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Salivary Cancer GWAS Pulled

Researchers from MD Anderson Cancer Center have retracted a 2015 article that linked common genetic variants to salivary gland carcinoma risk, Retraction Watch reports.

The researchers had reported in the journal Cancer that their genome-wide association study had found SNPs in five genes that influenced disease risk. The researchers, led by MD Anderson's Erich Sturgis, had noted that their findings needed to be confirmed and undergo functional analysis.

However, in the retraction notice, the journal says the researchers later found that "the sampling had been compromised, resulting in duplicate samples involving 93 controls and 4 cases." This, it adds, affected not only the sample size and statistical power of the study, but also some of its results.

Retraction Watch's Andrew Han reports that Sturgis, the paper's senior author, had asked the journal for an erratum or, if that wasn't possible, to withdraw the paper. (Editor's note: Han is a former GenomeWeb staffer.) He adds the journal's editor-in-chief, section editor, and statistical reviewers decided upon a retraction.