paper-by-paper review

­­­­Paper-by-Paper report by Alirio J Melendez

24 October 2013

 

I am aware many questions are still being asked of me to prove my innocence following the allegations placed against me almost two years ago. Whatever happened to innocent before being proved guilty? And has anyone actually proven I am guilty? NO!

Unfortunately to ‘prove’ my innocence I would need to have full access to all my data, laboratory at NUS and work colleagues; I also keep asking the NUS to interview me but, as yet, they have never acknowledged my request nor given any answer. The NUS also created a report to determine my guilt which they say was ‘very thorough’, which nobody has ever seen because it is confidential according to NUS Internal Investigations Policy, a report in which I found several flaws immediately and reported back.  I still don’t want to publish this report without the NUS giving approval, as this may damage or affect my rights when I push for legal action.

However, I feel there has been a serious miscarriage of justice committed, which has severely damaged my career, so I have decided to release a paper-by-paper review of ‘findings’. I have had to omit specific names on certain papers, this is intentional to avoid libel action as physical proof may no longer exist. I am hoping this will answer a lot of questions being asked and cast doubt of my guilt.

I will add that in the papers where I was the corresponding author I am ultimately responsible for publishing the papers, so here I must accept responsibility. However I do not accept responsibility for any fraud or plagiarism as I did not do any of this.

 

Even with hindsight I’m not entirely convinced I would have found errors in most of the papers generated in my lab, as the NUS software didn’t raise plagiarism issues and I couldn’t visually see anything wrong with images, I had to trust the data produced by my team and other parties. You must also understand any paper being published is also reviewed by Peer Reviewers of the highest calibre; these reviewers also did not find anything wrong with the data when assessed for publication.  I must stress these issues have also arisen in the labs of Nobel Laureates and other highly esteemed scientists around the world

I have listed the 27 papers that were highlighted by NUS as containing errors, some of which have been retracted, however for quite a few of them I still cannot see anything wrong, each paper can be found on PubMed.  Seven of these papers belong to other laboratories so listing them as mine is factually incorrect, and “naming” them as mine is wrong.

 

The seven papers that follow below, were not my responsibility whatsoever, they were produced in other laboratories, my role was advisory in parts of the general outline of the study, or in supplying specialised reagents, but not in the execution of any part of the experiments nor in data analysis nor in manuscript writing.

 

Question; If the NUS investigation was so thorough how did they miss this information ???

___________________________________________

 

The following Papers should not be labelled as my responsibility, my role was advisory in parts of the general outline of the study, or in supplying specialised reagents, but not in the execution of any part of the experiments nor in data analysis nor in manuscript writing

Peng ZF, Koh CH, Li QT, Manikandan J, Melendez AJ, Tang SY, Halliwell B, Cheung NS. Neuropharmacology 2007, 53, 687-98.

NUS: The background surrounding the 32kDa and 17kDa bands in the gel shown in Figure 3B were distinctly different in intensity and rectilinear in shape. The bands appeared to be inserted into the figure. The authors and journal should be alerted. In addition, the DIC micrograph in Figure 1B was reused in a later publication. Nitric Oxide 2008.

AJM: This is a clear indication that the NUS investigation is flawed. My involvement in this paper was purely advisory on microarrays, I did not plan nor execute any experiments and did not contribute in the write up either. This paper was produced by another lab with which I collaborated but only on advice on microarrays, and not in the generation/analysis of any data nor in any write up.

 

Peng ZF, Chen MJ, Yap YW, Manikandan J, Melendez AJ, Choy MS, Moore PK, Cheung NS. Nitric Oxide 2008 Mar; 18(2), 136-45.

NUS: This paper contains light microscopy figures (Fig 2) that were previously published in Neuropharmacology (Fig 1 and Fig 3A). The same data is reported to show the results of cell death caused by HNE (Neuropharmacology) and NOC-18 (Nitric Oxide). The authors and journal should be alerted.

AJM: This is another clear indication that the NUS investigation is flawed. My involvement in this paper was purely advisory on the initial project design only. This paper was produced by another lab with which I collaborated but only on advice on microarrays and not in the generation/analysis of any data not in any write up.

 

Newman JP, Banerjee B, Fang W, Poonepalli A, Balakrishnan L, Low GK, Bhattacharjee RN, Akira S, Jayapal M, Melendez AJ, Baskar R, Lee HW, Hande MP. J Cell Physiol 2008 Mar; 214(3); 796-809. ERRATUM 20 MARCH 2012.

Editor’s Notice: In Newman et al., 2008, Figure 2 contained duplicate profiles in Fig 2H and 2 J. The correct Figure 2E to 2J is shown here. This error doesn’t have any influence on the data discussed and conclusions drawn in the article.

NUS: Figure 2 contained two identical FACS plots. The paper was amended in 2012 with an erratum correcting this error.

AJM: This is another clear indication that the NUS investigation is flawed. My involvement in this paper was purely advisory on the design of the microarrays part of the study only. Thus, this paper was produced by another lab with which I collaborated but only on advice on microarrays. I did not contribute in the generation/analysis of any data nor in any write up..

 

Dai X, Jayapal M, Tay HK, Reghunathan R, Lin G, Too CT, Lim YT, Chan SH, Kemeny DM, Floto RA, Smith KG, Melendez AJ, MacAry PA. Blood 2009 Jul 9;114(2):318-27.

NUS: This publication contains confocal micrographs that were generated by PA MacAry but later reproduced in the 2011 Nature Immunology paper. Dr. MacAry is redoing experiments originally provided by Melendez to verify the data reported in figures. The text in the introduction showed some similarity with text from a review Fcg receptor biology and systemic lupus erythematosus by V Jovanovic, X Dai, YT Lim, DM Kemeny, and PA MacAry in Int J. of Rheumatic Diseases 12:293-8 (2009). The authors and journal should be alerted to the problems

AJM: This is another clear indication that the NUS investigation is flawed. The questioned data for this paper was produced in Dr. McAry’s laboratory, I helped plan the project, advised on FcgR-signalling and helped in the write up of the a first manuscript draft which was later on largely redrafted by Dr. McAry. Moreover, members of my lab also contributed with data to this paper but none of the questioned data. Thus, this paper was largely produced by another lab, I personally did not contribute in the generation of any data nor with the manuscript as it went on to be published.

 

Lai WQ, Irwan AW, Goh HH, Melendez AJ, McInnes IB, Leung BP. J Immunol 2009 Jul 15;183(2):1413-8.

NUS: Figure 5D originated from Supplement Figure 2B in the 2009 Blood paper. A significant fraction of the introduction was plagiarized from the introduction to ‘the role of C5A in inflammatory responses’ published in Ann. Rev. Immunology (2005) by Guo and Ward. The authors and journal should be alerted.

AJM: This is a clear indication that the NUS investigation is flawed. This paper was produced in Dr. Leung Lab. I helped in the design of the project and advised on signalling but the data was produced in Dr. Leung’s laboratory under his supervision. Thus, I collaborated but only on planning the study and by advising on the signalling aspects, but not in the generation of any data nor in the write up.

 

Jayapal M, Bhattacharjee RN, Melendez AJ, Hande MP. Int. J Biochem Cell Biol 2010 Feb; 42(2):230-40.  RETRACTED MARCH 2013 (THOUGH NOTICE IN JUNE ISSUE)

Editor’s Notice: This article has been retracted at the request of the Editor-in-Chief. Data presented in this paper have been manipulated digitally. Figures shown in this article have been replicated in other papers depicting different experimental conditions. The other papers are: Puneet P, Yap CT, Wong L, Lam Y, Koh DR, Moochhala S, Pfeilschifter J, Huwiler A, Melendez AJ. SphK1 regulates proinflammatory responses associated with endotoxin and polymicrobial sepsis. Science 2010;328:1290–4.

NUS: Sections of the organization, text and references were highly similar to other  publications, for example, to a 2006 paper by Jayapal and Melendez published in CEPP. This issue should be raised with the authors and the journal.

AJM: This is a clear indication that the NUS investigation is flawed. This review paper was produced under Dr. Hande’s supervision. My role on this project was helping in the planning/design only. Thus, this paper was produced by another lab with which I collaborated but only advising in the initial stages and not in the generation of any of data generation/gathering nor in the write up.

 

Lai WQ, Melendez AJ, Leung BP. World J Biol Chem 2010 Nov 26; 1 (11): 321-6.

NUS: This review by Leung contains no data in figures. However, a 2012 review in Future Medicinal Chemistry (4:727-733 by Lai and Leung is very similar in organization and text. This potential self-plagiarism should be discussed with the authors.

AJM: This is another clear indication that the NUS investigation is flawed. This review paper was produced under Dr. Leung’s supervision. I helped plan the outline for the review but the paper was written in Dr. Leung’s laboratory under his supervision. Thus, this paper was produced by another lab with which I collaborated but only on giving advice and not in the generation of any part of data gathering nor in the write up.

 

The following Papers were retracted with which I still do not see anything wrong with them.

 

Melendez AJ, Ibrahim FB. J Immunol. 2004, 173, 1596-603.
RETRACTED 15 MARCH 2013.

Editor’s Notice: An investigation by the National University of Singapore concluded that Fig. 2A and 2C display irregular backgrounds that suggest the bands were improperly inserted. The investigation also concluded that Fig. 2A was duplicated in Zhi et al., Journal of Cellular Physiology, 2006, 208: 109–115, which has been retracted by Dr. Gary S. Stein, the Editor-in-Chief of that journal.

NUS: In this paper the blots in Figures 2A and 2C displayed irregular backgrounds that suggested the bands were improperly inserted. The committee recommends these irregularities be made known.

AJM: I am not sure if irregularities were committed in Fig. 2A and 2C. However, it does appear that Fig. 2A was indeed duplicated by Zhi in JCP, 2006, 208: 109-115. I still cannot see any irregularities with this paper.

 

Sethu S, Mendez-Corao G, Melendez AJ. J Immunol 2008 May 1;180(9), 6027-34. RETRACTED 15 MARCH 2013.

Editor’s Notice: Swaminathan Sethu. I wish to retract the article “Phospholipase D1 Plays a Key Role in TNF-α Signaling” by Swaminathan Sethu, Grecia Mendez-Corao, and Alirio J. Melendez, The Journal of Immunology, 2008, 180: 6027–6034. An investigation by the National University of Singapore concluded that in Fig. 1C, three cells in the 5 and 10 min points appear identical, but rearranged in location. The investigation also concluded that the cells in the 2, 5, and 10 min time points in Fig. 6B were identical to the 5, 15, and 30 min time points in Fig. 1A in Pushparaj et al. (The Journal of Immunology, 2009, 183: 221–227), which has been retracted.

NUS: This paper contains problematic data. In the fluorescence micrographs shown in Figure 1C, three cells (asterisk) in the 5 and 10 minute time points appear identical but rearranged in location. Other micrographs were manipulated in the same manner and reused in publication (J Immunol 2009). The cells in 2, 5, and 10 min time points in Figure 6B (JI 2008) were identical to the 5, 15, and 30 min time points in Figure 1A of JI 2009. The authors and the journal should be alerted to these problems.

AJM: I do not agree with the first part of the NUS report for this paper. The second part that some time points are identical to a paper published “later on” by P. Pushparaj and which was retracted is true, however, as stated “a paper published later on”. I still cannot see anything wrong with this paper.

 

Papers in which the NUS report shows concern, which have not been retracted, and for most of them I disagree with the NUS report.

 

Jayapal M, Tay HK, Reghunathan R, Zhi L, Chow KK, Rauff M, Melendez AJ. BMC Genomics 2006, Aug 16, 7, 210.

NUS: The committee did not detect artefacts associated with the figures. However, the introduction to the paper was significantly identical to Kawakami and Gilli, Nature Review Immunology 2002. This misconduct should be made aware to BMC Genomics and the authors.

AJM: As we all know the introduction to many papers of a specific research area have many similarities as they embody the knowledge generated on the area. Thus, similarities will always exist in all papers of the same area. I do not see any reason for concern in this paper.

 

Melendez AJ, Harnett MM, Pushparaj PN, Wong WS, Tay HK, McSharry CP, Harnett W. Nat Med. 2007 13 1375-81.

NUS: Gels, micrographs and text of this publication were examined. There was a possible evidence of cut and paste of a cell in panel S1D from Figure F1C and F5D in 11. JBC 2002 and F6C in  JBC 2004. The suspicion was based on evidence of cut and paste of cells in other figures.

AJM: I disagree with the NUS report. Moreover at the time of the initial investigation I produced the original gel-image in the original radiographic paper. This should have straightened out any doubt.

 

Melendez AJ. Biochim Biophys Acta, 2008, Jan; 1784(1) 66-75.

NUS: This single authored review is highly similar and in many sections identical (including references) to the text from a previous review (Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol 2005) by HK Tay and AJ Melendez. The committee concludes that as sole author Dr. Melendez was responsible for the self-plagiarism of the text from his previous review paper. This plagiarism should be disclosed to the journal.

AJM: This was a paper generated for a conference proceeding the topic was of the conference talk was the same as the previously written review article (which I co-wrote with Dr. Tay) and published in CEPP in 2005. Some of the text did indeed come from the previous publication. Most of conference proceeding contain previously published text, the principal aim for conferences is to bring up published results in a macro-concept.

 

Melendez AJ, Tay HK. Biosci Rep 2008 Oct 28(5), 287-98.

NUS: The text of this review was largely self-plagiarized from Chapter 9 “Calcium signaling during phagocytosis” by AJ Melendez in Molecular Mechanisms of Phagocytosis, ed. Carlos Rosales, Medical Intelligence Unit, 2005, Springer.   Bioscience Reports should be alerted.

AJM: This review article was primarily written by Dr. Tay, the topic of this review is very similar as the book chapter mentioned which I wrote. However, I disagree that it was “largely self-plagiarised” as stated by the NUS report.

 

Melendez AJ. Molecular Mechanisms of Phagocytosis, Springer Science 2005.

NUS: This 2005 book chapter reviews the topic of the title. A section of the review was plagiarized from a 2002 review in Current Biology by Bootman. The editor and publisher should be alerted. Melendez is the sole author of the review.

AJM: In this book chapter, similarities exist with the above mentioned paper as will always exist when book chapters are written on a particular research area and either large review articles and or prior chapters have been written since they are generated primarily to “update” the knowledge that have been generated in a specific area. However, the NUS statement that the chapter plagiarized any article is misleading to say the least, as available software will show there was no plagiarism.

 

The following Papers have been retracted with which I agree with the retraction.

 

Melendez AJ, Khaw AK. J Biol Chem 2002, 2077, 17255-62.
RETRACTED 9 APRIL 2013.

Editor’s Notice: This article has been retracted by the publisher. An investigation by the National University of Singapore determined that duplicated images were included in Figs. 1C and 5D.

NUS: ‘Immunofluorescence micrographs in panels F1C and F5D contain the same cell. The cells are reused in publication JBC2004.

AJM: Yes indeed it appears that similar cells were reutilised. I conceived the project and designed the study, however, I did not generate any of the questioned data for this paper and could not see there was anything wrong with the paper at the time, nor did the peer reviewers.

 

Tay HK, Melendez AJ. J Biol Chem 2004, 279, 22505-13.
RETRACTED 9 APRIL 2013

Editor’s Notice: This article has been retracted by the publisher. An investigation by the National University of Singapore determined that duplicated images were included in Figs. 4C and 7A, and images in Fig. 4D were published previously in Fig. 5E of Melendez, A. J., and Khaw, K. A. (2002) J. Biol. Chem. 277, 17255–17262.

NUS: Figures 4C and 7A contain identical fluorescence micrographs. In addition F4D appear in a previously published in F5E of JBC 2002. The figures maybe composites produced by “cut-and-paste” of individual cells from other figures. Dr Tay did not produce the data in this paper. The committee recommends the irregularities in this paper be made known.

AJM: In the NUS report they state that “Dr Tay did not produce the data in this paper” how do they come to this conclusion ?, it is of general knowledge that, at least in biomedical sciences, the first author of a paper is the one who produces most of the data. I conceived the project and designed the study, however, I did not generate any of the questioned data for this paper and could not visually see there was anything wrong with the paper at the time, nor did the peer reviewers.

 

Pushparaj PN, Melendez AJ. Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol 2006, 33, 504-10. Review. RETRACTED 30 MARCH 2013.

Editor’s Notice: The retraction has been agreed following an investigation by the National University of Singapore (http://www.nus.edu.sg/) into the publications of A.J. Melendez which uncovered substantial overlap between this article and two previously published articles: Ryther RCC, Flynt AS, Phillips JA III, Patton JG. siRNA therapeutics: big potential from small RNAs. Gene Ther. 2005; 12: 5–11, doi: 10.1038/sj.gt.3302356. Karagiannis TC, El-Osta A. RNA interference and potential therapeutic applications of short interfering RNAs. Cancer Gene Ther. 2005; 12: 787–795, doi: 10.1038/sj.cgt.7700857. NOTE ALSO LETTERS FROM CO-AUTHORS AT             http://retractionwatch.wordpress.com/2013/04/15/retraction-12-appears-for-alirio-melendez-this-one-for-plagiarism/#more-13690.

NUS: The plagiarism software, iThenticate detected high similarity (30%) of text to a 2005 Cancer Gene Therapy paper by Karagiannis and El-Osta and additional example of plagiarism of text (10%) from a 2005 Gene Therapy paper by Ryther et al. The committee finds that a significant portion of text is plagiarized and includes identical references. This review should be retracted.

AJM: This is a review article. I conceived the project and designed the outline for the paper, however the article was written by Dr. Peter Pushparaj, I edited it but could not see anything wrong with the paper at the time nor did the reviewers.

 

Zhi L, Leung BP, Melendez AJ. J Cell Physiol. 2006, 208, 109-15.
RETRACTED 20 MARCH 2012.

Editor’s Notice: Retracted by the Editor in Chief, Dr. Gary S. Stein, and Wiley Periodicals, Inc The retraction has been made due to concern regarding duplication of Figure 2, panel A, in Journal of Cellular Physiology with Figure 2, panel A, in the following article: ‘Antisense Knockdown of Sphingosine Kinase 1 in Human Macrophages Inhibits C5a Receptor-Dependent Signal Transduction, Ca2þSignals, Enzyme Release, Cytokine Production, and Chemotaxis’ by Alirio J. Melendez and Farazeela Bte Mohd Ibrahim, Journal of Immunology, Volume 173, pp. 1596–1603.

NUS: The committee detected artefacts in figure 2a suggesting bands and background were altered. Subsequently, the paper was retracted by the authors and editor in chief of the journal.

AJM: This paper does contain several causes for concern including potential plagiarism of text and inclusion of previously published results.  I conceived the project and designed the study, however, I did not generate any of the questioned data and did not write the original manuscript. I did not see any irregularities at the time nor did the peer reviewers

 

Pushparaj PN, H’ng SC, Melendez AJ. Int J Biochem Cell Biol 2008, 40(9), 1817-25. RETRACTED 14 MARCH 2013.

Editor’s Notice: This article has been retracted at the request of the Editor-in-Chief. Data presented in this paper have been manipulated digitally.

NUS: This paper contained figures later published in 45. PNAS (2009) Nature Immunology (2011) and Science (2010) and documented in our earlier report on the Science and Nature Immunology papers. During the interview with Dr Padmam Puneet, she provided the original histological micrographs which she generated in 2007 for experiments on CLP-treated mice. Although she generated the histological data, Dr. Puneet was not a co-author on this paper.

AJM: I conceived the project and designed the study. As far as I know all the questioned data for this paper was generated by Dr. Peter Pushparaj. The NUS report suggest that the data was generated by Dr. Padmam Puneet and appear in this paper, how do they come to this conclusion ? However, to me at the time Dr. P. Pushparaj claimed that he generated these data. I was not aware of any irregularities at the time nor did the peer reviewers.

 

Pushparaj PN, Tay HK, H’ng SC, Pitman N, Xu D, McKenzie A, Liew FY, Melendez AJ. PNAS 2009 Jun 16;106(24); 9773-8.
RETRACTED 21 AUG 2012.

Editor’s Notice: The undersigned authors wish to note the following: “The panels in Fig. 2B1 and 2D3 are identical and used in a later paper (1), now retracted. The panels in Fig. 3E4 and 3E9 are used in two later publications, one that has been retracted (2) and one that has an expression of concern (3). Although we believe the overall message of the paper is correct, we can no longer consider the findings to be reliable. Accordingly, we wish to retract the paper. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience caused to other investigators.” Peter N. Pushparaj Hwee Kee Tay, Shiau Chen H’ng Nick Pitman Damo Xu Andrew McKenzie Foo Y. Liew.

NUS: Several examples of fabrication were documented in this paper. 1. Micrographs of stained tissues in panels F2b(1) and F2D(3) were identical, Figures F2B94) and F2F(5) were identical. These two sets of panels were also published as Figures F4C(1) and F4C(6) in publication (JI 183;221, 2009). 2. Panels F3E (7) and (9) were derived from the same tissue. 3. Previous investigation of the H&E stained tissues in Figure 4B of the Science 2011 paper and Figure 5B Nature Immunology 2011 paper determined that they were from the same original image. This image was previously published in part in PNAS (this paper) and the 2008 Int. J. Biochem Cell Biol paper. The editor of PNAS and the co-authors of this paper should be alerted to the discrepancies found.

AJM: I do fully agree with the investigation on this paper. I conceived the project and designed the study, however, I did not generate any of the questioned data. As far as I know, Dr. P. Pushparaj generated all the questioned data. I could not see anything wrong with this paper at the time, nor did my colleagues or the peer reviewers.

 

Pushparaj PN, Manikandan J, Tay HK, H’ng SC, Kumar SD, Pfeilschifter J, Huwiler A, Melendez AJ. J Immunol 2009 Jul 1;183(1); 221-7.
RETRACTED 15 SEPT 2012.

Editor’s Notice: Peter N. Pushparaj Hwee Kee Tay Josef Pfeilschifter Andrea Huwiler  An investigation by the University of Glasgow concluded that identical images have been used to depict different experimental conditions in other publications. Specifically, in Fig. 4c, the image in panel 1 (IgE-sensitized and saline challenged control mice [WT plus IgE plus PBS]) was previously published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (2009, 106: 9773–9778) in Fig. 2 panel B1 (wild-type mouse injected with PBS alone), in Fig. 2 panel D3 (RAG1−/− mouse challenged with IL-33 alone), and in Supplementary Fig. S1

NUS: This paper has fluorescence images of cells (Figure 1A) that were identical to cells published in Figure 6C of J. Immunology 2008. The pattern suggested the panels were composite of cell/cells made by cut and paste. The authors and journal should be alerted to the problem with the paper. Interviews with Pfeilschifter and Huwiler documented that they contributed cells and animals but not data. Interviews with HK Tay also revealed that she did not contribute figures to this paper or the PNAS paper. The origin of the micrographs is unknown.

AJM: I do fully agree with the investigation on this paper. I conceived the project and designed the study, however, I did not generate any of the questioned data. As far as I know all the questioned data was generated by Dr. P. Pushparaj and Mr. J. Manikandan. I did not see this at the time, nor did my colleagues or the peer reviewers.

 

Puneet P, Yap CT, Wong L, Lam Y, Koh DR, Moochhala S, Pfeilschifter J, Huwiler A, Melendez AJ. Science 2010 Jun 4;328(5983):1290-4. EXPRESSION OF CONCERN 3 OCT 2011. RETRACTED JULY 2013.

NUS: This publication was investigated in an earlier report and was found to contain figures reproduced from earlier published papers. The problem was reported to the journal which has published a “Concern”. Final action by the journal is pending their discussion with the authors.

Retraction Watch: The National University of Singapore has completed an investigation into the irregularities in this paper and has concluded that sole responsibility for the irregularities rests with author Melendez.

AJM: The claim of NUS in retraction watch is completely untrue since I personally did not generate any of the questioned data, and the questioned data and initial manuscript drafts were generated by the first author. I conceived the project and designed the study, however, I did not see any irregularities at the time nor did my colleagues nor the peer reviewers.

 

He X, H’ng SC, Leong DT, Hutmacher DW, Melendez AJ. J Mol Cel Biol 2010. Aug ;2(4):199-208. RETRACTED 29 NOV 2011.

Editor’s Notice: This paper has been retracted by its authors and the journal’s Editor-in-Chief because irregularities have been identified in some of the figures that render two of its major conclusions unsound: (i) that both human adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells and bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells express all of the five sphingosine-1-phosphate-receptors; and (ii) that no significant changes were observed in cells grown under the different culture conditions.

NUS: This paper has been retracted by the authors and the journal.

AJM: Indeed, there were irregularities in some of the data and thus we retracted the paper. I conceived the project and designed the study, however, I did not generate any of the questioned data for this paper, nor was I aware of anything wrong with the paper at the time. I did not see any irregularities at the time, nor did my colleagues or the peer reviewers.

 

Puneet P, McGrath MA, Tay HK, Al-Riyami L, Rzepecka J, Moochhala SM, Pervaiz S, Harnett MM, Harnett W, Melendez AJ. Nat Immunol 2011 Apr;12(4):344-51. RETRACTED 24 JUNE 2011.

Editor’s Notice: The authors wish to note the following. Irregularities have been identified in some of the figures in this paper. The conclusions drawn from these data, that ES-62 protects against the development of pathology in the sepsis models and results in the induction of autophagy in macrophages, cannot be made. As these conclusions constitute major components of the paper, we wish to retract this paper.

NUS: This paper was retracted from Nature Immunology on July 19 2011 after investigation by the NUS and UK committees.

AJM: Indeed several irregularities were pointed out on data. I conceived the project and designed the study, however, I did not generate any of the questioned data for this paper nor could see there was anything wrong with the paper at the time, nor did my colleagues or the peer reviewers. However, as soon as this was pointed out (by an anonymous letter) I was the first to seek the retraction of the paper.

 

SUMMARY

Based on my analysis of the report provided to me by the National University of Singapore (NUS) it is obvious they made several mistakes in their own analysis, casting doubt over the entire allegation and the manner in which my case was handled, which in my opinion was very unfair and one-sided.

I will keep fighting for my right to be heard and to clear my name of the allegations for which I am accused, for which I  maintain my complete innocence.