WASHINGTON -- The former dean of the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta has asked a medical journal to retract two scientific reports published in 1978 and 1980 because an investigation showed they were of 'uncertain validity.'
The reports published in Annals of Internal Medicine were written by Dr. John Darsee while he was a researcher at Emory. He later went to Harvard, where he conducted research that the National Institutes of Health earlier this year found included falsified data.
In June, another medical journal, the New England Journal of Medicine, retracted two research reports by Darsee.
James Glenn, Emory's dean of medicine when Darsee's reports were published, said in a letter published in the Aug. 3 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine that an investigation of one of the reports failed to identify the patients and data that formed a basis for it.
A similar investigation did not verify the existence of three patients that formed the basis for the second paper, said Glenn, who resigned from Emory May 20 to become president of Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York.
In both cases, Glenn and other Emory doctors said the reports should be considered 'of uncertain validity.' The letters asked that the papers be withdrawn.
In response, Darsee said in a letter also published in the Aug. 3 issue of the Annals the decision to request that the papers be withdrawn 'is not unreasonable in light of the results of the NIH investigation of my work at another institution.'
Darsee said one portion of one of the papers published in the Annals was not accurate. But he said he believed the second paper 'is entirely accurate.'
Darsee said in the letter he is sorry his co-authors were subjected 'to the recent ordeal of the review process and subsequent media exposure.
'My deepest apologies go to them, to the Annals of Internal Medicine and to the medical community.'