Table 1

Classification of retractions (N=312)

1Honest error(a) based on incorrect/fraudulent* data1028
(b) research error (eg, wrong cell line)44
(c) calculation error/inaccurate data33
2Could not replicate findings(a) same authors3111
(b) different authors4
3Journal (administrative) error31
4Redundant publication(a) complete (ie, duplicate/triplicate publication)3417
(b) partial (ie, overlapping publications)20
5PlagiarismAmount unspecified616
(a) total (ie, whole paper copied)4
(b) partial—data only7
(c) partial—text only18
(d) partial—data and text14
6Data used without permission/author dispute175
7Fabricated data165
8Falsified data134
9Ethical problems with research41
10Misconduct (unspecified)102
11Inaccurate/misleading reporting124
12No reason/unclear175
  • * For example, calculations based on published work by another group that later turned out to be fraudulent, therefore the inclusion of the fraudulent data was an honest error on the part of the second group of researchers.