19 papers of Chitra Mandal from CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Biology have duplicated images

IICB - Chitra Mandal 6-Optimized

Dr. Chitra Mandal, a SERB Distinguished Fellow at the CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Biology, Kolkata, has 19 papers listed on Pubpeer for image manipulation and/or duplication. She is the corresponding author in 17 papers. All the problematic images were double-checked by an independent expert.

All the papers of Dr. Mandal that have been listed on Pubpeer website were double checked for image problems by an independent expert who has a proven track record of identifying manipulated and duplicated images.

With 19 papers, Dr. Chitra Mandal, a SERB Distinguished Fellow at the CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Biology in Kolkata, has the most number of papers from the institution on the Pubpeer website. Dr. Mandal’s papers on Pubpeer have problems with the images — manipulation and/or duplication. Pubpeer website allows independent scientists to publish post-publication review of scientific papers.

While manipulation of images was noticed, there is no duplication of images between papers. Besides the 19 papers, there are four more papers that have been listed on Pubpeer wherein the images can be called as a probably suspicious. More scrutiny is needed before one can confirm the true status of these four papers. One paper published in 2009 has been retracted.  IICB - Chitra Mandal 5-OptimizedExcept in two, she is the corresponding author in the remaining 17 papers. She is also the corresponding author in the retracted paper.

All the papers of Dr. Mandal that have been listed on Pubpeer website were double checked for image problems by an independent expert who has a proven track record of identifying manipulated and duplicated images.

Not aware of this website

“I have not seen this website nor do I know anything about it,” Dr. Mandal tells me over telephone. After mentioning Pubpeer website, I guided her to trace her papers listed there and find other details.

However, according to FAQ posted on the Pubpeer website on whether authors receive alerts when someone comments on their paper, it says: “Yes. Authors are automatically alerted when their paper is commented.” And for another questions it adds: “We make every effort to alert the authors to any comments and they are encouraged to respond.”

It must be noted that for one of Dr. Mandal’s papers listed on Pubpper, the first author has responded several times.

“For papers published in the last four-five years, I have the original data. So I can send the original data to anyone who has a query. But in the case of very old papers it will be difficult. I have data for old papers too but it will take a long time to retrieve them,” Dr. Mandal says.

IICB - Chitra Mandal 4

Area of work and recognition

Dr. Mandal has about 80 select publications in the area of cancer and sialoglycobiology of visceral leishmaniasis (VL) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa according to her bio posted on the institution website.

As per her Curriculum Vitae, she was an Acting Director CSIR-IICB in 2014-15. She had received the Sir J.C. Bose Fellowship by the Department of Science and Technology (DST). She has been elected fellow of The Indian National Science Academy (New Delhi), Indian Academy of Sciences (Bangalore), The National Academy of Sciences (Allahabad), National Academy of Medical Sciences and West Bengal Academy of Science and Technology.

Problematic papers listed on Pubpeer website

1) Mahanine synergistically enhances cytotoxicity of 5-fluorouracil through ROS-mediated activation of PTEN and p53/p73 in colon carcinoma

Ranjita Das, Kaushik Bhattacharya, Sayantani Sarkar, Suman Kumar Samanta, Bikas C. Pal, Chitra Mandal

Apoptosis (2014)

2) Sialoglycosylation of RBC in visceral leishmaniasis leads to enhanced oxidative stress, calpain-induced fragmentation of spectrin and hemolysis

Sajal Samanta, Angana Ghoshal, Kaushik Bhattacharya, Bibhuti Saha, Peter Walden, Chitra Mandal

PLoS ONE (2012)

3) Sialylation of outer membrane porin protein D: a mechanistic basis of antibiotic uptake in Pseudomonas aeruginosa

Biswajit Khatua, Jeremy Van Vleet, Biswa Pronab Choudhury, Rama Chaudhry, Chitra Mandal

Molecular & Cellular Proteomics (2014)

4) Sialic acids acquired by Pseudomonas aeruginosa are involved in reduced complement deposition and siglec mediated host-cell recognition

Biswajit Khatua, Angana Ghoshal, Kaushik Bhattacharya, Chitra Mandal, Bibhuti Saha, Paul R. Crocker, Chitra Mandal

FEBS Letters (2010)

5) Down regulation of membrane-bound Neu3 constitutes a new potential marker for childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia and induces apoptosis suppression of neoplastic cells

Chitra Mandal, Cristina Tringali, Susmita Mondal, Luigi Anastasia, Sarmila Chandra, Bruno Venerando, Chitra Mandal

International Journal of Cancer (2010)

6) Identification and characterization of adsorbed serum sialoglycans on Leishmania donovani promastigotes

Mitali Chatterjee, Anil Kumar Chava, Guido Kohla, Santanu Pal, Anette Merling, Stephan Hinderlich, Ulrike Unger, Peter Strasser, Gerrit J Gerwig, Johannis P Kamerling, Reinhard Vlasak, Paul R Crocker, Roland Schauer, Reinhard Schwartz-Albiez, Chitra Mandal

Glycobiology (2003)

7) Flow-cytometric monitoring of disease-associated expression of 9-O-acetylated sialoglycoproteins in combination with known CD antigens, as an index for MRD in children with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia: a two-year longitudinal follow-up study

Suchandra Chowdhury, Suman Bandyopadhyay, Chitra Mandal, Sarmila Chandra, Chitra Mandal

BMC Cancer (2008)

8) Identification of sialic acids on Leishmania donovani amastigotes

Anil K Chava, Mitali Chatterjee, Gerrit J Gerwig, Johannis P Kamerling, Chitra Mandal

Biological Chemistry (2004)

9) Sialic acids in different Leishmania sp., its correlation with nitric oxide resistance and host responses

Angana Ghoshal, Gerrit J Gerwig, Johannis P Kamerling, Chitra Mandal

Glycobiology (2010)

10) 9-O-acetylated sialic acids differentiating normal haematopoietic precursors from leukemic stem cells with high aldehyde dehydrogenase activity in children with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia

Suchandra Chowdhury, Sarmila Chandra, Chitra Mandal

Glycoconjugate Journal (2014)

11) Elevated mRNA level of hST6Gal I and hST3Gal V positively correlates with the high risk of pediatric acute leukemia

Susmita Mondal, Sarmila Chandra, Chitra Mandal

Leukemia Research (2010)

12) Withanolide D induces apoptosis in leukemia by targeting the activation of neutral sphingomyelinase-ceramide cascade mediated by synergistic activation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase

Susmita Mondal, Chandan Mandal, Rajender Sangwan, Sarmila Chandra, Chitra Mandal

Molecular Cancer (2010)

13) 9-O-acetylated sialoglycoproteins are important immunomodulators in Indian visceral leishmaniasis

Angana Ghoshal, Sumi Mukhopadhyay, Bibhuti Saha, Chitra Mandal

Clinical and Vaccine Immunology (2009)

14) Deprivation of L-Arginine Induces Oxidative Stress Mediated Apoptosis in Leishmania donovani Promastigotes: Contribution of the Polyamine Pathway

Abhishek Mandal, Sushmita Das, Saptarshi Roy, Ayan Kumar Ghosh, Abul Hasan Sardar, Sudha Verma, Savita Saini, Ruby Singh, Kumar Abhishek, Ajay Kumar, Chitra Mandal, Pradeep Das

PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases (2016)

15) A sphingolipid rich lipid fraction isolated from attenuated Leishmania donovani promastigote induces apoptosis in mouse and human melanoma cells in vitro

Jagnyeswar Ratha, Kajal Nayan Majumdar, Sushil Kumar Mandal, Rabindranath Bera, Chinmoy Sarkar, Bidisha Saha, Chitra Mandal, Krishna Das Saha, Ranjan Bhadra

Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry (2006)

16) Purification and characterization of 9-O-acetylated sialoglycoproteins from leukemic cells and their potential as immunological tool for monitoring childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia

Santanu Pal, Shyamasree Ghosh, Chitra Mandal, Guido Kohla, Reinhard Brossmer, Rainer Isecke, Anette Merling, Roland Schauer, Reinhard Schwartz-Albiez, Dilip K Bhattacharya, Chitra Mandal

Glycobiology (2004)

17) Bak compensated for Bax in p53-null cells to release cytochrome c for the initiation of mitochondrial signaling during Withanolide D-induced apoptosis

Susmita Mondal, Kaushik Bhattacharya, Asish Mallick, Rajender Sangwan, Chitra Mandal

PLoS ONE (2012)

18) Apoptotic effects of mahanine on human leukemic cells are mediated through crosstalk between Apo-1/Fas signaling and the Bid protein and via mitochondrial pathways

Kaushik Bhattacharya, Suman K. Samanta, Rakshamani Tripathi, Asish Mallick, Sarmila Chandra, Bikas C. Pal, Chandrima Shaha, Chitra Mandal

Biochemical Pharmacology (2010)

19) Induction of glycosylation in human C-reactive protein under different pathological conditions

Tanusree Das, Asish K Sen, Tore Kempf, Sumit R. Pramanik, Chitra Mandal, Chitra Mandal

Biochemical Journal (2003)

Probably problematic papers that need more scrutiny

1) Interferon gamma promotes survival of lymphoblasts overexpressing 9-O-acetylated sialoglycoconjugates in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL)

Shyamasree Ghosh, Suman Bandyopadhyay, Asish Mallick, Santanu Pal, Reinhard Vlasak, Dilip K. Bhattacharya, Chitra Mandal

Journal of Cellular Biochemistry (2005)

2) Role of C-reactive protein in complement-mediated hemolysis in Malaria

Waliza Ansar, Sumi Mukhopadhyay Nee Bandyopadhyay, Suchandra Chowdhury, Sk Hasan Habib, Chitra Mandal

Glycoconjugate Journal (2006)

3) Increased interferon gamma production by peripheral blood mononuclear cells in response to stimulation of overexpressed disease-specific 9-O-acetylated sialoglycoconjugates in children suffering from acute lymphoblastic leukaemia

Shyamasree Ghosh, Suman Bandyopadhyay, Santanu Pal, Benubrata Das, Dilip K. Bhattacharya, Chitra Mandal

British Journal of Haematology (2005)

4) Glycosylation of erythrocyte spectrin and its modification in visceral leishmaniasis

Sajal Samanta, Devawati Dutta, Angana Ghoshal, Sumi Mukhopadhyay, Bibhuti Saha, Shyam Sundar, Saulius Jarmalavicius, Michael Forgber, Chitra Mandal, Peter Walden, Chitra Mandal

PLoS ONE (2011)

6 Thoughts

  1. The DG-CSIR should take the responsibility to stop/punish these unethical practices (if at all happened) and should motivate the young scientist for ethical research. This may be achieved through compulsory training for the scientists/PhD research fellows/faculty members through lecture/workshop/seminar/Exam/etc. We , the senior teachers are ready to help our future generation scientists for an honest research output In India.

  2. ……the condition may be very worst in Universities…..its a Indian research culture……..publishing paper is only mean for career progress….

  3. Copying is natural; life proliferates by copying. Then what is wrong if 17 (or 170 for that matter) images are copied ?

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