The Journal of Biological Chemistry has retracted two papers by a Georgia State University researcher, as well as flagged eight more with expressions of concern, a move the scientist called “unfair and unjustified.”
Ming-Hui Zou, the common author on all ten papers — as well as on twomore that have been corrected by the same journal — is, according to Georgia State,
an internationally recognized researcher in molecular and translational medicine and a Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar in Molecular Medicine and associate vice president for research at Georgia State University…
On March 30, 2018, The Ohio State University (OSU) released a 75-page report concluding that Ching-Shih Chen, a cancer researcher, had deviated “from the accepted practices of image handling and figure generation and intentionally falsifying data.” The report recommended the retraction of eight papers.
By the end of August of 2018, Chen had had four papers retracted — one in Cancer Research, two in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, and one in PLoS ONE.
But it wasn’t until more than a year after the report was released that the other four papers — two from Carcinogenesis, one from Clinical Cancer Research, and one from Molecular Cellular Therapeutics — were retracted, all between April 1 and May 1 of this year.
What took so long? Your guess is as good as ours; none of the editors of those journals responded to our requests for comment.
Tomorrow is Joe Thomas’s 35th birthday. And earlier this week, he received quite a birthday present, even if it wasn’t intended that way: Thomas earned a $33.75 million payout from a lawsuit he filed against Duke University six years ago.
Retraction Watch readers may recall the name Erin Potts-Kant. We’ve been reporting on retractions by Potts-Kant, a former lab tech at Duke, since 2013. (The count is now 17.) Along the way, we learned that she had been convicted of embezzlement, but that there was a bigger story: There was a False Claims Act case against Duke, Potts-Kant, and Michael Foster, in whose lab she worked, alleging that the university had known that faked data had been included in grant applications.
Molecular Vision appears to have been flying blind when it retracted a 2013 paper by Rajendra Kadam and colleagues.
In December 2018, Kadam, a former “golden boy” in pharmaceutical research at the University of Colorado, Denver, was the subject of a finding from the U.S. Office of Research Integrity, which stated that he had fabricated his data. As part of the agreement, Kadam agreed to retract a paper in Molecular Vision. .
When Venkata Sudheer Kumar Ramadugu, then a postdoc at the University of Michigan, admitted to the university on June 28 of last year that he had committed research misconduct in a paper that appeared in Chemical Communications in 2017, he also “attested that he did not manipulate any data in his other four co-authored publications published while at the University of Michigan.”
And so, a few days later, Michael J. Imperiale, the university’s research integrity officer, wrote a letter to the U.S. Office of Research Integrity (ORI) informing them of the findings. On August 2, Ramadagu was terminated from Michigan. And on August 3, Ayyalusamy Ramamoorthy, the head of the lab where Ramadagu had worked, wrote a letter to Chemical Communications requesting retraction of the paper.
After years of back and forth, a highly cited paper that appeared to show that gay people who live in areas where people were highly prejudiced against them had a significantly shorter life expectancy has been retracted.
Imagine you’re a journal editor. A group of authors sends you a request to retract one of their papers, saying that “during figure assembly certain images were inappropriately processed.”
What do you do next? Do you ask some tough questions about just what “inappropriately processed” means? Do you check your files for whether the author’s institution had told you about an investigation into the work? Do you Google the author’s names? Do you…search Retraction Watch?