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Viral Misconduct

In December, Nature reported on the Research Center Borstel in Germany, which was caught up in the revelation that several researchers in its immunology group had allegedly been involved in long-running scientific misconduct. Now, the case is assuming "ever-more alarming proportions," says Nature's Quirin Schiermeier. The center has announced that six more papers published by current and former members of the immunology group are being retracted, bringing the total number of retractions to 12 so far, Schiermeier says. Silvia Bulfone-Paus, who ran the group and is listed as a co-author on all 12 papers, is accusing two former postdocs — Vadim Budagian and Elena Bulanova — of manipulating PCR and western blots in multiple papers, but says she didn't know anything about it. The two postdocs have declined to sign at least one of the retractions, a 2005 paper published in the EMBO Journal.

The Scan

White-Tailed Deer Harbor SARS-CoV-2 Variants No Longer Infecting Humans, Study Finds

A new study in PNAS has found that white-tailed deer could act as a reservoir of SARS-CoV-2 variants no longer found among humans.

Study Points to Benefits of Local Consolidative Therapy, Targeted Treatments in Cancer Care

In JCO Precision Oncology, researchers report that local consolidative therapy combined with molecularly targeted treatments could improve survival for some lung cancer patients.

Genetic Variants That Lower LDL Cholesterol Linked to Reduced Heart Disease Risk

Rare variants in two genes that lower LDL cholesterol are also associated with a decreased risk of coronary heart disease, according to a new JAMA Cardiology study.

Study Links Evolution of Longevity, Social Organization in Mammals

With the help of comparative phylogenetics and transcriptomics, researchers in Nature Communications see ties between lifespan and social organization in mammals.