ISIS – Institute of Science in Society
5th December 2013
Following the retraction of the Seralini et al scientific paper which found health damage to rats fed on GM corn, over 100 scientists have pledged in this Open Letter to boycott Elsevier, publisher of the Journal responsible.
To: Wallace Hayes, Editor in Chief, Food and Chemical Toxicology; Elsevier
Re: “Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize”, by G E Séralini et al, published in Food and Chemical Toxicology 2012, 50(11), 4221-31.
Your decision to retract the paper is in clear violation of the international ethical norms as laid down by the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), of which FCT is a member. According to COPE, the only grounds for retraction are clear evidence that the findings are unreliable due to misconduct or honest error,plagiarism or redundant publication, or unethical research.
You have already acknowledged that the paper of Séralini et al (2012) contains none of those faults.
This arbitrary, groundless retraction of a published, thoroughly peer-reviewed paper is without precedent in the history of scientific publishing, and raises grave concerns over the integrity and impartiality of science. These concerns are heightened by a sequence of events surrounding the retraction:
* the appointment of ex-Monsanto employee Richard Goodman to the newly created post of associate editor for biotechnology at FCT
* the retraction of another study finding potentially harmful effects from GMOs (which almost immediately appeared in another journal)
* the failure to retract a paper published by Monsanto scientists in the same journal in 2004, for which a gross error has been identified.
The retraction is erasing from the public record results that are potentially of very great importance for public health. It is censorship of scientific research, knowledge, and understanding, an abuse of science striking at the very heart of science and democracy, and science for the public good.
We urge you to reverse this appalling decision, and further, to issue a fulsome public apology to Séralini and his colleagues. Until you accede to our request, we will boycott Elsevier, i.e., decline to purchase Elsevier products, to publish, review, or do editorial work for Elsevier.
The background to this open letter is described in Retracting Seralini Study Violates Science & Ethics (ISIS report). and on this website at Scientific journal retracts study exposing GM cancer risk
You can sign the letter on the ISIS website. Also, please see this page for the full current signatory list.
The following message was sent out to the chescience list today:
Please remove my chapter from the upcoming edition of Policy And Politics in Nursing and Health Care. And please inform Elsevier of the reason for my actions, as described below. I would also encourage all of you to refuse to publish in or review Elsevier products until the company reverses their decision.
Charlotte Brody, RN
Vice President for Health Initiatives