Cancer cell line mixup leads to retraction

At team of researchers at MD Anderson Cancer Center has retracted a paper after realizing that the cell lines they were using weren’t what they thought they were. Here’s the detailed notice:

Cell line mixup causes retraction of paper on blood vessel damage

We’ve written before about retractions for cell lines that turn out not to be what researchers thought they were. In a few cases, that has involved contamination by HeLa cells, named for Henrietta Lacks. Today, we note the retraction of a paper whose authors, from Taiwan, thought they were using human muscle cells that line … Continue reading Cell line mixup causes retraction of paper on blood vessel damage

Researcher logs three retractions for image duplications — two of which with familiar co-authors

A researcher in Brazil is taking responsibility for accidentally mixing up images in three papers in the Journal of Biological Chemistry.  The corresponding author on the three papers told us the mistake happened because the studies were conducted simultaneously, and relied on one computer. There’s a side note to these retractions: The co-author list on … Continue reading Researcher logs three retractions for image duplications — two of which with familiar co-authors

Widely used brain tumor cell line may not be what researchers thought it was

Nearly 50 years ago, researchers in Uppsala, Sweden used cells from a patient to establish a brain tumor cell line that has become widely used. But a new study suggests that the most common source of that cell line used by scientists today may not be derived from that original patient’s tumor, raising questions about … Continue reading Widely used brain tumor cell line may not be what researchers thought it was

Misidentified cell line fells cancer paper

Researchers have retracted a paper about a new molecular target for cancer after realizing they had mistaken the identity of their cell line. It’s all too easy to mix up cell lines, so we see plenty of retractions for that reason — and, according to an expert in the area, many more cases lurk uncorrected in … Continue reading Misidentified cell line fells cancer paper

Top journals give mixed response to learning published trials didn’t proceed as planned

Ben Goldacre has been a busy man. In the last six weeks, the author and medical doctor’s Compare Project has evaluated 67 clinical trials published in the top five medical journals, looking for any “switched outcomes,” meaning the authors didn’t report something they said they would, or included additional outcomes in the published paper, with … Continue reading Top journals give mixed response to learning published trials didn’t proceed as planned

SfN journal retracts paper, bans UPenn researchers over “data misrepresentation”

The Journal of Neuroscience has yanked an Alzheimer’s paper and banned three University of Pennsylvania authors from publishing there temporarily, following conflicting investigations by the university and the publisher, the Society for Neuroscience, into the data. The 2011 paper looked into the cellular makeup of the characteristic plaques that develop in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease. … Continue reading SfN journal retracts paper, bans UPenn researchers over “data misrepresentation”

Cell line switch sinks PLoS ONE cancer paper

We’ve written before about how common cell line mix ups are in cancer research; according to a 2012 Wall Street Journal article (paywalled), between a fifth and a third of cancer cell lines tested by suspicious researchers turned out to be misidentified. Obviously, mistakenly studying the wrong kind of cancer is a waste of precious resources, … Continue reading Cell line switch sinks PLoS ONE cancer paper

“Truly extraordinary,” “simply not credible,” “suspiciously sharp:” A STAP stem cell peer review report revealed

Retraction Watch readers are of course familiar with the STAP stem cell saga, which was punctuated by tragedy last month when one of the authors of the two now-retracted papers in Nature committed suicide. In June, Science‘s news section reported: Sources in the scientific community confirm that early versions of the STAP work were rejected … Continue reading “Truly extraordinary,” “simply not credible,” “suspiciously sharp:” A STAP stem cell peer review report revealed

Contaminated cells force retraction of Blood paper

Blood has an interesting retraction of a 2011 paper on what a group of authors claimed was a new cell line — but which proved, apparently, to be a chimera. The article, “Oxygen-regulated expression of the erythropoietin gene in the human renal cell line REPC,” came from a team at Universität Duisburg-Essen, in Germany, and … Continue reading Contaminated cells force retraction of Blood paper