Does a paywall protect patient privacy?

A psychoanalyst has retracted an award-winning 2016 paper over concerns that it contained “sensitive” patient information. On July 15, Judith L. Mitrani, a psychoanalyst based in California, published an article that included “sensitive clinical material” about a patient. Although we do not know what prompted the concerns, on November 21, Mitrani, in agreement with the journal’s editor-in-chief and publisher, […]

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Students withdraw report of private stem cell retreat

Master’s students have retracted a review of an internal meeting of stem cell researchers because it contained confidential information. According to the Managing Director of the society, Stem Cell Network North Rhine Westphalia (NRW), the event was not open to the public, and the authors had not contacted either the society or the scientists they cited […]

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Study of child with rare cancer retracted due to lack of parental consent

Researchers in Ireland have retracted a case study about a rare type of cancer in a child because – contrary to what they claimed in the paper – they had not obtained the necessary permission from the parents. In the June 2016 article, the authors stated they had received “written informed consent” from the parents […]

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Journal retracts surgery study with data “not intended for use in research”

A journal has retracted a surgery study by researchers at Brown University after noticing it included data that was not intended for research purposes. (Incidentally, the data were collected by the publisher of the journal.) Ingrid Philbert, managing editor of the Journal of Graduate Medical Education — which published the paper — told Retraction Watch […]

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Study errors “may have placed you or your child at a greater risk of harm”: 2014 letter to parents

Three psychiatric studies of children contained a myriad of problems that may have put participants at greater risk than was disclosed by consent forms, according to a 2014 letter sent to hundreds of the participants and their families. Through a public records request, we’ve obtained a copy of the letter — which lists a host of problems in […]

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Authors retract paper lacking approval to study asthma in athletes

The authors of a 2014 study about asthma in Norwegian athletes have retracted it after realizing they hadn’t obtained proper approval from an ethical committee. The study’s first and corresponding author of the study in the British Journal of Sports Medicine — Julie Stang from the Norwegian School of Sports Sciences in Oslo — told […]

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Should journals reject papers solely on ethical grounds?

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 […]

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Cardiovascular researcher in Taiwan logs four retractions

A researcher has earned four retractions following an investigation at his institutions in Taiwan. The retraction notices, which appear in Clinical Science, mention investigations into the work of Kou-Gi Shyu at the Shin-Kong Wu Ho-Su Memorial Hospital and Taipei Medical University (TMU). Shyu is listed as being affiliated with both institutions in the original papers, but […]

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Child psychiatrist flagged for misconduct loses two more papers

A child psychiatrist has lost two papers after an institutional investigation concluded that she intentionally misrepresented children’s medication history in her research. In November 2015, we reported on a retraction for Mani Pavuluri in the Journal of Psychiatry & Neuroscience following a probe at the University of Illinois at Chicago, her institution, which concluded that there was a […]

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Does your work need IRB approval? Better check, says author of retracted paper

Does an article that discusses anonymized student projects about how to catalog data count as research on human subjects? One of the students included in the paper thought so, and complained to the journal after learning that it had published the case study of the program without the approval required for studying people. The authors admitted […]

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