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The authors have recently discovered errors in the article by Antcliffe and colleagues (1) published in the April 15, 2019 issue of the Journal. The authors informed the Journal that 39 of the 176 patients (22%) had been misclassified into the wrong transcriptomic sepsis response signature (SRS) group. This was discovered in subsequent work when later sample timepoints from the same patients were analyzed using different laboratory assays. To allow alignment of results from the different assays, some original samples were reanalyzed. It then became apparent that some original assays were incorrect. On further investigation, it was found that this error occurred when one box of samples was inadvertently rotated through 180 degrees. When the samples were then transferred into the assay plate, they were mislabelled; thus 39 samples were misclassified. This error has now been corrected and further checks between RNA results and newly obtained DNA genetic results have confirmed the revised assignments. The original analyses reported in the article have all been rerun. Although the numbers differ, the authors maintain that the overall results and conclusions have not changed. There is still a significant interaction between assignment to hydrocortisone or placebo, and SRS phenotype (P = 0.02 – the same P value as before). The increased mortality associated with hydrocortisone treatment in the SRS2 phenotype is still seen, although the point estimate is smaller but with tighter confidence intervals and still well above 1: OR, 4.6; 95% CI, 1.5-14.4, compared with OR, 7.9; 95% CI, 1.6-39.9, previously. There are some other variations in the secondary outcomes. The tables have been extensively updated, revised figures included, and some minor text changes in the article and associated online supplement have been made. Therefore, the Journal is replacing the online version of the article with a corrected version. In addition, a document showing all the changes to the results will be posted as an online supplement to the original article. The authors would like to apologize to the readership for any confusion caused by these errors.

Original publication




Journal article


American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine

Publication Date





1572 - 1573