For a host of reasons, a journal has retracted a paper co-authored by a researcher who reportedly once faced charges of practicing medicine without proper qualifications.
According to the retraction notice for “Psorinum Therapy in Treating Stomach, Gall Bladder, Pancreatic, and Liver Cancers: A Prospective Clinical Study,” published Dec. 8, 2010 in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, the paper was plagued by:
Continue reading Ethics, authorship concerns sink homeopathy paper by researchers arrested last year
Title: Adherence to Adjuvant Neuropathic Pain Medications in a Palliative Care Clinic
What Caught Our Attention: We’ve found a fourth retraction for the unlicensed use of a common research tool, an issue we explored in depth for Science last year. Quick recap: When researchers use a copyrighted questionnaire (MMAS-8) without permission, they get a call from its creator Donald Morisky (or his representative), asking them to pay up — sometimes thousands of dollars. There’s another option: Retract the paper. That was the choice made by a group of researchers in Arkansas, who — in a nicely detailed notice — note that, since the scale was developed using federal funds, “they dispute the validity and reasonableness of Dr. Morisky’s demands in light of the National Institutes of Health’s Principles and Guidelines for Recipients of NIH Research Grants and Contracts on Obtaining and Disseminating Biomedical Research Resources.” Continue reading Caught Our Notice: Should publicly funded research tools be free for researchers to use?
A journal has retracted a warning posted to a paper involved in an authorship dispute, after the issue was resolved in a court case.
In an editorial published Jan. 10, editors at the journal Molecules wrote that they were removing the expression of concern for “Helleborus purpurascens—Amino Acid and Peptide Analysis Linked to the Chemical and Antiproliferative Properties of the Extracted Compounds.”
The editors flagged the 2015 paper in June, 2016 after a researcher in Germany also claimed authorship. In the 2016 notice, the editors wrote:
Continue reading Journal retracts note of concern after court settles authorship dispute
A court is reportedly telling a journal to unmask a retracted paper’s peer reviewers, part of a defamation lawsuit involving the journal’s publisher and the CrossFit exercise brand.
According to an attorney representing CrossFit, yesterday Judge Joel Wohlfeil of the San Diego Superior Court decided that the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) must turn over to CrossFit the names of peer reviewers of “Crossfit-based high-intensity power training improves maximal aerobic fitness and body composition,” by Jan. 26. The names will be revealed under a protective order, the lawyer said, meaning CrossFit and the other defendants will see them but cannot disclose them to others.
Continue reading Judge orders journal to identify peer reviewers: CrossFit lawyer
Another front has opened up in the legal battle between the CrossFit exercise brand and a competitor, spurred by a now-retracted paper about the risk of injury from the workout program. Soon, a judge will decide whether CrossFit is entitled to learn the names of the study’s peer reviewers.
CrossFit has tried and failed to identify them before. If they’re successful now, it could help establish a new way to legally breach reviewer confidentiality; two outside lawyers we consulted said they’d never before seen a court order a journal to reveal an article’s peer reviewers.
On Jan. 18, Judge Joel Wohlfeil of the Superior Court of the State of California in San Diego is scheduled to hold a hearing on whether or not the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) should be compelled to unmask the reviewers for “Crossfit-based high-intensity power training improves maximal aerobic fitness and body composition.”
The article was published in 2013 in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research (JSCR), the official research publication of the NSCA, and was retracted last year. It’s referred to as the “Devor article” in the court documents, after last author Steven Devor, a former professor at The Ohio State University (OSU).
A “discovery referee” assigned to the defamation case recently ordered NSCA to provide CrossFit with the reviewers’ names, but NSCA is challenging those rulings, saying that they have the same right to protect their sources as journalists do.
Continue reading CrossFit asks court to unmask peer reviewers of retracted study
Last month, Nature Ecology & Evolution published a series of responses to a previous article recommending essential reading for all ecologists. In one response, the authors argue that the list is highly biased in favor of white male authors, and raises the problem of bullying and harassment in academia. But the letter is missing one key reference from its original submission: To a recent news story in Science reporting “disturbing” sexual harassment allegations against a prominent field researcher.
Why is the reference missing?
Because the editor at Nature Ecology & Evolution asked the authors to take it out, citing concerns about libel.
Here’s the note the authors received on their original submission:
Continue reading Ever been asked to remove a reference for libel concerns? These authors have
The author of a 2009 commentary exploring “sexually specific infanticide” in bears has won a judgment against Elsevier for using “untruthful and unverified” language in a 2011 retraction notice.
The last author, Miguel Delibes, who filed the suit in 2014, explained that the judge ruled he should accept the journal’s decision to retract his paper, but “confirmed that my honorability had been damaged” by the false accusation in the original retraction notice. According to a new note on the paper from the publisher, the court required the journal to publish part of its ruling to correct the record. Continue reading Author wins judgment against Elsevier in lawsuit over retraction
A journal has withdrawn an essay that called for a return to colonialism after the editor received alleged threats tied to the article.
Soon after Third World Quarterly published the controversial essay, readers began to object. When the journal defended its decision, 15 editorial board members resigned in response. More than 10,000 people signed a petition to have it retracted. On September 26, the publisher posted a statement — including a detailed timeline of the paper’s peer review process — and said the the author had requested to withdraw the article. However, in the statement, the publisher said that “peer-reviewed research articles cannot simply be withdrawn but must have grounds for retraction.”
The journal has since changed its position, and withdrawn the paper entirely from its site, posting this notice in its place:
Continue reading “Credible threats of personal violence” against editor prompt withdrawal of colonialism paper
A subject in a documentary film about the psychology of religious ideation has pushed the BMJ to take down its review of the film, based on a complaint citing a European internet privacy rule.
On July 3, BMJ posted a retraction notice for an article that barely said anything:
This article has been retracted by the journal following a complaint.
The 2002 article is a review of a documentary film entitled “Those Who Are Jesus,” directed by Steven Eastwood, a British filmmaker. The review has been removed from the BMJ site, as well as PubMed.
BMJ told Retraction Watch that it took down the film review in response to a European citizen exercising his or her “right to be forgotten,” an internet privacy idea that, according to the European Union, ensures:
Continue reading “Right to be forgotten” takes down BMJ’s 15-year-old film review
Hearsay is not admissible as evidence in court — and it doesn’t seem to go very far in science, either.
A pair of researchers in the field of human evolution have lost a paper which contained data from “personal correspondence” that the providing party apparently did not enjoy seeing in print.
The article, “Early hominin biogeography in Island Southeast Asia,” was published in the September/October 2015 issue of Evolutionary Anthropology. The authors, Roy Larick and Russell Ciochon, are paleoanthropologists and co-founders of the Iowa-Bandung Java Project — a 20-year old collaborative effort to study the origins of early humans in Indonesia. Continue reading Inclusion of “personal correspondence” in evolution paper prompts retraction, new journal policy