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"Delete Peaks": Tohru Fukuyama’s Correction Crisis | C&EN Print E-mail

This article was recently published in C&EN, and it describes how some of the students in the lab "fixed" their NMR spectral data so that it no longer included some relatively large solvent peaks. The students were using JEOL software to do this, but Bruker and MNova software can also help you "delete peaks". 

When processing your raw data, you should employ whatever tricks you can to make your figures as clear and convincing as possible.  There is a danger, however, of crossing the line between simple data processing techniques and actually doctoring the data.   This recent article in the C&EN highlights the dangers of making a "pretty picture" versus fabricating data. It is always best practice to go back into the lab and clean up a sample so that you have the best possible data for publication.

See actual spectra: trace evidence.jpg (Credit: Adapted from Org. Lett; C&EN)

Your reputation for scientific integrity, once destroyed, takes many years to build again.

Dr. Bob Berno
Manager: McMaster NMR Facility

Chemistry & Chemical Biology
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