Misconduct Apology

A neurodegenerative disease researcher found guilty of fabricating results in funding applications has written an open letter of apology and clarification.

By | January 18, 2013

FLICKR, STEAKPINBALLLast month Paul Muchowksi, a senior researcher at the Gladstone Institute for Neurological Disease, was reprimanded after the Office of Research Integrity (ORI) found that he had reported data that didn’t exist at the time he submitted three grant applications to the National Institutes of Health, one of which was funded. Now, Murchowski has written an open letter of apology and clarification, posted last week (January 9) at Retraction Watch.

In the letter, Murchowski expressed “sincere remorse and apologies” to the scientific community. “In these instances, I stated that the experiments had, in fact, been performed prior to their completion,” he wrote. “Based on previous experience with such experiments, I believed that I could perform these experiments by the time that my grant would be reviewed.” He claimed that the studies in question were not critical in determining the fate of the applications, but wrote that, “I now know with conviction and remorse to only include the data I have at hand and have checked myself.”

Murchowski added that his published findings have never been called into question, that there will be no retractions based on the ORI’s findings, and that the funded grant at issue was not withdrawn. “I unquestionably committed serious errors in judgment,” he wrote. “I regret these completely. I had no intention of misleading the research community about our research studies in any way.”

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