The ancients had a thing for hybrids (think animals, not cars): half goat-half humans, horses with human torsos, winged horses and lions, you get the picture. But a chicken-cow mix wasn’t on that list … until now.
A group of researchers in Brazil has lost a paper in a veterinary journal for trying to reuse data from a poultry study in their paper on herpesvirus infections in cattle.
The article, “Bovine Herpesvirus 5 promotes mitochondrial dysfunction in cultured bovine monocyte-derived macrophages and not affect virus replication,” appeared in February in the journal Veterinary Microbiology.
What Caught Our Attention: We won’t lie — any retractions of papers about fish semen (OK, any kind of semen) will make us stop and look. In this case, the journal retracted three papers submitted by the same researcher over concerns of fake review. In the end, the journal was concerned the papers were okayed by reviewers who weren’t “suitably qualified” to review the papers about the content and quality of semen from different fish species. (In fairness, we imagine the pool of qualified reviewers is relatively small.)
A few months ago, Dirk Werling discovered he had made a horrible mistake: He had inadvertently plagiarized in his recent review.
On January 20, Werling said he came across a 2016 paperwhile working on a grant and realized he had published some of the text in his 2018 review in Research in Veterinary Science. Werling — based at Royal Veterinary College at the University of London — told Retraction Watch:
Recently, an ecology journal received a submission that made them pause. In order to conduct their research, the authors had to kill thousands of fish. The study had been approved by conservation authorities, but it still wasn’t sitting well with the journal.
So it rejected the paper, on ethical grounds.
Biological Conservation explained its decision in a recent paper, noting the killing of thousands of vertebrates (marine and freshwater fish) in a protected area was “unnecessary and inappropriate,” and adds the journal will continue questioning and rejecting papers that “do not meet reasonable standards of practice.”
This is not a universal practice, however — years ago, TheNew England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) published the results of a research project that resulted in 90 people becoming infected with HIV. Again, that study had obtained the necessary ethical approvals — but should the journal act as the final judge?
The study “Evaluation of Co-Digestion at a Commercial Dairy Anaerobic Digester” was published in 2011 in the journal CLEAN: Soil, Air, Water. First author Craig Frear was a Ph.D. student at WSU Pullman when the study was carried out and an assistant professor at the time of the investigation. The editor-in-chief of CLEAN, Prisca Henheik, told us that the retraction is a done deal even though it has not been posted online: Continue reading A bullshit excuse? My lab notebook “was blown into a manure pit”
A journal is pulling a paper that reported a grain sample in Texas tested positive for mad cow disease after the authors asked to change the results to say the sample contained “animal protein prohibited for use in ruminant feed.”
Shortly after the paper was published in October, the authors contacted the Journal of Food Protection to retract the finding that the grain sample tested positive for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). After review, the journal decided to retract the entire paper, with the authors’ agreement, citing changes that “significantly affect” the findings.
A 13th retraction has been published for Jesús Ángel Lemus, the Spanish veterinary researcher whose work colleagues have had trouble verifying.
This paper was pulled for similar reasons as his other retractions: After retrying the experiments in two independent labs, fellow authors were “unable to arrive to any sound conclusion about the validity of his analyses.”
The authors of a paper on parasitic nematodes have retracted the article because they misidentified the organism in question, so “the possibility of misleading readers was high.”
The paper, “Histopathological features of Capillaria hepatica infection in laboratory rabbits,” appeared in Toxicologic Pathology in 2009 and came from a lab at Huntingdon Life Sciences, in Cambridgeshire, England.