Nature retracts study touted as step toward treatments for bone diseases

A Nature study that could have provided a “potential therapeutic target for osteoporosis and bone metastases of cancer” has been retracted.

Since being published in 2014 by researchers at UT Southwestern, MD Anderson and elsewhere, “miR-34a blocks osteoporosis and bone metastasis by inhibiting osteoclastogenesis and Tgif2” has been cited more than 200 times, according to Clarivate Analytics’ Web of Science.

A year ago — on May 24, 2019 — Nature published a correction to the paper:

In this Letter, the citation to ‘Fig. 4e, f’ should be ‘Fig. 3e, f’ following the text: “Consequently, OVX-induced bone loss was attenuated by miR-34a-CH”. This does not affect the conclusions of the paper, and the original Letter has not been corrected online.

Today, Nature has retracted the article:

Upon re-examination of the bone histomorphometry data in Extended Data Figs. 1i, 2d, 3h, 4h, 5n, 6e, 9g and 10f of this Letter, anomalies were found that call into question the integrity of these data. These concerns undermine the confidence in the study and the authors thus wish to retract the Letter in its entirety. The authors regret this situation and apologize to the scientific community. All authors agree with the Retraction, but author Xunde Wang did not respond.

We contacted corresponding author Yihong Wan for comment, but she has not responded.

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