Oncologist Found Guilty of Misconduct

A government investigation concludes that Anil Potti faked data on multiple grants and papers.

By Kerry Grens | November 9, 2015

WIKIMEDIAFormer Duke University cancer researcher Anil Potti fabricated information in six grant applications and nine now-retracted publications, according to findings from the US Office of Research Integrity (ORI) published today (November 9).

“We are pleased with the finding of research misconduct by the federal Office of Research Integrity related to work done by Dr. Anil Potti,” Doug Stokke, vice president of marketing and communications for Duke Medicine, said in a statement (via Retraction Watch). “We trust this will serve to fully absolve the clinicians and researchers who were unwittingly associated with his actions, and bring closure to others who were affected.”

Some of the invented data were part of basic research that formed the foundation of clinical studies; some were in reports on the human trials themselves. For instance, according the investigation’s results: “Respondent stated in grant application 1 R01 CA136530-01A1 that 6 out of 33 patients responded positively to dasatinib when only 4 patients were enrolled and none responded and that the 4 CT scans presented in Figure 14 were from the lung cancer study when they were not.”

Earlier this year, Duke settled a lawsuit brought about by patients and families of patients who were enrolled in the suspect trials.

The ORI reported that Potti has no intention of using US Public Health Service funds in the future. Even so, he agreed to supervision of any research awarded under a government grant and to abstain for serving in a supervisory role for the Public Health Service in the next five years.

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Avatar of: GregGold


Posts: 3

November 10, 2015

The obvious question for me is why is this person still employed?

Avatar of: Brian Hanley

Brian Hanley

Posts: 36

November 10, 2015

Why do they do commit fraud? Because it works so very well to get the money to roll in, and that advances their careers so much. Then, when they get caught, they get a slap on the wrist, and lose very little. Many continue on with barely a bobble in their career.

It's a no-brainer to commit fraud.

But if Dong-Pyou Han was criminally prosecuted and convicted, then Anil Potti should be prosecuted also. http://www.nature.com/news/us-vaccine-researcher-sentenced-to-prison-for-fraud-1.17660

Not until criminal prosecutions for defrauding the federal government are routine will this problem start to die back. As it stands, everyone who is honest is a sucker and operates at a severe disadvantage.

Avatar of: dumbdumb


Posts: 99

Replied to a comment from GregGold made on November 10, 2015

November 11, 2015

Totally agreed!

Just reinforcing the golden rule that:

cheating is the most efficient way to have a successful career in science

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