Large Ivermectin Study Retracted — Preprint publisher finds evidence of plagiarism, problems with raw data

Johnatan56

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A large Egyptian study of ivermectin for COVID-19 patients has been retracted over concerns of plagiarism and serious problems with their raw data, the publisher confirmed to MedPage Today.

Michele Avissar-Whiting, PhD, editor-in-chief of the preprint server Research Square, said in an emailed statement that the study was withdrawn on July 14 "because we were presented with evidence of both plagiarism and anomalies in the dataset associated with the study, neither of which could reasonably be addressed by the author issuing a revised version of the paper."

Avissar-Whiting noted that the concerns were first raised by Jack Lawrence, a British medical student, according to The Guardian.

"Based on what Jack found, we have reason to believe the preprint's conclusions are compromised, so the withdrawal was done to stop its propagation as sound science," she said. "This is the strategy employed by a number of preprint servers, per best practice guidance."

The study was one of the largest ivermectin trials in the world, and has been included in two recent meta-analyses (Bryant et al. and Hill et al.) that received much attention for their positive results -- particularly the Hill review, which had been anticipated by a U.S. group that has long promoted ivermectin.

Some have questioned whether the positive conclusions of those meta-analyses would still stand when the Egyptian study is removed.

David Boulware, MD, MPH, of the University of Minnesota, told MedPage Today that the 400-patient Egyptian trial -- from Ahmed Elgazzar, MD, of Benha University, and colleagues -- was the largest study included in the Hill review and accounted for 20% of the total data.

 

Johnatan56

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Issues picked up:
- plagiarism, lifting entire paragraphs from press releases and websites
- discrepancies with the raw data (the source data can be purchased)
- 1/3 of patients were already dead by the time the study started
- 25% of trial patients were hospitalized before the study started

This invalidates the Egyptian study of 400 patients.

This is why you don't quote pre-print stuff.
 

Gordon_R

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So, how many papers need to be retracted, before the meta-analysis shows zero efficacy?
 

Johnatan56

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So, how many papers need to be retracted, before the meta-analysis shows zero efficacy?
Any of the ones that said definite will probably be retracted if they followed anything within normal concentrations and delivery mechanism.

Way too many disproving it that have had a lot of scientific scrutiny, IVM to begin with should never have had an effect based on how it works, that's why most doctors who knew anything about it instantly questioned the result and its been the disinformation campaign that made some doctors believe it, since enough papers twisted and/or manufacturered enough truth.

Most people easily believe the first truth they encounter, it's a lot more difficult to change their opinion than it is to form the initial one, which is why the issue with IVM, all the other stuff, and why the vaccine hesitancy (as most don't understand the process of how vaccines are approved, then believe the first loud voice that sounds halfway authoritive).
 

Magnum

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Is it Plagiarism when a person peer-reviews a peers work and confirms his finding?
 

Gordon_R

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Is it Plagiarism when a person peer-reviews a peers work and confirms his finding?

There is no copyright on facts, but when all your data and conclusions are identical to another study, that tends to raise eyebrows. Lots of fabrications are caught out by making elementary statistical and methodological errors, and copying wholesale from other sources.
 
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