Whoo boy. This sounds like a familiar climate episode. Andrew Revkin tips me to this retraction of a paper that got screaming headlines worldwide, and says this along with the photo. (Warning don’t click “continue reading” while eating Thanksgiving dinner).
Yes, I wonder.
Retraction Watch writes:
A heavily criticized study of the effects of genetically modified maize and the Roundup herbicide on rats is being retracted — one way or another.
The paper — by Gilles Seralini and colleagues — was published in Food and Chemical Toxicology last year. There have been calls for retraction since then, along with other criticism and a lengthy exchange of letters in the journal. Meanwhile, the paper has been cited 28 times, according to Thomson Scientific’s Web of Knowledge, and the French National Assembly (their lower house of Parliament) held a long hearing on the paper last year, with Seralini and other scientists testifying.
The language in the letter seems quite familiar to WUWT and CA readers. This would never have been found out if not for the raw data. Note the language about it:
Very shortly after the publication of this article, the journal received Letters to the Editor expressing concerns about the validity of the findings it described, the proper use of animals, and even allegations of fraud. Many of these letters called upon the editors of the journal to retract the paper. According to the journal’s standard practice, these letters, as well as the letters in support of the findings, were published along with a response from the authors. Due to the nature of the concerns raised about this paper, the Editor-in-Chief examined all aspects of the peer review process and requested permission from the corresponding author to review the raw data. The request to view raw data is not often made; however, it is in accordance with the journal’s policy that authors of submitted manuscripts must be willing to provide the original data if so requested. The corresponding author agreed and supplied all material that was requested by the Editor-in-Chief. The Editor-in-Chief wishes to acknowledge the co-operation of the corresponding author in this matter, and commends him for his commitment to the scientific process.
Unequivocally, the Editor-in-Chief found no evidence of fraud or intentional misrepresentation of the data. However, there is legitimate cause for concern regarding both the number of animals in each study group and the particular strain selected. The low number of animals had been identified as a cause for concern during the initial review process, but the peer-review decision ultimately weighed that the work still had merit despite this limitation. A more in-depth look at the raw data revealed that no definitive conclusions can be reached with this small sample size regarding the role of either NK603 or glyphosate in regards to overall mortality or tumor incidence. Given the known high incidence of tumors in the Sprague-Dawley rat, normal variability cannot be excluded as the cause of the higher mortality and incidence observed in the treated groups.
Need for the raw data, low sample size numbers, normal variability, cherry picking specific subjects?
Sounds like Yamalian dendroclimatology:
They even have a ranting demanding scientist to go along with it:
Seralini — whom, as we note, tried to get reporters to sign a non-disclosure agreement when the study was first being released, a move Ivan called an outrageous abuse of the embargo system designed to turn reporters into stenographers — rejected Hayes’ findings, according toLe Figaro. And GMWatch called Hayes’ decision “illicit, unscientific, and unethical.”
Hmmm, now who does that remind you of?
IMHO, science by zealotry never advances truth.
UPDATE: Elsevier issues a press release from Cambridge, MA, on Thanksgiving Day even…
Elsevier Announces Article Retraction from Journal Food and Chemical Toxicology
“Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize,” by Gilles Eric Séralini et al. has been retracted by the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology
Cambridge, MA, November 28, 2013Elsevier announces that the article “Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize,” by Gilles Eric Séralini et al. has been retracted by the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology.
The journal has issued the following retraction statement: