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July 13, 1994

Scientific Misconduct in Environmental Science and Toxicology

Author Affiliations

From the Citrus Research and Education Center, University of Florida, Lake Alfred (Dr Nigg), and Journals Division, Springer-Verlag, New York, NY (Ms Radulescu).

JAMA. 1994;272(2):168-170. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03520020094028

Scientific misconduct easily occurs in environmental science and toxicology; we encountered four such cases. Only one case was discovered by editors; three were reported by other authors. All guilty authors were eventually banned from future publication in the Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. Cases in the Bulletin indicate that scientific misconduct may occur undetected across phyla, genera, and species; that distance from the publishing source makes detection more difficult; that editors and reviewers are not organized to take action against scientific misconduct; that plagiarized authors are likely to report plagiarism; and that there is only a small risk of censure from any source for authors engaging in scientific misconduct.

(JAMA. 1994;272:168-170)