Nature pulls GSK paper

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Nature has officially dumped a 2010 research article about a then-experimental MS medication via retraction, reports BioCentury. The retracted paper came under scrutiny earlier this year, after GlaxoSmithKline fired its research head in China, Jiangwu Zang, upon “discovering that a study...contained misrepresentation of data,” according to Reuters which covered the firing in June.

The employee dismissal was soon followed by coverage in which Liu Xuebin, one of the other dismissed researchers, told Bloomberg in August that GSK created a high-stress, competitive environment in which mistakes can happen and corners cut. He also said that the MS study, which labeled healthy MS cells as from healthy subjects, should not be thrown out.

GSK said in a statement Dec. 5 that it investigated the matter and recommended Nature retract the paper. The company said in the statement that it “still believes the investigational drug and the signaling pathway may have potential in other disease states,” but that it is no longer exploring the MS application. GSK said a total of five R&D employees associated with the paper (which had 18 authors) are no longer with the company.

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