In DepthRESEARCH INTEGRITY

Biologist blows whistle on prominent co-author

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Science  18 Jun 2021:
Vol. 372, Issue 6548, pp. 1250-1251
DOI: 10.1126/science.372.6548.1250

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Summary

On 10 May, evolutionary biologist Ken Thompson of the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, published a "technical comment" via Dropbox that reads like a frontal attack on his own first paper, published in 2014 in Biodiversity and Conservation. Thompson was the first author of the study, which pitted traditional techniques for identifying plant species against DNA barcoding. But his comment identified what he said were serious issues in data provided by his co-author and supervisor at the time, Steven Newmaster, a prominent lab leader at the University of Guelph. Thompson decided to go public with his suspicions after both the university and the journal declined to investigate them.

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