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A libel case between an Egyptian scientist and the scientific journal Nature has begun in the United Kingdom.

Mohamed El Naschie has brought the case because he says that an article that Nature published in 2008 damaged his reputation.

The article said that El Naschie, at that time editor of a theoretical physics journal, self-published papers that had apparently not gone through peer-review — the process of independent checking by other experts in the field that normally precedes publication.

It also said that he listed some affiliations and honorary professorships with international institutions that could not be confirmed, according to BBC Online.

When the case opened last week (11 November) the counsel acting for Nature said that scientists quoted in the article were expressing their honest opinion when they said that El Naschie's papers were of "low quality" and that it was "obvious that there was either zero, or at the very best, very poor-peer review of his own papers".

The Nature article had also published El Naschie's defence of his journal's publication record, saying: "We put more emphasis on the scientific content of the paper and slightly less emphasis on prestigious addresses and impressive affiliations".

The case continues this week when El Naschie will outline his case.

Link to full article in BBC Online