Stem cell fraud...again?

Stem cell researchers at the University of Minnesota are once again under investigation for falsifying data, linkurl:New Scientist reported;http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20327205.000-doubts-over-stem-cell-images-prompt-new-inquiry.html?DCMP=NLC-nletter&nsref=mg20327205.000 this week. Mouse embryonic stem cellsImage: Wikimedia commonsEarlier this year, New Scientist identified at least two potentially manipulated or duplicated images in a linkurl:2008 American Journal of Physiology pape

By | August 6, 2009

Stem cell researchers at the University of Minnesota are once again under investigation for falsifying data, linkurl:New Scientist reported;http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20327205.000-doubts-over-stem-cell-images-prompt-new-inquiry.html?DCMP=NLC-nletter&nsref=mg20327205.000 this week.
Mouse embryonic stem cells
Image: Wikimedia commons
Earlier this year, New Scientist identified at least two potentially manipulated or duplicated images in a linkurl:2008 American Journal of Physiology paper;http://ajpcell.physiology.org/cgi/content/abstract/296/3/C441 coauthored by linkurl:Jizhen Lin,;http://www.med.umn.edu/ent/researchfaculty/lin/home.html a researcher in the Department of Otolaryngology in the university's medical school. The paper reported that stem cells from the inner ears of mice could be differentiated to create neurons and sensory hair cells. Based on their own investigation, New Scientist identified one photograph of a gel that appeared to have duplicated bands spliced into the image, and two other images that seemed identical, though they were meant to represent results for two different genes. Further exploration uncovered possibly duplicated images in six additional papers published by Lin between 2001 and 2007. In April, New Scientist alerted the university to their findings, and an investigation was launched last month. Last October, linkurl:a panel at the University of Minnesota ruled;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/55075/ that linkurl:Morayma Reyes,;http://www.pathology.washington.edu/faculty/profile?id=843 a former PhD student in the lab of stem cell researcher linkurl:Catherine Verfaillie,;http://www.stemcell.umn.edu/faculty/Verfaillie/home.html had falsified data in a linkurl:2001 Blood paper.;http://bloodjournal.hematologylibrary.org/cgi/content/abstract/98/9/2615 linkurl:Blood retracted the paper;http://bloodjournal.hematologylibrary.org/cgi/content/short/113/10/2370 in March of this year, citing "duplications and other irregularities in multiple figures." In early 2007, New Scientist questioned the validity and originality of the data in a linkurl:2002 Nature paper;http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v418/n6893/full/nature00870.html from Verfaillie's lab reporting the first adult pluripotent stem cells, and that June, Nature retracted the figures in question. Verfaillie was the corresponding author on both those papers. She was also an author on the 2008 American Journal of Physiology paper with Lin. Correction (August 7): The original version of this article indicated that Reyes was the subject of the investigation regarding the 2002 Nature paper. While she was a co-author on the paper, she was not the specific focus of the inquiry. The Scientist regrets the error.
**__Related stories:__***linkurl:Guilty: stem cell researcher;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/55075/
[7th October 2008]*linkurl:Adult stem cell figure retracted;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/53279/
[13th June 2007]*linkurl:Adult stem cell report questioned;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/52892/
[26th February 2007]

Comments

Avatar of: anonymous poster

anonymous poster

Posts: 12

August 6, 2009

Underlying causes:\n\n1. Sloppy supervision in house, internal refereeing missing by trustworthy colleagues - forgetting the paranoia that they will 'steal' the thunder or leak it?\n\n2. Careless (i) preliminary screeners- perhaps not quite so widely read - the most undesirable development - recently in the publishing world.\n\n(ii) referees- can't know everything- editors are too busy-leaving it to juniors- overconfidence in a few choice referees- if chums of the authors- all the worse: I have discovered/identified (reported to the Ed-in-Chief) a specialist Ed turning down a good paper using exactly the same method as the one approved by the specialist editor - turned out to be a coauthor of one the papers b the accepted authors.\n\nExample of sloppy refreeing: Highly disitinguished- but, if not au fait, and can't see the difference between numbers of entities on cells of two different sizes- blindingly obvious that for comparison one must take the entities per unit area!\n\nI despair. All distinguished editors have been informed of this situation that needs sorting out by COPE
Avatar of: anonymous poster

anonymous poster

Posts: 8

August 6, 2009

Now let me guess...Lin, Reyes & Verfaillie are all still in the lab, doing research & getting ready to publish again. Would like to see some consequences but the community won't let it happen & if it did the journalists would never report it. Am I jaded? You bet.
Avatar of: Shi Liu

Shi Liu

Posts: 12

August 6, 2009

I have reported many problems in iPS research (see publications at http://im1.biz/iSP.htm ).\nThese publications revealed many contradictions existed in the high-profile publications on iPS cells (see examples: Can Yamanaka Explain His Contradictory Statements? http://im1.biz/albums/userpics/10001/LB2008V8N1A3_Yamanaka.htm ) and even obvious data problems such as \nAmazingly "high quality" gel images and indistinguishable PCR bands from different iPS cells (http://im1.biz/000/Science20081107_iPS_PCR_band.htm ). However, all "top" journals have rejected my submissions including one entitled "Understanding the Nature and Risk of Incorrectly Programmed Stem Cells (iPSCs)" (http://im1.biz/displayimage.php?album=87&pos=1 ). \n
Avatar of: anonymous poster

anonymous poster

Posts: 2

August 6, 2009

I sure hope this doesn't become associated with their names in future Google searches... That would be *really* tragic.
Avatar of: null null

null null

Posts: 5

August 6, 2009

The editor of Stem Cells and Development is currently retracting a paper by researchers at Newcastle University. It appears that palgiarism is the issue, but the British Fertility Society had previously expressed doubt about the paper's claim that the first human sperm had been created from embryonic stem cells. This claim had been reported worldwide in the yellow press.\n\nIt time for scientific misconduct to be criminalised and those accused afforded due process. Scientists haven't got what it takes to be amateur police detecting misconduct in their spare time. If misconduct is detected, the ensuing quaint wrist slapping is occassionally followed by a lingering of a name on the internet.\nThe public needs protection.\nPeter Darroch\nhttp://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/5949676/Artificial-sperm-research-included-plagiarised-paragraphs.html
Avatar of: anonymous poster

anonymous poster

Posts: 13

August 11, 2009

Click the name Morayma Reyes in the article and you will be transported to her Web page at the U. of Washington med center. She is an Asst. Prof., MD PhD. Specializes in stem cell research. What is reality? Feh!
Avatar of: Michael Pyshnov

Michael Pyshnov

Posts: 10

August 12, 2009

It seems that there is really no desire to end fraud in science. Fraud is at all levels:\nhttp://ca.geocities.com/uoftfraud/committee.htm

August 12, 2009

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Avatar of: Shaffer Degrassi

Shaffer Degrassi

Posts: 1

July 2, 2010

I just hope that this issue will soon come to an end. Let us not lose hope that scientists will soon perfect their stem cell research. But until then, do not present false hope to the public so that you will not get scrutinized. When publishing a questionable research, it is simply not enough to have a Dallas shredding company destroy the evidence of your mistake. This matter is recorded and instillied in the minds of your expectators so be weary.

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