A study that found high levels of the carcinogen formaldehyde leaking from an exhibition by a prominent British artist may have unreliable data, according to its corresponding author.
The 2016 study about Damien Hirst’s exhibition at the Tate gallery in London in 2012 — which involved keeping dead animals in formaldehyde in glass cases — sparked concern in the mainstreammedia over the exhibition’s potential hazards to visitors.
But now the corresponding author of the paper — Pier Giorgio Righetti of the Polytechnic University of Milan in Italy — has alerted the journal, Analytical Methods, of the paper’s shortcomings. The journal has issued an expression of concern (EOC), and is investigating.
The Journal of Materials Chemistry B has issued a laundry list of corrections for a 2014 chemotherapy paper, which address re-use of “some text”, incorrectly stated doses, and miscalculations of the drug concentration, among other issues.
The paper described a new way to deliver gemcitabine via nanoparticles, focusing the drug on the tumors.
It turns out the authors’ focus wasn’t so clear when writing the paper. The researchers, at the Chinese Academy of Medical Science, Peking Union Medical College, and Tianjin University in China, said they used “some text” from two 2013 papers by a team of French oncologists “without appropriate attribution,” as well as repeatedly getting the in vivo dose wrong. The manuscript also contained several incorrect calculations of the “drug loading,” or the proportion of active drug.
Last month, we reported on a 2012 paper in Interface whose authors had the journal issue an expression of concern about it because of “some of the data and methods.” At the time, The Royal Veterinary College at the University of London was conducting an investigation into the research.
“How many and which ant species are being accidentally moved around the world?,” published in 2013, has been retracted because the authors “used a wrong list of species and omitted to include a reference.”
The authors claim that this affected the magnitude of the issue, but not the overall conclusion.
The paper was written up by the press several times, including by the BBC, though according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge, it hasn’t been cited.