In DepthBiomedical Research

Calling all failed replication experiments

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Science  05 Feb 2016:
Vol. 351, Issue 6273, pp. 548
DOI: 10.1126/science.351.6273.548

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A growing number of retracted papers have stirred concerns about irreproducible results in biomedical research. Now, the biotech company Amgen and prominent biochemist Bruce Alberts have created a new online journal that aims to lift the curtain on often-hidden data: failed efforts to confirm other groups' published papers. Amgen is seeding the publication with reports on its own futile attempts to replicate three studies in obesity and neurodegenerative disease and hopes other companies will follow suit. The contradictory results—along with successful confirmations—will be published by F1000Research, an open-access, online-only publisher. Its new Preclinical Reproducibility and Robustness channel, launched on 4 February, will allow both companies and academic scientists to share their replications so that others will be less likely to waste time following up on flawed findings.