indexed
Date of Notice: March 3, 2018
Like Retraction Watch? You can make a tax-deductible contribution to support our growth, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, add us to your RSS reader, sign up for an email every time there’s a new post (look for the “follow” button at the lower right part of your screen), or subscribe to our daily digest. If you find a retraction that’s not in our database, you can let us know here. For comments or feedback, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.