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Retraction and republication—a new tool for correcting the scientific record?

Issue: 42(1) February 2016. Original articles Pages 3 – 8

Hannah Cagney
The Lancet, London, UK; [email protected]

Richard Horton
The Lancet, London, UK

Astrid James
The Lancet, London, UK

Sabine Kleinert
The Lancet, London, UK

Zena Nyakoojo
The Lancet, London, UK

Laura Pryce
The Lancet, London, UK

Emma Grainger
The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, London, UK

Diana Stanley
The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, London, UK

Helena Wang
The Lancet, Beijing, China


Mistakes in the scientific literature are reasonably common; however, the available methods to communicate corrections to published articles or retract unreliable findings do not always meet the needs of readers, authors, editors, and publishers. In this article, we propose an innovative process of retraction and republication: the purpose of this instrument is to correct the scientific literature for situations in which a published article is realized to contain pervasive error, but still contains important scientific findings. We present two case studies of its use in The Lancet and The Lancet Respiratory Medicine


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