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paper mills in china, paper manufacturers in china

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chinas paper mills are grinding out fake scientific research at an alarming rate - coda story

chinas paper mills are grinding out fake scientific research at an alarming rate - coda story

In May, Chengyi Zhang, a masters student at a prestigious medical school in China, published his first article in a Chinese scientific journal. Then, the calls and WeChat messages began. Suddenly, he was inundated with sales pitches from services offering to produce academic papers under his name, on any subject he wanted.

The messages promised that, for a price of 62,000 yuan ($9,000), the articles could be written and published in low-ranking international medical journals. The callers he spoke to claimed to be employed by peer-reviewed publications, including the Chinese Journal of General Medicine and the Chinese Journal of Hospital Pharmacy.

But Zhang, whose name has been changed to protect him from professional repercussions, believes that the sales staff were really part of a bigger and murkier system. They are paper mills, he said in an email, referring to a growing industry dedicated to the production and sale of junk science.

Chinas highly competitive medical sector and the nations rush to become the world leader in scientific research is creating a growing demand for such services. Certainly, they have proved popular with hard-pressed doctors and scientists keen to secure financial rewards and advance their careers. What is more, experts believe that the industry has grave implications for the credibility of all scientific inquiry emerging from the country.

In 2018, China overtook the US as the worlds most prolific scientific researcher, publishing an average of 305,000 papers a year. But, beneath the impressive statistics, fears abound that a growing number of them are fake.Absolutely a masterpiece of art! read an October Twitter post by Tiger, a biomedical research scientist from China who now lives in the U.S. and spends much of their time anonymously tracking fake papers. The picture they posted came from a Chinese study, published in an international peer-reviewed journal, that examined the development of liver fibrosis into cancer. At first glance, it looks like a normal image of cell formations, but upon closer examination, its clear: each cell in the picture is identical, and has been digitally duplicated, copied and pasted in.

Tiger regularly posts about false papers on Twitter and the Chinese microblogging platform Weibo. They have been on the receiving end of trolling and hate campaigns, as well as pleas from working doctors to stop exposing fake papers.

Tiger forms part of an informal team of international volunteers, anonymously battling scientific fraud. In the past year, they and their colleagues have uncovered hundreds of bogus studies. The groups members believe that Chinese paper mills could be churning out thousands more every year.

According to a report highlighted by MIT Technology Review, Chinese universities rewarded authors with an average of $44,000 in 2016 for research published in the prominent scientific journals Science and Nature. Meanwhile, a sliding scale of financial incentives is applied to work featured in smaller publications.

Elisabeth Bik the only member of the team willing to give her real name is a microbiologist from the Netherlands, based in California. She began tracking the phenomenon of paper mills at the beginning of 2020.

Along with Tiger, a senior research scientist who goes by the name of Morty, and a mathematical psychologist called Smut Clyde, Bik has spent many unpaid hours searching for anomalies in Chinese research. Early this year, the group discovered one paper mill, which they believe was responsible for more than 500 fake studies examining human gene function and cancer. They all used similar formulaic titles, graphs and images but were supposedly written by doctors and scientists from all over China. In July, Bik discovered another cache of 121 papers they believe to be from another paper mill. Nicknamed them the stock photo papers, as they all shared at least one image with each other.

It probably feeds into the narrative that, Oh, all science is junk, therefore we should abandon science altogether, he said during a Zoom call. But, he said, its better to find and remove the junk science than to pretend it doesnt exist.

The sale of ghostwritten scientific papers is not restricted to the mills. Speaking on condition of anonymity, one U.S.-based physician recalled a difficult encounter with a student while teaching during his PhD in China.

Zhang also considers that, should the working conditions of junior doctors in China not improve, there will continue to be a demand for these services. Faced with low salaries, poor benefits and a lack of social status, he recognizes that the temptation to resort to academic misconduct to gain much-needed promotions is great.

As one of these doctors, I kindly ask you to please leave us alone as soon as possible, it read. Countless junior doctors, including those younger than me, look down upon the act of faking papers. But the system in China is just like that, you cant really fight against it. Without papers, you dont get a promotion. Without a promotion, you can hardly feed your family. I want to have the time to do scientific research, but its impossible.

The story you just read is a small piece of a complex and an ever-changing storyline we are following as part of our coverage. These overarching storylines whether the disinformation campaigns that are feeding the war on truth or the new technologies strengthening the growing authoritarianism, are the crises that Coda covers relentlessly and with singular focus. But we cant do it without your help. Support journalism that stays on the story. Coda Story is a 501(c)3 U.S. non-profit. Your contribution to Coda Story is tax deductible.

news - china pulp paper

news - china pulp paper

ANDRITZ has received an order fromJiangxi Five Star Paper, Chinato deliver four PrimeCoat Jet coaters for online coating for their mill in Hukou county (Jiujiang city), Jiangxi province. Start-up is scheduled for 2021.

The four coaters for the white cardboard and folding boxboard production line have a design speed of 1,000 m/min and a maximum web-width of 5,660 mm. They feature a jet nozzle to apply the coating color to the paper web.

Buckman, a privately-held global company specializing in innovative chemistry and smart solutions, announced global price increases of 5 to 20% for all product offerings. The price increases will become effective immediately, or as customer contracts allow.

By exchanging innovations and further developing optimized steam sootblowing- and steam turbine control solutions, the companies intend to drive the transition to more sustainable, reliable, and affordable energy systems on a global scale.

Paper waste exporters worldwide now have to shift their supply chains: China, a global key processor of imported waste, banned solid waste imports in 2021. Countries with insufficient domestic paper processing capacity will now be forced to develop these facilities, against the current global trend towards the circular economy.

Toscotec has launched the new generation design of its shoe pressTT NextPress, featuring superior drying performances and energy savings, resulting from R&D activities in cooperation with Voith. TT NextPress delivers a stable after-press dryness rate of more than 47% on a tissue line operating above 2,000 mpm speed. This dryness level ensures a substantial reduction of energy consumption, as the Yankee and the hoods use significantly less thermal energy to complete the paper drying process.

ANDRITZ has received an order fromNine Dragons Paper Industriesto supply two chemi-thermomechanical pulping systems for their mills in China. The start-ups are scheduled for spring and summer 2022. ANDRITZ will install its well-proven P-RC APMP (pre-conditioning refiner chemical alkaline peroxide mechanical pulp) technology to ensure optimum pulp quality at lowest energy consumption and highest availability. The fiberlines will have a capacity of 1,000 admt/d and 670 admt/d, respectively, and will process a mixture of eucalyptus, acacia and poplar wood chips for the production of folding boxboard (FBB).

Valmet IntelliTissue machines belong to the small and medium size tissue machines that were integrated to Valmet's offering when the company acquired PMP from Poland in 2020. This order will be Valmet's twelfth IntelliTissue tissue making line delivery to C&S.

Ahlstrom-Munksjhas completed an investment in one of its filtration material production lines in Binzhou, China. The machine rebuild adds production capacity and new capabilities that will further enhance the product portfolio. The production line will be able to deliver the highest performing oil, fuel, air and industrial filtration materials, which will strengthen Ahlstrom-Munksjs offering and service for the Asian customers.

Valmet will supply two Valmet Advantage DCT tissue lines, including automation system and three tissue rewinders, to Zhejiang Jingxing Paper Joint Stock Co., Ltd. in China. The new line will support the company's increasing demand for high-quality tissue products in the domestic and international markets. The start-ups are planned for the first half of 2022.

ANDRITZ has received an order fromLee & Man Paperto supply two semi-chemical fiberlines for its mills in Dongguan, Guangdong Province, and Jiujiang, Jiangxi Province, China. Start-up of both lines is scheduled for the end of 2022.

Kadant Fiberline (China) Co. Ltd., a subsidiary of Kadant Inc., announced it successfully started up two OCC systems at Sun Paper's PM1 and PM2 in Muang Phin, Laos. The OCC systems each have a capacity of 400,000 tons per year.

The recycled containerboard machines have a design speed of 1200 mpm and a trim width of 6.6 m. PM 1 produces containerboard grades in basis weights of 140-250 gsm while PM 2 produces packaging paper grades in basis weights of 100-150 gsm.

Huhtamaki has entered into an agreement to acquire the assets of Jiangsu Hihio-Art Packaging Co. Ltd., a leading manufacturer of paper bags, wraps and folding carton packaging in China. The company currently serves international quick-service restaurants (QSR) as well as national bakery chains.

Market pulp is a critical global commodity within the pulp and paper industry. As such, market pulp is a constant fixture in global trade flows because of its primary role in manufacturing numerous paper grades.

Market pulp prices have always been volatile and kraft market pulp, in particular, saw some of its lowest prices in the last 10 years in 2020. However, 2021 has brought price increases with skyrocketing spot prices in February and early March. Between December 1, 2020 and late February 2021, bleached softwood kraft futures were up 48% on the Shanghai Futures Exchange (SHFI), and additional price increases have been announced, leaving buyers wondering what has happened and when it will end.

ANDRITZhas successfully started up a new 500 t/d HERB chemical recovery boiler atKuantum Papers Limitedin Saila Khurd, Hoshiapur district in the state of Punjab, India. The boiler is designed to handle a mixture of hardwood and agro-based black liquor and enables environmentally friendly and more energy-efficient operation compared to a conventional boiler with direct contact evaporator. Thus, the mills pulp production as well as the power-to-heat-ratio are substantially increased. The boiler also features a unique vertical air system to minimize air emissions.

The InlineSENS combines both a radiation source and scintillation detector in one device. Its use of low-energy gamma radiation from an Am-241 or Cm-244 source provides for strong responses to even the slightest change in product composition, with extremely low dose rates.

The isotope Am-241 or Cm-244 is used as the radiation source. The advantage: Am-241 and Cm-244 have very low radiation energies, which correspond approximately to the energy of X-rays. The density measuring system InlineSENS offers high statistical accuracy and long-term stability by using a highly sensitive scintillation detector with patented drift compensation.

Recently,Huanlong Groupofficially launched the expansion project with an annual output of 50,000 tons of high-end tissue paper. The complete production line equipment of this turnkey project is provided by Baosuo Enterprise Group, including stock preparation system, white water treatment system, 2 sets of BC1600-2850 BaotuoCrescentFormerTissueMachine and other complete set ofconvertingequipment, etc.

March has been another month with no signs at all of an imminent reversal in fortunes on Europe's pulp market. Demand continues to be outstripping supply. The situation for hardwood and softwood pulp is equally strained, insiders said. If producers get their way, prices will climb again in Europe and move into line with those charged in China.

The first announcements of additional hikes in the second quarter have been on the table since the middle of March. Insiders noted that most pulp buyers are still leading a hand-to-mouth existence so they have no choice but to accept these demands.

Valmet has received several pulp technology orders from Nine Dragons to its pulp mills in China. The deliveries include fiberlines and core components for recovery boilers and lime kilns. The deliveries will be done in phases and the start-ups are scheduled for 2022 and 2023.

Valmet will supply a folding boxboard making line (BM 1), a fine paper making line (PM 3) and a bleached chemi thermo mechanical pulp (BCTMP) production line to Liansheng Pulp & Paper (Zhangzhou) in Zhangzhou, Fujian province, China.

The roll-out of paper straws at numerous bubble tea shops across China to replace the traditional plastic alternative is down to Beijings new policy initiative to reduce environmental pollution by cutting down on the use of plastic products.

Andritz has received an order from Guangxi Chongzuo Lelin Forestry Development Co. Ltd. to supply a chip washing system and pressurized refining system for its production line near Chongzuo in Guangxi province, China.

The prospects for the fast-growing tissue paper market in China are very positive. Mets Fibres partners, Luck Tissue, C&S Paper and Jinboshi, are all very positive about the development of the market and the partnership.

The unexpected outbreak of COVID-19, has had negative impacts on various industries, including the paper industry in China. When the economy slowed down, the tourism industry and the food and beverage sector took a hit. As a result, the demand for napkins paper towels which are used in the outdoor environment by the consumers also plummeted.

In close cooperation with its customerJiangsu Bohui Paper Industry, international technology groupANDRITZrecently achieved a milestone in high-consistency (HC) refining by processing a peak capacity of 1,300 admt/d of local hardwood chips per day and achieving sustainable production of 1,150 admt/d at the mill in Dafeng, China.

ANDRITZ supplied two separate fiberlines with capacities of 1,500 admt/d and 750 admt/d, respectively, featuring the well-proven P-RC APMP (Pre-Conditioning Refiner Chemical Alkaline Peroxide Mechanical Pulp) technology for the new chemi-thermo-mechanical pulping system. With a total capacity of 2,250 admt/d, this system is the largest worldwide.

Kingdecor (Zhejiang) Co., a joint venture established by Schattdecor AG from Germany and Zhejiang Xianhe Special Paper Co., Ltd from China. The company produces a large array of high quality and environmentally friendly paper types, with a production capability of more than 180,000 tons and more than 200 series of products exported to Asia, North America and Australia. In the last ten years the company, by implementing advanced machineries and management methods, increased its capability by 50% per year and nowadays it can count on a registered capital of 32.6 million US dollars.

Over the course of this year the Tissue market evolved significantly: the uncertainty of the cost of pulp, the high competitiveness of the market, and the upheavals created by the current pandemic opened up new challenges. The Krber Business Area Tissue has been able to meet the most demanding customer requirements in terms of speed, choice and technologically advanced solutions.

In the 3Q/20, the Global Hardwood Fiber Price Index (HFPI) was up by 1.6% to $81.17/odmt, following a 16-year low in the previous quarter. The first q-o-q (quarter-over-quarter) increase in almost two years was mainly driven by a weakening of the US dollar against currencies in all WRQ (Wood Resources Quarterly) countries except Russia. Currencies in Europe and Oceania strengthened between 5-10% from the 2Q/20 to the 3Q/20.

The Chinese business is interested in the establishment of large-scale pulp and paper productions in Russia, particularly within the territory of the countrys Far East region, according to recent statements, made by representatives of Chinese investors and some local media reports.

Tissue manufacturers kicked off the first wave of price hikes on Dec. 7, China Central Television News reported yesterday, without saying how much they rose. Producers in the provinces of Shaanxi, Hebei, Shanxi, Jiangxi and Zhejiang followed suit within 10 days, lifting prices by CNY200 (USD30.64) a ton.

High level of harmful emissions continues to be one of the major problems of the Chinese timber processing complex, despite the efforts, which have been taken by the government to solve the problem in recent years, according to recent statements of some Chinese media and local analysts in the field of paper business.

china's top 9 paper mill manufacturer - shanghai custom packaging co., ltd

china's top 9 paper mill manufacturer - shanghai custom packaging co., ltd

Shanghai Custom Packaging Co., Ltd is a custom paper packaging manufacturer primary in custom printed paper boxes, custom rigid gift boxes, custom corrugated shipping boxes, and custom paper bags. But thanks to our raw material suppliers support, they supply paper mill to us, and we made them to corrugated cardboard or other chipboard and duplex board, finally to boxes and paper packaging. Today we listed them out and made a ranking based on their sales, innovations, factory-scale, and other abilities.

As one of the worlds largest pulp and paper companies, Asia Pulp and Paper Group (APP) is responsible for delivering quality products to meet the growing global demand for tissue, packaging and paper. On any given day, our products find their way into the hands of consumers in various branded forms from all over the world. Started in 1972 with Tjiwi Kimia producing caustic soda, now we run operations across Indonesia and China with an annual combined pulp, paper, packaging product and converting capacity of over 19 million tons per annum. Today, APP markets its products in more than 120 countries across six continents. Over the years, we have expanded our operations significantly through the acquisition and expansion of several of our pulp and paper mills. Its our commitment to customer satisfaction that enables us to grow our share in paper sales worldwide and broaden our presence through offices in many countries. We believe tradition and modernity go hand in hand- which means we value long-term relationships as part of our Eastern traditions, while we also are eager to embrace the modern values of innovation and efficiency.

UPM leads the integration of bio and forest industries into a new, sustainable and innovation-driven future. Our company consists of six business areas: UPM Biorefining, UPM Energy, UPM Raflatac, UPM Specialty Papers, UPM Paper ENA (Europe & North America) and UPM Plywood. Our products are made of responsibly sourced, renewable raw materials. They offer alternatives to replace non-renewable fossil-based materials. We develop new innovative and sustainable businesses. Biofuels, biocomposites and biochemicals are based on our extensive know-how and strong position in the forest biomass sourcing and processing value chain. We live by our values trust and be trusted, achieve together, renew with courage.

Founded in 1995, Nine Dragons Paper Group is the worlds largest in environmentally friendly recovered paper based paper manufacturing in terms of production capacity. Nine Dragons Paper (Holdings) Limited (ND Paper or the Company) (Stock Code: 2689) was successfully listed on the Main Board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on 3 March 2006. The Company and its subsidiaries (the Group) primarily produce liner board, high performance corrugating medium, and coated duplex board. Its operations enable it to serve as a one-stop-shop for a broad range of high-quality packaging paperboard products. The Groups paper machines in China are located across several manufacturing hubs, including Dongguan, Guangdong Province in the Pearl River Delta, Taicang, Jiangsu Province in the Yangtze River Delta region, Chongqing, regional hub for the Central-Western Provinces, Tianjin, at the center of the Bohai Economic Rim and Quanzhou, Fujian Province on the west coast of the Taiwan Strait and Shenyang for the North-eastern markets. The Group has also acquired 78.13% controlling equity interest in Hebei Yongxin Paper Co., Ltd. (Hebei Yongxin). In addition to packaging paperboard, the Group is also engaged in the production of printing and writing a paper in Dongguan and Taicang and the development of packaging paperboard and high-value specialty paper production in Leshan, Sichuan Province.

Chenming Group is a Chinese papermaking industry-leading enterprise. Company since founded in 1958, after more than half a century of innovation and entrepreneurship, the development has become of paper, finance, yarn, forestry, real estate sector and the five major industries as the main body, also set foot in the field of mineral, energy, logistics, building materials, hotels, and other largescale comprehensive modern enterprise group, is the only A, B, Hof listed companies, and the paper industry the first to have financial companies and Finance Leasing Company CBIF Enterprises. Group in Shandong, Guangdong, Hubei, Jiangxi, Jilin were built production base, more than 80 billion yuan of the total assets of the enterprise, annual pulp, and paper capacity of 8.5 million tons, main indicators of economic benefit for 20 consecutive years in the same industry maintain leading position, comprehensive strength ranked one of the world paper ten strong, Chinese enterprises 500 No. 234, Chinese listed company revenue hundred light manufacturing industries list first, and Chinas most competitive 50 blue-chip companies. Chenming now has the worlds largest pulp and paper production base and dozens of the international advanced level of pulp and paper production line, The product gradually formed in the printing paper, packaging paper, office paper, industrial paper, paper five-category system,To high-grade cultural paper, coated paper, white cardboard, newsprint, light coated paper, copy paper, industrial paper, specialty paper, life paper ,nine series of products structure. Enterprises have countries level technology center, postdoctoral scientific research workstation and national certified CNAs pulp and paper testing center and other research institutions, authorized access to national patent more than 150 items, including 9 invention patents, 7 products have been rated as national new product, 29 products fill the domestic blank, won 21 at or above the provincial level science and technology progress award, commitment to national science and technology projects for the five, provincial technology innovation project 26. Chenming trademark was identified as well-known trademarks in China, in the same industry-first passed ISO9001 quality system certification, ISO14001 environmental management system certification and -COC system certification (license Code: FSCC020261), the enterprise also has won the national labor awards, the Chinese enterprise management outstanding contribution award, the construction of spiritual civilization advanced units of national and provincial honorary title more than 200 items.

Founded in 1982, Shandong Sun Holdings Group is a leading cross-national papermaking group integrating forestry, pulp and papermaking. Located in Yanzhou District, Jining of Shandong Province, the Group engages in such business areas as investment, papermaking and hotel and has the following subsidiaries: Shandong Sun Paper Industry Joint Stock (stock code: 002078), International Paper & Sun Cartonboard, Shandong International Paper Sun Paperboard.

Established in 1994, Lee & Man Paper Manufacturing Ltd (Lee & Man Paper) has grown from a small company into a world-leading paper and pulp manufacturer. On 26 September 2003, the Group was listed on the Main Board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (Stock code: 02314). The Group manufactures liner-board of various grades and corrugating medium of different specifications used for different industrial packaging purposes. Over the years, in addition to boosting production scale, the Group has been relentless in pushing to form a vertically integrated operation that covers pulp making and recovered paper collection to assure it has stable raw material supply. At present, the Group has five plants in China strategically located in Dongguan Huangyong, Guangdong Hongmei, Jiangsu Changshu, Chongqing Yongchuan, and Jiangxi Jiujiang. It will also have production facilities in Vietnam. Dedicated to offering the best quality products at reasonable prices, the Group sees the need to continuously invest in machinery and R&D. The Group can produce up to 6.05 million tons of paper and 180,000 tons of pulp in 2012 and expects production capacity for the paper to increase to 7.05 million tons in 2014. In addition to building an effective and viable business, Lee & Man Paper also sees that it has a responsibility towards the society, particularly in protecting the environment. Thus, it has continually invested in implementing appropriate measures, and these efforts have not gone unnoticed. Its plants have received much international quality and environmental management certifications.

Anhui Shanying Paper Industry Co., Ltd. is one of the large industrial papermaking enterprises and extra-large packaging board manufacturers in China. In 2001, the Company was successfully listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange (stock abbreviation: Shanying Paper Industry; stock code:600567). In 2013, the Company was restructured with Jian Group Co., Ltd., realizing great-leap-forward development through powerful combination. After restructuring, the Companys main business enjoys sound development. It has successively established subsidiaries in Anhui Province, Zhejiang Province, Jiangsu Province, Fujian Province, Hubei Province, Tianjin, etc.; set up wholly-owned companies in the USA, UK, Germany, Netherlands, Japan, Australia, Hong Kong, etc.; built the domestic and foreign regenerated fiber recycling network, water transport terminals, private power station, industrial wastewater treatment facilities and other supporting systems; and boasted an annual yield of 3,050,000t paper and 1 billion m2 cardboard and paper carton, ranking top within the industry in terms of scale. In the future, the Company will continue to give full play to its superiorities in conglomerate, follow the market-oriented policies, survive on quality based on innovation by means of effective management in pursuit of the maximum benefits, strive to build a modern, environment-friendly, sustainable and internationally competitive papermaking & packaging enterprise, and make an effort to implement the vision of Leading recycling economy, Promoting paper culture.

Shandong Bohui paper group co., Ltd was found in 1944, has a large-scale enterprise consisted of paper research and development, production sale, with a total asset of RMB 0.504576 billion and 5000 employees. Leading products are Folding boxboard, Printing and writing paper, Testliner board, Gypsum board, Kraftliner board, production, and sale of pulp. By December 2009, the company has owned total assets of 58 billion yuan and achieved sales earning of 31 billion yuan, and the overall economic efficiency ranked the fifth in the same industry of China. The company has set up distributing offices in 30 provinces, cities, municipalities all over the country, and sold products to Europe, America, Middle East, Australia, and Southeast Asia, etc.

If you need some suggestions on the route of paper materials or even custom cardboard boxes, please feel free to sign the contact form, and SCP will get back to you shortly. Generally, you will get an answer within 1 hour, or even faster.

chinas research-misconduct rules target paper mills that churn out fake studies

chinas research-misconduct rules target paper mills that churn out fake studies

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Chinas science ministry is set to introduce its most comprehensive rules so far for dealing with research misconduct. The measures, which come into effect next month, outline what constitute violations and appropriate punishments. They will apply to anyone engaged in science-and-technology activities, including researchers, reviewers and heads of institutions.

The policy also includes, for the first time, violations by independent contractors, such as those who sell academic papers, fabricate data and write or submit articles on behalf of researchers. The rule is designed to tackle researchers widespread use of companies known as paper mills, which produce manuscripts that are often based on falsified data.

Some scientists say the regulations will help to curb bad behaviour and improve research integrity in Chinese institutions. They are a big step forward, says Li Tang, who studies science policy at Fudan University in Shanghai.

To have a real impact, the Chinese government needs to make an example of a high-profile case, says Xiaotian Chen, a librarian at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. There should be consequences for authors with research misconducts, especially those in powerful and important positions.

China has had a long-standing issue with research misconduct, which has drawn global attention. Cases have involved bribery, plagiarism, falsified data and forged peer review, and have led to a large number of article retractions.

Numerous policies were introduced as long ago as 2006 to address the problems, but scientists say that non-enforcement has only aggravated the situation. The current situation is worse than a decade ago, says Fang. Misconduct has become systematic and commercialized. Now there are many paper-writing companies helping researchers write and publish fake papers.

In 2017, Chinas Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) committed to cracking down on research misconduct in the wake of a major scandal. This involved the retraction of 107 research papers in the cancer journal Tumor Biology, previously published by Springer Nature. The articles were retracted because their reviews had been fabricated, and many papers had been produced by paper mills. (Nature is published by Springer Nature, and Natures news team is editorially independent of the publisher.)

The latest rules are a result of the ministrys promise, says Fang. According to the measures, research misconduct includes falsifying results, plagiarism, running experiments without ethics approval, meddling in the peer-review process and embezzling research funds. Researchers whose actions cause severe harm or financial losses will be given harsher punishments.

Penalties can range from warnings to revoking bonuses, awards and honorary titles, and even banning researchers from applying for government funding, temporarily or permanently. Researchers who report their own violations or admit to mistakes and attempt to correct them will be given lighter punishments. But repeat offenders and those who cover up misconduct or intimidate whistle-blowers will be dealt with severely.

The policy also gives institutions or people under investigation the right of appeal, including through the courts, which is important for due process, says Wang Fei, a science-policy researcher at Dalian University of Technology who has written about research integrity.

Li says the rules will encourage researchers to cooperate in investigations, and institutions to dig deeper into potential misconduct, she says. But for the measures to successfully curb bad behaviour, the government will need to hold those who violate the rules to account, says Li. What happens next is crucial.

It has become the culture that fake data, photoshopped images and fake peer reviews are OK, and that outsourcing research and writing to paper mills is OK, says Chen. In February, for example, a group of researchers identified more than 450 papers with problematic images by authors affiliated with Chinese hospitals, which the researchers say probably came from a paper mill.

Chen says that some paper mills continue to advertise their services openly, despite several government agencies publishing rules in 2015 that prohibit researchers from using these firms to write and submit their manuscripts, revise content other than grammar, or provide false peer review. The government needs to crack down on these services, says Chen.

But Li notes that regulations have improved research integrity in China, although it is difficult to point to evidence directly linking the two. Increased reporting of research misconduct cases from China could just reflect stricter policing, and that the issue is being taken more seriously in China and abroad, she says.

the full-service paper mill and its chinese customers for better science

the full-service paper mill and its chinese customers for better science

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An investigation by Elisabeth Bik, Smut Clyde, Morty and Tiger BB8 reveals the workings of a paper mill. Its customers are Chinese doctors desperate for promotion. Apparently even journal editors are part of the scam, publishing fraudulent made-up science.

In China, clinicians are expected to publish a certain number of research papers in international journals if they want to be promoted. The easiest way is to pay a paper mill, which seem to provide a full service: an English-speaking research paper containing Photoshop-generated fake research data, in a respectable peer-reviewed journal, with your name on it. Entire journals published by Wiley or Elsevier succumb to such scams, presumably because certain corrupt editorial board members are part of it. This was uncovered in an investigation by Elisabeth Bik, as well as the pseudonymous Smut Clyde, Morty and Tiger BB8, and narrated below by Smut Clyde.

The presently almost 500 papers were traced to one specific paper mill not because of direct image reuse, but because the data showed same patterns of falsifications: same blot backgrounds, same shapes of bands, and similarly falsified flow cytometry plots.

Apparently, the Chinese paper mills even handle submissions, peer review (if there is a peer review, that is) and sign the copyright consent forms while pretending to be the listed authors. This is evidenced by the fact that in some cases only bizarre Gmail addresses are provided for alleged corresponding authors in China. Gmail access, as all Google services, were blocked by the Great Chinese Firewall in 2014, on Partys orders. It is theoretically possible to use Google via VPN, but the Party has criminalised this, so hardly anyone dares. Whoever answers the Gmail accounts like [email protected] is definitely not some doctor in China listed as papers author, but the paper mill operator.

The papers mills churning out masses of 100% fabricated, never performed science which only exists in Photoshop, are the secret of Chinese science output supremacy which we in the West so admire and strive to keep up with. Reality is: nobody cares if the published research is real, slightly falsified or entirely made-up. Fraudsters face little consequences if they are well-connected, and one can always denounce a western conspiracy. The good scientific practice lessons preached by Chinese science elites do not even apply to themselves, as the case of Xuetao Cao demonstrated.

The extra joke on top is that many of these fake paper mill emissions tout the alleged powers of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) to cure cancer and other maladies, all because the nations President Xi Jinping himself is such a big fan of TCM. The Communist Party of China is merely getting what it ordered, again and again.

Maybe we in the West also should impose such idiotic laws? In fact, also in the western university hospitals, promotions depend on the publication record. So far, US, German and other doctors got ahead by gift authorships, self-plagiarism, and where needed, with outright plagiarism and falsified data. But actually, can we really be so sure that paper mills are an Asian phenomenon only?

When the count was at 320 (now almost 500), more than half of the mill papers came from the Shandong province, almost a fifth from Jilin and one tenth from Henan. This message was sent to Tiger BB8 by such a Chinese paper mill customer:

Hello teacher, yesterday you disclosed that there were some doctors having fraudulent pictures in their papers. This has raised attention. As one of these doctors, I kindly ask you to please leave us alone as soon as possible.

Being as low as grains of dust of the world, countless junior doctors, including those younger me, look down upon the act of faking papers. But the system in China is just like that, you cant really fight against it. Without papers, you dont get promotion; without a promotion, you can hardly feed your family. I also want to have some time to do scientific research, but its impossible. During the day, I have outpatient surgeries; after work, I have to take care of my kids. I have only a little bit time to myself after 10 pm, but this is far from being enough because scientific research demands big trunks of time. The current environment in China is like that.

You expose us but there are thousands of other people doing the same. As long as the system remains the same and the rules of the game remain the same, similar acts of faking data are for sure to go on. This time you exposed us, probably costing us our job. For the sake of Chinese doctors as a whole, especially for us young doctors, please be considerate. We really have no choice, please!

But then again, not everyone buys fake papers from paper mills. What about these honest doctors who dont, do their careers not count? And if doctors cheat in research, where else will they cheat to improve their performance statistics? Will fictional TCM papers lead to real patient therapies, a predictable public health disaster?

@schneiderleonid Hi, thanks for the work youve put in. Our team are combing through all the data to identify affected articles. We want to be 100% comprehensive so cd you email the articles you uncovered to [email protected] & well crosscheck w our own findings?

One journal particularly hit by an organised paper mill scam is the Journal of Cellular Biochemistry, published by Wiley. Its editorial board features many prominent US scientists, including the infamous Carlo Croce. For many years and up until mid-January 2020, the journal was run by an academic editor, the now 77-year-old Gary Stein. He stepped down, and the new temporary Editor-in-Chief is a Wiley employee Lucie Kalvodova. But when first concerns about falsified papers emerged, Stein wrote on 14 January 2020 to a whistleblower:

In September 2019, Wiley opened a search for a new Editor-in-Chief, as referenced by this Chinese website. It makes sense: in recent journal editions, around 90% of papers have Chinese authors, as if there was some kind of pattern. Now Wiley announced to me to be investigating the goings-on at Journal of Cellular Biochemistry, and asked to share the list compiled by Bik and Smut Clyde. Also a Taylor & Francis publishing ethics manager was thankful and added:

Update 28.01 and 6.02.2020. It is possible the paper mill is creating dud ORCID profiles for their customers, since some journals, like Journal of Cellular Biochemistry apparently expect ORCID identification. Smut Clyde collected a number of suspect cases, here some examples: Zhang et al 2018 and Zhang & Liu 2019 contain next to utterly phony Gmail addresses also empty ORCID profiles, created after the manuscripts were submitted (here and here).

Further evidence to ORCID fraud is provided by the fact that certain actors and recurrent paper mill customers sport multiple ORCID entries. A certain Yang Wang of Jilin University purchased 3 papers from the mill (Nr 17, 18 and 31 in the list), for which 2 ORCID ID were created (here and here). The duo Dexin Yin and Dajun Sun, also of Jilin, purchased 6 papers (Nr 40, 41, 70, 265, 273, 279), for which two throwaway ORCID profiles were created for each gentlemen (Yin vs Yin, Sun vs Sun). There are even different throwaway email addresses for the alleged corresponding authors, different in each Journal of Cellular Biochemistry paper:

Here are some frames from a computer-animated version of Star Wars IV, plotted with an old line-printer (thats what we did for entertainment in the late 1970s). The Death Star down in each frames quadrant Q3 is shooting out bolts of planet-smashing energy to the right through Quadrant Q4, while disciplined flotillas of Rebel Alliance X-Wing starfighters are swooping down through Q1 and Q2.

No, I made that up. These hairballs are purportedly FACS scatterplots where each dot is a cell, located by its surface-protein measurements: Figures from Tang et al. (2020) [11]. Surprisingly many cells yielded identical values in these independent experiments!

When blobs of protein are formed on an electrophoresis gel, blotted onto a membrane and then picked out with antibodies, they can take many forms and shapes, depending on the distortions as they were force-marched across the gel depending also on their shape when they were streaked out onto the starting-line. They can bunch up as they travel, or spread out sideways into neighbouring lanes, also the spaces between blobs vary. But they should not cavort like Zany Portuguese Sardines.

Thus skepticism is understandable when one encounters Figures where the lane spacing is constant and bands of all molecular weights are random but interchangeable morphological mixtures. Especially when the background texture is identical when emphasised by increasing the contrast; not only between bands but between Figures, and even between papers manuscripts from non-overlapping teams of researchers, at unconnected hospitals and research centres from far-flung provinces in China.

Indigofera Tanganyikensis reported the first two instances of this phenomenon (Liu et al, 2019 [13]; Liu et al., 2020 [14]). Then Clone Ranger Elisabeth Bik (a.k.a. Obik-wan Kenobik) joined the chase. Currently they have flagged over 30 of these sardine scrapbooks in PubPeer threads, too many to list here so TigerBB8 and I scraped off the details and arranged them into a spreadsheet. Most author-names are unique although a few research teams have been back for a second bite of the cherry.

In theory the corresponding authors of each paper have been notified and invited to join the discussion of their work (an automagic feature of the PubPeer software), though no-one has shown up yet. In some cases the invitation may not have reached the authors, due to their choice of Gmail e-addresses, which are no longer accessible in mainland China.

Now I am in no position to criticise anyone for adopting a playful pseudonym for correspondence, but these are not as academic as I would expect. The sources of the nyms are not obvious, apart from Casey Peiffer, who is a 9/11 Truther of some renown. At any rate the journal has evidently managed to stay in contact with whoever submitted them. This is an improvement on another early example in this tradition, Liu et al. (2017) [3], which was retracted when the editors could not contact the authors for the final authorisation. Not because of this:

Phytochemicals from the materia medica of Traditional Chinese Medicine are common Astrogaloside, Baicalein, Salidroside. I begin to wonder if there are any TCM-approved phytochemicals which dont inhibit the proliferation and migration of medulloblastoma Daoy cells, in the hands of staff from Jining #1 Peoples Hospital.

The majority of papers appeared in the Journal of Cellular Biochemistry from the Wiley stable, though not exclusively so (Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy features as well, and Artificial Cells Nanomedicine and Biotechnology, and a few others). This may change. I would not be surprised if the PubPeer commentariat simply focussed on recent issues of J.Cell.Biochem. first, so we should not succumb to Selection Bias.

J.Cell.Biochem. has become popular among China-based molecular-biology researchers as an outlet for their work, and has a respectable Citations Index of 3.448 (though how much of that citational credit flows in from other journals remains to be seen). Despite this, my initial hope that the editors would consult experts to review submissions has been dispelled by their blithe acceptance of the egregious images above. Perhaps the peer-reviewers and contributors are collectively engaged in a Post-Modern project of redefining what Western Blots and FACS plots should look like, forging new expectations and conventions.

Two papers featured what purport to be Transwell Invasion Assays, while more closely resembling exercises in fumage and collage; the reviewers also thought these were fine (Zhang et al, 2019 [7]; Zhuang, Liu & Wu, 2019 [9]). Despite non-overlapping author lists, the images of both papers were built from a single small repertoire of fumage motifs.

Elsewhere the reviewers signed off on this Declaration of Data Availability, puzzling in its uncertainty: The data set(s) supporting the conclusions of this article is(are) included within the article (Liu et al., 2020 [12]).

The article contained no raw data, lacking even the number of repetitions behind the graphs, though the statement could still be true if in fact the data sets dont exist. Or if they exist but contradict the conclusions.

Setting the journal aside, the sources of these papers are not geographically diverse. The current list shows a concentration in Shandong Province, in Jining and Qingdao and a few other cities. Changchun, in Jilin Province, is a smaller hotspot. Those two groups trying TCM on medulloblastoma at the Department of Paediatrics, Jining No. 1 Peoples Hospital seem to be working independently; they should get in touch and coordinate their efforts. [4], a.k.a. marildivisio25318, Id like you to meet [5], a.k.a. RosettajKirkland3814 but maybe you have already met.

All this has a parsimonious explanation in a policy in Chinas medical sector, whereby promotion for everyone clinicians and researchers alike depends on publishing academic papers. Of course the average overworked doctor has neither the time, the training nor the resources to apply transfection technology to the interaction between triptolide, microRNA-1462 and JNK pathways in osteosarcoma, then write it up for publication, so they pay someone else to make it all up. And if you were familiar with the conventions of the academic genre, and had the software for plotting made-up statistics, wouldnt you take advantage of this market opportunity by setting up a papermill?

Presumably the persons behind this service are relying on word-of-mouth to advertise their service, hence the geographical concentration. They have friends or members outside the mainland, allowing them to access the bogus Gmail accounts and keep in touch with the journal. One can speculate that there is someone within the editorial structure of J.Cell.Biochem. who is in on the deal and has suborned the peer-review process to ensure that manuscripts are only sent to friendly or fictitious reviewers (the same deduction might also follow for other journals; we await further developments).

Are there any victims in this curious market-driven ecology, where the nominal authors get the CV-stuffers they need and the actual authors get paid? Opinions are divided. There is the danger that genuine biomedical researchers in China might be disadvantaged if they foolishly published in J.Cell.Biochem., only to have their work dismissed and ignored. It would be helpful if the journal introduced some sort of flag to let readers know which of their articles are based on real experiments and which ones are information-free fabrications, forged to meet contractual / promotional obligation.

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During a recent scientific visit to China I discovered that all serious Chinese scientists know how to access Google from inside China. You wrote they have friends or members outside the mainland, allowing them to access the bogus Gmail accounts and keep in touch with the journal but I dont think they need that. Hong Kong and Taiwan provide nice internet bridges for homegrown vpns. But indeed, there is a huge Chinese diaspora in academia all over the world and they naturally keep in touch with their friends (e.g. fellow alumini of the same Chinese university) back home, helping one another out, in both directions. I suppose that the Chinese business world is the same as the Chinese academic world. Neither business, nor science, is stopped by internet walls; though everyone complains what a nuisance it is.

I dont deny that some Chinese can access Google service from inside China, including those you referred as serious Chinese scientists, but they must be serious enough risking being detained by police simply for accessing Gmail using a VPN, or they must be privileged (enough) to have been assigned a direct port going outside the country or with special permission of using VPN to leap over the Great Firewall. If you have been serious enough communicating with your serious Chinese scientist friends, you would have known what (leap over a wall) means. If not, simply ask them if they were practicing while accessing Gmail.

Facebook and Twitter do not exist within the territory of mainland China, neither does Google. But I bet you have seen Twitter users who apparently are from inside China, such as Peoples daily, CNTV, etc. Hope that explains what I mean by privileged.

Authors of the papers summarized in this article are physicians in regional hospitals. They are not those born more equal than others and very unlikely to have a direct port accessing external web service like Google. Even if they were somehow able to access Gmail one way or another, it is very odd for a Chinese doctor to register his/her email account like nancycook, I bet 90% of them never understand Nancy Cook is a proper name.

FYI. I confirmed with multiple friends in Beijing, Tianjin, Henan, and Shandong that Gmail was only accessible through a VPN. To make my confirmation serious enough, I contacted one serious scientist in Chinese Academy of Science (CAS), and she confirmed the same thing for me. Even at the highest level research institution like CAS, which by the way the most privileged, she cannot access Gmail without using special means such as a VPN.

I work at a research institute directly under a provincial Academy of Science in China. I hardly know anyone in my department who dont use a VPN to access at least google scholar when needed, though for most other services they use Chinese alternatives. My boss doesnt, as far as I know, but everyone else does. So do virtually all my friends here and my wifes work colleagues.

My general rule of thumb: if the paper has all authors with Chinese names (think Chong, Zhong, etc) from a university in China (think state key), I dont bother reading the paper. Its probably wrong, and not worth the time.

Im quite tired of your comments man Is it possible for you to be more creative here? OK, everybody here finds out that western people are OK and Chinese, Blacks, Indians, and whatever you call them are just bad people. I mean, if you converted your commenting efforts into something more useful for your career, I bet you were a full professor now instead of being a poor post doc.

By the way, your ignorance of Chinese or whatever crappy junks that are out there dont make them disappear. Those junks are just there and they already delivered the intended benefit for their authors even if those craps will be retracted. So stop this gesture of being the most glorious and honest researcher in the world and just please remember how miserable your life is as a poor old under paid post doc and do something about it to get out of this shit

I love how you are always pointing out someones status (mine, post-doc), and put them down if they are lower in the hierarchy. Again, my observation has been some (not all) non-western cultures have a tendency to like to do this, to suggest people low down on the ladder are inferior or subhuman. Maybe for this reason these cultures want to get ahead at any cost.

I suspect that there would be no difference if the current gubblements of Britain and the US enacted an edict that medical professionals needed to publish research papers in proper science journals before they could be promoted, then English-only papermills would lose no time in filling the market gap.

But at the same time, the papermill productions should be labelled somehow, so that people dont mistake them for real observations on herbal extracts and cancer, and so that actual researchers in China dont become disadvantaged by having their work dismissed.

In Sport, athletes from Russia were banned from participating due to state driven doping. If the Chinese government is not cleaning up this mess pretty soon, Chinese scientist should be banned from publishing in international journals. Ideally.

Crap researchers pay crap journals to publish crap, and in the process they make a mockery of peer review, citations and the concept of scientific publication in general. Long ago one of my profs told me that the most important instrument a scientist needs is a finely-tuned bullshit detector, and I have come up with an assortment of methods for ignoring this garbage, its originators and purveyors. Screening by originating nations actually works quite well, and if the minority of legitimate contributors suffer, that is the price they have to pay for letting the problem continue. It is to be hoped that we will soon have AI systems capable of doing the job of quarantining these half-bright wankers in their own corner of what they imagine is the scientific universe. Maybe we can even construct some virtual reality schemes to fool them into thinking they are doing something worthwhile.

Screening by originating nations actually works quite well, and if the minority of legitimate contributors suffer, that is the price they have to pay for letting the problem continue. With all due respect, I think this is racist shite.

Profiling, sadly, works, but the social justice warriors will call it racist in a heartbeat. Of course these individuals are probably removed from the realities of the argument, or somehow benefit from the social justice stance.

In science, time is worth much more than money. If a nation tolerates and in many cases actively promotes fakery for everything from data to reagents, why should I waste my precious time considering or acknowledging the outputs of its researchers? They are shoveling shit while I am trying to mine gold. Only the laziest of intellects could call that racist. To save you time, Im also Hitler.

I am amazed by the frequency of data duplications and manipulation in recent papers in many different journals. A quick look at the newest ones in Journal of Cellular Physiology (Wiley), the sister journal of Journal of Cellular Biochemistry, which is highly involved in the Chinese paper mill scam), I found several train wrecks:

Researchers, please engage! Contact NIH and the US National Library of Medicine and ask for quality control in their journal indexing. Ask your research institution why they support publishers that are spreading misinformation and destroying the science. Report all research misconduct.

A paradigm shift is needed to rebuild trust and reproducibility in science. A stringent quality control at the public indexing of scientific literature and the establishing of an independent international anti-research misconduct agency could be part of the solution.

I have also noticed that both Journal of Cellular Physiology (Wiley),and the sister journal of Journal of Cellular Biochemistry, have something like 3000-4000 papers per issue. How is that possible? How can an issue be that big? My guess is that somebody took over these journals once they reached IF of about 4 and is now just publishing everything for a fee. Next IF will drop drastically, for sure, and these journals will be dead. But then they might be growing already other journals for the same purpose. And its not only China, note in some of these issues same Iranian author publishing 20 reviews, how can that be?

Two papers featured what purport to be Transwell Invasion Assays, while more closely resembling exercises in fumage and collage; the reviewers also thought these were fine (Zhang et al, 2019 [7]; Zhuang, Liu & Wu, 2019 [9]). Despite non-overlapping author lists, the images of both papers were built from a single small repertoire of fumage motifs.

The workshop evidently has access to a small stock of legitimate Transwell invasion / migration images, so these feature in some of the productions for added verisimilitude. Until the stock runs out and they have to be reused.

This complicated stamp collection is my attempt to show the duplications, triplications and quadruplications between Lv et al. (2019). Yi et al. (2019) and Sun et al (2019)

Images are triplicated just within Sun et al. The journal in question, Artificial Cells, Nanomedicine, and Biotechnology, is pay-to-publish Open Access, and does not seem to bother with peer reviewers.

With ~260 productions noticed so far, there are enough data to spot sub-styles within the fake blots. Clearly we are dealing with a whole studio rather than a one-man fake factory, so I could speculate that these stylistic tweaks are coming from different desks.

For Ras-ERK1/2 signaling contributes to the development of colorectal cancer via regulating H3K9ac (Tian et al. 2018), a reviewer asked for Representative pictures for transwell migration and soft-agar colony formation assays, and these were duly added in the second version. The papermill even handles revisions! I am impressed.

The reviewers could not have been aware that the same images of migration and colony formation were also used in another paper, Huang & Jin (2018), for completely different cells and different treatments.

I cant be sure if those manuscripts were all artificially created or not. Some manuscripts put for sale may be legit papers but their authors dont seem mind adding a spot or two for some extra cash.

Also, this screenshot Leonid posted was originally posted by an anonymous ppl (namely mob per a Dr. Martinez on twitter). I went to the same site yesterday (Feb. 05), there were apparently less such ads but still some info suggesting similar business was still going on and everyone seemed used to that. I saw the following post (red is my rough translation for the dialog)

Editorial Note: We, the Editor and Publisher, are aware that this article Long non-coding RNA H19 promotes angiogenesis in microvascular endothelial cells by down-regulating miR-181a, was previously published in the International Journal of Biological Macromolecules in August 2018. After publication the authors noticed significant errors in their results, and in agreement with the editors at International Journal of Biological Macromolecules, withdrew the article. The authors revised the study to address the errors and submitted to Artificial Cells, Nanomedicine and Biotechnology, where the article was fully peer reviewed and accepted for publication by the editors. In the interests of providing our readers with full transparency on this issue we have provided the link to the withdrawal statement.

If Read then score, 2. Check country of origin, including whether e-mail addresses of authors are consistent with known restrictions, score No 0, Yes 1 2. Check journal, is it dubious, score dubious 0 or OK 1. 3. Does journal have a rubout policy of dealing with fraud? Score 0 or 1. 4. How much of original data available ? None = 0, all = 1, intervening value allowed.

Yang Wang, of Department of Orthopaedics, ChinaJapan Union Hospital of Jilin University. Sometimes working with colleagues from The Second Hospital of Jilin University. 12 papers Dexin Yin, of Department of Vascular Surgery China, Japan Union Hospital of Jilin University. Seven papers.

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