Archive by date | December 2012

Immunologist accused of misconduct in 21 papers

After a 19-month investigation, the National University of Singapore (NUS) today says that it has determined that one of its former scientists, the immunologist Alirio Melendez, has committed “serious scientific misconduct”.  The university found fabrication, falsification or plagiarism associated with 21 papers, and no evidence indicating that other co-authors were involved in the misconduct, it says.  Read more

Spanish scientists take to the streets

Are Spain's brains flying away like balloons?

Researchers gathered in more than a dozen Spanish cities this morning to protest against drastic cuts to the country’s science budget. The demonstrations were organized by the Open Letter for Science group, a platform uniting the main scientific organizations in the country, including scientific societies, unions, university rectors, and researchers’ associations.  Read more

NIH sends chimps to sanctuary with help from animal activists

Chimpanzees at the New Iberia Research Center in Louisiana will soon have a new home.

In the latest step toward shrinking chimpanzee research in the US, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced on 18 December a plan to retire its stock of 113 research animals from the New Iberia Research Center (NIRC) in Louisiana to Chimp Haven, a federally funded sanctuary in Keithsville, Louisiana.  Read more

Bulgarian scientists’ corruption protest slams PM’s mobile phone

Bulgarian scientists' corruption protest slams PM's mobile phone

Over 100 young Bulgarian scientists staged a second protest in Sofia yesterday, demanding that a competition for 14.8 million Lev ($9.8 million) from the Bulgarian National Science Fund (BNSF) be scrapped. They claim the winners were selected corruptly. They also demanded the resignation of research minister Sergei Ignatov, who has not addressed their corruption concerns.  Read more

Research beagles released as pets

Beagle dogs at the Chennai quarantine facility await transfer to rescue groups.

Seventy beagle puppies originally intended for pharmacology research were released to adoptive families in India on Saturday, several weeks after activists alerted the Indian government that the animals had been falsely described as “pets” by the contract research organization seeking to import them.  Read more

Is the scientific literature self-correcting?

A session on scientific reproducibility today quickly became a discussion about perverse incentives. Robust research takes more time and complicates otherwise compelling stories. This turns scientists who cut corners into rising stars while discouraging the diligent. It also produces highly-cited scientific publications that cannot be reproduced.  Read more