Stem cell scientist ‘guilty of misconduct’

As a rule we only bring you enlightening information here on Deskarati, but occasionally we find something that is so important we break our own guidelines. This story is important, it shows the negative side of science. It is imperative that we are aware that the pressures on scientists to produce ground breaking work can and does sometimes do the opposite. The good news is that due to the rigours of the science community most of this ‘bad science’ it caught. ‘Nullius in verba’ – Deskarati

An investigation into a supposedly groundbreaking stem cell study in Japan has found the lead researcher guilty of misconduct. The Riken Centre panel said Dr Haruko Obokata fabricated her work in an intentionally misleading fashion. It said there were irregularities in data and images used in Dr Obokata’s scientific papers published in Nature. She stands by her claim to be able to produce stem cells using an acid bath or mechanical stress.

There were high hopes about the technique that promised to offer a cheap and ethical source of stem cells. Stem cells can become any other type of tissue and are already being investigated to heal the damage caused by a heart attack and to restore sight to the blind. But experts have been questioning Dr Obokata’s findings and other research groups have failed to reproduce her results. Via Stem cell scientist ‘guilty of misconduct’.

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