October 31, 2014

12:00 PM | Former NIH lab director faked findings in three papers: ORI
The former director  of the X-ray crystallography lab at the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health, faked findings in three papers, according to the Office of Research Integrity. Two of the three papers by Bijan Ahvazi were published in 2004, and later retracted in 2007, […]

October 30, 2014

6:25 PM | What was behind an oddly-worded dental retraction? The authors stole someone’s thesis
A dentistry journal has retracted a paper after discovering the research was lifted from dissertation work by two people unrelated to the paper authors. Here’s the notice for “Treatment of mandibular angle fracture with a 2 mm, 3-dimensional rectangular grid compression miniplates: A prospective clinical study“: It has been brought to the notice of Editorial […]
3:30 PM | Will journal finally retract fraudulent paper 10 months after an official request?
Elsevier journal Chemosphere may finally retract a paper it learned contained fabricated data in January when a member of the author’s institution requested the paper be retracted. The paper has been cited at least once since the lies came to light, as we reported earlier this month. The journal contacted the relevant parties on October 29 with the […]
1:30 PM | PubPeer Selections: On an “immodest title;” authors recalculate findings in response to questions
Here’s another installment of PubPeer Selections: “In my opinion, the immodest title of this paper is not supported by its contents,” writes Hilda Bastain at PubMed Commons of “Enhancing dentate gyrus function with dietary flavanols improves cognition in older adults.” A PubPeer commenter links to that and another comment on the paper. “Because of the […]

October 29, 2014

3:30 PM | Structure error sinks NIH-MIT-SNU peptide paper
A mistake in structure identification has sunk a paper by researchers at the NIH, MIT, and Seoul National University in the Cell Press journal Chemistry and Biology. Here’s the notice for “Peptide-Based Inhibitors of Plk1 Polo-box Domain Containing Mono-anionic Phosphothreonine Esters and Their Pivaloyloxymethyl Prodrugs”: This article has been retracted at the request of the authors. […]
1:30 PM | Not just lack of IRB approval: Boldt’s data were fake in 2009 study, too
We’ve commented before on the fact that we’ve noticed there’s often more to retractions whose stated reason is lack of institutional review board (IRB) approval. We can understand editors’ inclination to act as quickly as possible to issue a retraction, the scientific publishing equivalent of jailing Al Capone for tax evasion. But we appreciate it […]

October 28, 2014

3:30 PM | Authors retract two spectroscopy papers when follow-up results don’t match
The authors of two spectroscopy papers in Royal Society of Chemistry journals have retracted them. Here’s the notice for “Determination of silk fibroin secondary structure by terahertz time domain spectroscopy” (free, but requires sign-in) in Analytical Methods, which is almost identical to this notice in Analyst: We, the authors Chao Yan, Bin Yang and Zhicheng Yu, […]
1:30 PM | Student denied credit, math article retracted
A math paper in the Journal of Inequalities and Applications has been retracted after it was discovered the authors had included a student’s work without acknowledging her. One of the authors, however, told us it was an honest mistake, and that the editor pushed for retraction instead of correction “to protect this journal and its impact factor.” […]

October 27, 2014

3:30 PM | Quantum physics paper pulled for “serious theoretical errors,” notice accidentally paywalled
A paper on photonic quantum walks has been retracted over a theoretical disagreement. The notice is also paywalled, which the editorial director has assured us is a mistake that is being corrected. We sent the COPE guidelines on retraction to the American Physical Society, which publishes Physical Review Letters. Editorial director Dan Kulp told us the … … Continue reading →
1:30 PM | “Our real intention was to emphasize, not plagiarize”
This one’s not a retraction, but rather a back and forth of letters to the editor concerning accusations of plagiarism. Dentists Bryan and Paul Jacobs, a father and son team, wrote a paper describing a novel surgical technique in March 2013. In October 2013, several Croatian dentists published their own paper using the technique. A […]

October 26, 2014

12:43 PM | Scientist sues PubPeer commenters, subpoenas site for names
Last month, we reported that a Wayne State University cancer researcher had threatened legal action involving post-publication peer review site PubPeer, claiming that he had lost a job offer from the University of Mississippi because of comments on the site. Fazlul Sarkar — who has received $12.8 million in NIH funding and has been an investigator […]

October 25, 2014

1:30 PM | Weekend reads: Making research true; peer review in Shakespeare; a 79-year-old postdoc
The week at Retraction Watch began with the retraction of a paper touted by Dr. Oz. Here’s what was happening elsewhere: “How to Make More Published Research True:” John Ioannidis strikes again. Did you know that Shakespeare wrote about peer review? A leading vision researcher has decided to finally do a post-doc — at the […]

October 24, 2014

3:30 PM | Heart paper will go on, but only in the first of two journals it was published in
A cardiovascular group has retracted a conference proceeding abstract, because it too closely resembled a paper they published prior to the conference. The last author is baffled as to why the journal couldn’t have made that call before they published the abstract. Here’s the notice for “Increased beta-adrenergic inotropy in ventricular myocardium from Trpm4 knockout […]
1:30 PM | Failure to disclose drug company sponsor among litany of reasons for cancer retraction
This one’s a real mess. In June, a paper in Tumor Biology was retracted for at least four reasons, including bad data and hiding a trial sponsor (Merck). Some people who contributed work weren’t cited; at least one author had no idea his name would be on it. And that’s just what they tell us in the notice. Here’s the […]

October 23, 2014

2:30 PM | Authors retract PNAS paper questioned on PubPeer after original films can’t be found
PubPeer leads the way again: The authors of a paper about Parkinson’s disease in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) have retracted it, several months after a commenter highlighted the exact issue that led to the article’s demise. The paper, originally published in September 2013, was called into question by a commenter on […]
12:24 PM | Dr. Oz: Following green coffee bean diet retraction, site scrubbed, “further study is needed”
On Monday, we were first to report that a study of green coffee bean extract for weight loss touted on the Dr. Oz Show had been retracted. That story has been widely picked up by the media, including The Washington Post, which yesterday reported that the show had posted a statement about the development: In […]

October 22, 2014

3:30 PM | Doing the right thing: Authors retract PNAS paper when new experiments show “conclusion was incorrect”
Researchers in Sweden and Australia have retracted a paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) after follow-up experiments disproved their conclusions. Here’s the notice for “Dominant suppression of inflammation by glycan-hydrolyzed IgG,” which is signed by all nine of the paper’s authors: The authors wish to note the following: “Using studies […]
1:30 PM | “Editors are pleased to receive death threats on the third Thursday of the month:” A new journal launches
There’s a new journal in town. Inference’s first issue includes a lengthy review of a laboratory by a tennis instructor, a set of caricatures, and an exchange of emails from 1996 that is “perhaps, less remarkable for what it says than for the fact that it took place at all.” In short, its editors — […]
10:29 AM | Martin Gardner
Come ha ricordato Maurizio Codogno è stato il centenario di Martin Gardner. Recupero oggi con la traduzione di un articolo di David Singmaster uscito su "Nature" nel 2010 come ricordo per la figura di riferimento che ha rappresentato per moltissimi lettori, amanti della matematica e matematici professionisti.Dalla metà degli anni '50 fino ai primi anni '80 del XX sexolo, probabilmente la più nota sezione di Scientific American è stata Mathematical games di Martin Gardner. Come […]

October 21, 2014

3:30 PM | PubPeer Selections: More stem cell questions; “is the hassle of a correction really needed?”
Here’s another installment of PubPeer Selections: The authors of an ACS Nano paper that earned an In the Pipeline headline of “Electromagnetic Production of Stem Cells? Really?” respond to criticism. “If it’s an innocent mistake that truly does not impact any of the findings of the study, is the hassle of a correction really needed?” […]
1:30 PM | Article using tin foil, cling wrap to debunk ocean warming retracted after urgent peer review
A conference proceedings paper that attempted to debunk ocean warming due to climate change using tin foil and cling wrap has been retracted by the Wessex Institute of Technology (WIT) Press. The paper, “A Comparison Of The Efficacy Of Greenhouse Gas Forcing And Solar Forcing,” was published as part of the proceedings of a July 2014 […]
11:36 AM | Inflazione infinita e fine del tempo
Come saprete i dati di BICEP che sembrava dovessero confermare l'inflazione cosmica e le onde gravitazionali primordiali hanno subito una verifica negativa. Come spiegano molto bene Amedeo e Sandro, l'interpretazione dei risultati è stata completamente ribaltata dalle analisi di Planck.Uno degli aspetti che, con quell'annuncio di metà aprile, non avevo trattato ma che mi sarebbe piaciuto era la questione dell'inflazione infinita. Questa ipotesi teorica venne introdotta da Alan Guth e altri […]

October 20, 2014

3:30 PM | Authors retract green coffee bean diet paper touted by Dr. Oz
Two authors of a 2012 paper sponsored by a company that made grand claims about green coffee bean abstract’s abilities to help people lose weight have retracted it. The study was cited by The Dr. Oz Show, and last month it cost the company a $3.5 million settlement with the Feds. Here’s the notice for […]
1:30 PM | Journal of Neuroscience still won’t explain author-initiated retractions
The Journal of Neuroscience hasn’t changed its policy of not explaining retractions if authors don’t want to, as this October 8 notice attests. Here’s the notice for “Coordinated Regulation of Hepatic Energy Stores by Leptin and Hypothalamic Agouti-Related Protein:” At the request of the authors, The Journal of Neuroscience is retracting “Coordinated Regulation of Hepatic Energy Stores by […]
8:14 AM | Paradosso cosmico
The Time Machine at the End of the World, di Les Edwardsvia ahiddenworld.tumblr.comCome tutti i generi, anche la fantascienza in ultima analisi è interessata a parlare dell'essere umano. In particolare, come ricorda Isaac Asimov, parla dell'essere umano contemporaneo, nascondendo il messaggio dietro una rappresentazione meravigliosa, dietro un sense of wonder dovuto a progressi scientifici inimmaginabili.I due progressi scientifici che muovono la maggior parte della fantascienza (non sono gli […]

October 18, 2014

1:30 PM | Weekend reads: “Too good to be true” results; the paper as an “artificial landmark”
The week at Retraction Watch kicked off with news of the European Science Foundation threatening to sue a scientist for calling a review process “flawed.” Here’s what was happening elsewhere: Now that’s self-awareness: Nature calls the peer-reviewed paper an “artificial landmark.” Are the findings in an epigenetics paper “too good to be true?“ Please congratulate […]

October 17, 2014

4:00 PM | “This situation left me ashamed and infuriated with myself:” Scientist retracts two papers
A Portuguese group has retracted two papers in the Journal of Bacteriology after mislabeled computer files led to the wrong images being used. And, we’ve learned in a heartfelt email, the first author was devastated. Here’s the notice for “MtvR Is a Global Small Noncoding Regulatory RNA in Burkholderia cenocepacia”: A number of problems related to images […]
1:30 PM | At a snail’s pace: Species rediscovered, but paper on its disappearance remains
A few weeks ago, in Weekend Reads, we highlighted the story of a snail species, thought to have gone extinct thanks to global warming, that had been rediscovered. Now, as first reported by The Scientist, the journal in question has addressed the issue. Here’s the story: In 2007, Biology Letters published a paper by Justin […]
8:30 AM | The deconstruction of paradoxes in epidemiology
If a “revolution” in our field or area of knowledge was ongoing, would we feel it and recognize it? And if so, how? I think a methodological “revolution” is probably going on in the science of epidemiology, but I’m not totally sure. Of course, in science not being sure is part of our normal state. And we mostly like it. The post The deconstruction of paradoxes in epidemiology appeared first on OUPblog.         Related StoriesCelebrating World […]

October 16, 2014

3:00 PM | Journal expresses concerns over “possible data irregularities” in paper from Army medical center docs
The Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology has issued an expression of concern about a 2012 article reporting the experience of military burn unit treating a rare ailment called toxic epidermal necrolysis. According to the notice, which is behind a paywall (for shame!), the paper appears to have overstated the number of cases the […]
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