1st Edition

Error and Fraud
The Dark Side of Biomedical Research

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after May 28, 2021
ISBN 9780367469924
May 28, 2021 Forthcoming by CRC Press
264 Pages 17 B/W Illustrations

USD $39.95

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

This fascinating book gives readers an appreciation of how biomedical research should work and how the reality is all too often seriously flawed. Explaining the logical basis of the different research approaches used by biomedical research scientists and their relative merits, it will help readers to make more realistic appraisal of media reports linking aspects of lifestyle, environment or diet to health outcomes and thus judge whether such claims are a real effect worthy of consideration for behavior change or deserving of further research resources.

Key features:

  • increases awareness of research fraud and some of the characteristics of fraudulent science and scientific fraudsters
  • shows that whilst outright fraud may be uncommon, fudging of results to help achieve statistical significance may be more prevalent
  • incorporates real-life case studies highlighting some of the infamous cases of research fraud and major scientific mistakes and the impact that they have had
  • provides a convenient overview of the research process in the biomedical sciences, with a focus on research strategy rather than individual methods
  • find supplemental detail on the author’s blog https://drgeoffnutrition.wordpress.com/about/

By raising awareness of the possibility that research data may have been dishonestly generated and outlining some of the signs and symptoms that might suggest data fabrication, Error and Fraud: The Dark Side of Biomedical Research will help students and researchers to identify the strengths and limitations of different research approaches and allow them to make a realistic evaluations of their own and others’ research findings.

Table of Contents


Prologue- An overview of the aims, origins and structure of this book

Chapter 1 – Research strategies in the biomedical sciences

The use of statistics

The range and classification of available methods

Observational human studies

Animal and in vitro experiments

Human experimental studies


Decision making and hierarchies of evidence

Key references

Chapter 2 – Case studies of scientific errors

Case study 1 - Sleeping position and cot death

Case study 2 - The Protein Gap

Case study 3 -Defective brown fat thermogenesis as an important cause of obesity

Case study 4 - Antioxidants supplements to increase life expectancy

Key references

Chapter 3 - More general concerns about scientific credibility

Are most published research findings wrong?

An avalanche of junk papers

Why is so much published data irreproducible?

Is all published research useful?

Key references

Chapter 4 - The accused – case studies of scientists accused of research misconduct

Jatinder Ahluwalia

Werner Bezwoda

Joachim Boldt

Stephen Breuning

Michael Briggs

Sir Cyril Burt

Ranjit Kumar Chandra

Dipak Kumar Das

Charles Dawson

Yoshitaka Fujii

Viswa Jit Gupta

John William Heslop Harrison

Paul Kammerer

Gregor Mendel

Haruko Obokata

J Malcolm Pearce

Scott S Reuben

Ram Bahadur Singh

Diederik Stapel

Jon Sudbo

William Talley Summerlin

Andrew Wakefield

Minor case studies

Chapter 5 - Research fraud overview

Basic definitions

How common is research fraud?

The harm done by research fraud – why it matters

The publication process: how is the accuracy and integrity of the scientific record maintained?

Key references

Chapter 6 – Protection – barriers to the publication of fraudulent data

Author level barriers

Peer review by co-authors, referees and editors

Key references

Chapter 7 – Detection: identifying fraud after publication

Faith in the efficacy of peer review and replication

Encouraging and protecting potential whistle-blowers

Reader scrutiny

Indicators of fraudulent papers and fraudulent scientists

Key references

Chapter 8 – Disinfection and measures for minimising the impact of research fraud

Disinfection overview

One confirmed act of fraud should trigger a wider investigation

Who should investigate accusations of research fraud?

Indications that data has been fabricated

Interviews with co-authors

Life after death – continuing influence of retracted papers

What can be done to improve the situation?

Key references


View More



Dr Geoffrey P Webb (BSc MSc PHd SFHEA) is Senior Lecturer at the University of East London and one of the UK’s leading experts on Nutrition.