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If a Tree Falls in the Woods …

Ivan Oransky at Retraction Watch asks: "If a paper appears online but then is withdrawn ... before it is 'officially' published, did anyone hear it fall?" Because publishers' policies vary, he says, there's no clear consensus as to whether "something that is freely available online is published," which, consequently, "has ramifications for whether you can retract a paper like that." In discussing two scenarios in which papers that appeared online were withdrawn, Oranksy calls for increased transparency on the part of the publishers. "So if you end up at an abstract and all you see is 'Withdrawn' ... you might raise your eyebrows a bit and wonder what happened," he says. "It shouldn't take a call or e-mail to the journal or authors to find out." To that end, journal editors ought to make their rationales for withdrawals public, Oransky suggests.

The Scan

Alzheimer's Risk Gene Among Women

CNN reports that researchers have found that variants in MGMT contribute to Alzheimer's disease risk among women but not men.

Still Hanging Around

The Guardian writes that persistent pockets of SARS-CoV-2 in the body could contribute to long COVID.

Through a Little Spit

Enteric viruses like norovirus may also be transmitted through saliva, not just the fecal-oral route, according to New Scientist.

Nature Papers Present Method to Detect Full Transcriptome, Viruses Infecting Asgard Archaea, More

In Nature this week: VASA-seq approach to detect full transcriptome, analysis of viruses infecting Asgard archaea, and more.