Lack of involvement of medical writers and the pharmaceutical industry in publications retracted for misconduct: A systematic, controlled, retrospective study

Woolley, Karen L., Lew, Rebecca A., Bramich, Narelle J., Keys, Janelle R., Monk, Julie A. and Woolley, Mark J. (2011) Lack of involvement of medical writers and the pharmaceutical industry in publications retracted for misconduct: A systematic, controlled, retrospective study. Current Medical Research and Opinion, 27 6: 1175-1182. doi:10.1185/03007995.2011.573546


Author Woolley, Karen L.
Lew, Rebecca A.
Bramich, Narelle J.
Keys, Janelle R.
Monk, Julie A.
Woolley, Mark J.
Title Lack of involvement of medical writers and the pharmaceutical industry in publications retracted for misconduct: A systematic, controlled, retrospective study
Journal name Current Medical Research and Opinion   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0300-7995
1473-4877
Publication date 2011-06
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1185/03007995.2011.573546
Volume 27
Issue 6
Start page 1175
End page 1182
Total pages 8
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher Informa Healthcare
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Objectives:
The primary objective of this study was to quantify how many publications retracted because of misconduct involved declared medical writers (i.e., not ghostwriters) or declared pharmaceutical industry support. The secondary objective was to investigate factors associated with misconduct retractions.

Design:

A systematic, controlled, retrospective, bibliometric study.

Data source:

Retracted publications dataset in the MEDLINE database.

Data selection:
PubMed was searched (Limits: English, human, January 1966 – February 2008) to identify publications retracted because of misconduct. Publications retracted because of mistake served as the control group. Standardized definitions and data collection tools were used, and data were analyzed by an independent academic statistician.

Results:

Of the 463 retracted publications retrieved, 213 (46%) were retracted because of misconduct. Publications retracted because of misconduct rarely involved declared medical writers (3/213; 1.4%) or declared pharmaceutical industry support (8/213; 3.8%); no misconduct retractions involved both declared medical writers and the industry. Retraction because of misconduct, rather than mistake, was significantly associated with: absence of declared medical writers (odds ratio: 0.16; 95% confidence interval: 0.05–0.57); absence of declared industry involvement (0.25; 0.11–0.58); single authorship (2.04; 1.01–4.12); first author having at least one other retraction (2.05; 1.35–3.11); and first author affiliated with a low/middle income country (2.34; 1.18–4.63). The main limitations of this study were restricting the search to English-language and human research articles.

Conclusions:
Publications retracted because of misconduct rarely involved declared medical writers or declared pharmaceutical industry support. Increased attention should focus on factors that are associated with misconduct retractions.
Keyword Drug industry
Medical writer
Medical writing
Plagiarism
Retraction of publication as topic
Scientific misconduct
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Publications
 
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Created: Wed, 05 Oct 2011, 13:22:30 EST by Karen Woolley on behalf of School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences