What Caught Our Attention: One would think that the corresponding author would have to be aware that they are submitting an article for publication — but apparently not, as this retraction demonstrates. The 2016 paper listed two corresponding authors — along with both of their emails and mailing addresses — but according to the retraction notice, one of them did not give consent “in any form” to the publication. Often, we see authors unaware of the use of their name when their email has been faked, but here, it’s possible the journal simply relied on the other corresponding author for all correspondence. Continue reading Caught Our Notice: How can a publication be a surprise to a corresponding author?
After Tina Wenz was found guilty of scientific misconduct, how long did it take for journals to retract the problematic papers? The answer: Between three and nine months.
In September 2016, the University of Cologne found that Wenz had committed scientific misconduct in six papers and requested they all be retracted. From that point on, the retraction clock was ticking.
We’ve explored how long it takes a journal to act over the years, and we’ve found that the time between identifying a problem to retracting the paper can vary — and sometimes last years.
In Wenz’s case, one of the papers—published in Cell Metabolism in 2009—had already been retracted in 2015. Three of the remaining five were retracted in December 2016—a 2008 paper in Cell Metabolism, a 2009 paper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), and a 2009 paper in the Journal of Applied Physiology.
In January 2017, the journal IUBMB Life pulled a 2014 paper flagged in the investigation. And just over nine months after Wenz was found guilty of misconduct, the last paper—published in 2013 in Mitochondrion—has been retracted.
The most recent notice states that the University of Cologne requested the retractions, after determining that the data had been “inappropriately manipulated.”
Here’s the retraction notice in Mitochondrion:
The University of Cologne has conducted an investigation into the research of Tina Wenz, and determined that six papers should be pulled due to scientific misconduct.
One of the six papers was already retracted last year by Cell Metabolism, which cited reused northern and western blot band images in two figures.
The other six papers are: Continue reading German university recommends that six papers be retracted following probe