Beware the Ides of March: March Retraction Report

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Another month, another set of retractions! Thankfully, most researchers out there had a better month than Caesar.

We’re trying a new format for this month. We’ll be talking through the data here on PubTrawlr’s blog page, and then linking to the full dataset. Over this past month, we’ve seen 31 retractions.

a bar graph showing journals with more than one retraction for March

Journals that have had more than one retraction in the past month.

So, what’s the deal with Cureus?

Cureus is an interesting journal. They claim to have a very fast peer-review-to-publication process, with the goal being to speed up the dissemination of emergent findings. Basically, anyone can review a paper, although it gives more weight to the opinions of registered experts. Imagine a more controlled Wikipedia. This approach has the potential to get many more critical eyes on a project. Further, there’s a pretty substantial post-review process. For the Cureus articles this month, check out this retraction notice:

This article has been retracted based on the discovery that the submitting author, Dr. Ahmed Elkhouly, invited his wife to serve as a peer reviewer without properly disclosing this relationship. As this fraudulent peer review was completed and taken into consideration when determining whether to publish this article, Cureus has no choice but to retract this article due to this author misconduct and falsification of peer review.  An additional four articles submitted by Dr. Elkhouly have been retracted for the same reason. Cureus greatly regrets that these fraudulent peer reviews were not identified prior to publication. Dr. Elkhouly’s residency program has been notified as is consistent with COPE guidelines.

Et tu, Dr. Elkhouly? That’s a pretty good catch, and a pretty good reason to retract.

Hello again to Marty Hinz!

The two retractions from Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment come again from Marty Hinz, whose’s been, as my old substance abuse recovery client used to say, “some type of day.” You can read all about it at Retraction Watch.

To learn more:

Click on this link for the full dataset.

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