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May 18th, 2012

Pissed as hell, and naming names [May. 18th, 2012|10:10 pm]
Lab Rats


In 2010 I worked at Maastricht University, under Dr. An Moens. During my time there, I wrote a monster review, but we couldn't find a journal that would publish it (at 11,000+ words, I can't blame them). When I left the lab, she was still looking for a publisher. I was aware that it would probably be extensively edited, and if that was the case, I might not be first-author on it anymore. Fine. Just get it out there.

Just this week, I learned that it's just been published. And that my name is nowhere on the author list.

Incensed, I contacted the editor at the journal. He sent me a PDF, to show me that I was, in fact, acknowledged--in the acknowledgements, for my "technical expertise, editorial assistance". Editorial assistance my @$$. 85% of the text is mine, with minor edits at best. As in, huge sections of the review were copy-pasted from the original. And the parts that have been changed? "It is apparent" becomes "Apparently"--that sort of thing. There are maybe 5 original paragrpahs in the entire thing--and I'm being generous. If someone wants to check this, I can forward you my last version of the review, and you can compare it to what's online.

The editor-in-chief is a decent guy--he got back to me the same day (editors tend to do that when you subject an email with "plagarism"). I forwarded him the original 11,000 word beast, which I still had on gmail, to show him that I was not joking when I said that most of the words that are in that review are mine. I think he wants to get both sides of the story. I don't think he will, because she's good at ignoring things she doesn't like to hear.

The article, FWIW, is the J Mol Cell Cardiol. 2012 Jun;52(6):1213-25. Epub 2012 Mar 21, and is titled "Doxorubicin-induced cardiomyopathy: From molecular mechanisms to therapeutic strategies." If anybody wants to read the original in all its glory, let me know.

EDIT: I should also add that this is not a spur-of-the-moment post. I waited until she responded. And her response, basically, was, "I don't think you made any significant contributions." So this goes up. Spread the word.
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